The Educator's PLN

The personal learning network for educators

Why Twitter is the hub of my personal learning network

A few days ago a teacher in our district asked me about different online publishing platforms for her students. She explained that her students are working on writing mystery stories and she was looking for a way for them to share their writing with others, get feedback and publish their work. 

In the days B.T. (Before Twitter), I would have headed right for Google and dug in. But I didn't. Instead, I sent out the following tweet:

blog.tweet

Within a few minutes, I received two responses.

The first response came from @ccoffa, "Teacher, lifelong learner, blogging and TeachMeet enthusiast in Melbourne Australia." She sent me a link to the Langwitches Blog, written by Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano a globally connected author, 21st Century learning specialist, faculty member at Curriculum21. The specific link in @ccoffa's reply connected me to a Langwitches blog post on Implementing Classroom Blogs that included steps for teachers learning about blogging, examples of blogs, considerations when getting started, rationale for have students share their writing in digital spaces, and a rich description of the process. Global connections don't get much better than that!

The other response came from @Kate_Todd who suggested I check out @kathleen_morris and her 4th grade classroom blog (from Geelong, Australia) for resources on how to get started. On this site, I found video segments, classroom polls, samples of student writing and guidelines for student blogging. This classroom blog engaged students in a variety of writing and publishing activities and even earned them third place in a Classroom Blog contest!

And so, my exploration began. What amazed me was the speed and reach of the connections that enriched my learning.

In my work, I often encounter educators who are fearful of or "don't see the point" of social media. The tendency to block or avoid is alive and well. Yet, to do so closes us off from our own learning, and limits our students' learning.

Alvin Toffler said:

The illiterate of the 21st Century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn.

In an age, when we have access to tools that have the potential of connecting us with other educators across the globe, it seems to me that we need to think differently about how we cultivate our own learning and how we model our learning for our staff and students. 

A set of questions guided by a desire to find out more about professional practice to benefit our students led me to a vast array of learning resources available through a network of connected educators.  That is why Twitter continues to be a very powerful source of my professional growth and learning.

Please feel free to share how your personal learning network has helped your growth. As always, questions and comments are encouraged.

Views: 123

Tags: Twitter, blogging, learning, media, networks, personal, professional, social

Comment

You need to be a member of The Educator's PLN to add comments!

Join The Educator's PLN

Comment by sarah gardner on March 13, 2013 at 4:06pm

Dr. Snyder,

I love your post. As a graduate student I am learning about PLNs, currently, so I've joined Twitter and some other sites. But I really like this site: The Educator's PLN because of full-text comments I can peruse in blogs. Your comments about "cultivating our own learning" are well-stated; as a 'baby-boomer' I've got to step through avoidance and fear and join the 21st Century.

Thank you for your post!

Sarahg

About

Thomas Whitby created this Ning Network.

Latest Activity

Joel Josephson posted a discussion

EU Multilingual Families children’s eStoryBooks

Great NewsThe EU Multilingual Families children’s eStoryBooks have now been published. There are 2 books, for 0 to 6 and 6 to 10.http://www.multilingual-families.eu/repository/for-children They are specifically designed to motivate children to be learn…See More
22 hours ago
Robert Sinclair Jr updated their profile
yesterday
John Marsh shared their blog post on Facebook
yesterday
Teresa Conley posted a discussion

Still time to participate in letting your views be known through my study

It is not too late in get in on this study. I am looking to interview teachers and principals on how effective they believe they are in influencing student learning while operating under Federal and State mandates and district initiatives. I want to know what you believe the problem to be, what skills or knowledge are not being addressed in these mandates and initiatives and what you believe would best help you in your mission of providing effective, quality education for all students. If you…See More
Sunday
Teresa Conley replied to Teresa Conley's discussion What are you beliefs about how effectively you are able to deliver instruction while operating under school reform?
"Robin,  I am sorry I didn't get back to you sooner. Please, if you are still interested in participating in this study, contact me at tac014vr@gmail.com. We can set up a way to do an interview. Looking forward to it. Thanks, Teresa"
Sunday
Profile IconMike Pennella, Heather McFadden, R Lafrance and 11 more joined The Educator's PLN
Saturday
VoiceThread (George) liked Caryn Trautz's discussion "Using Technology with Classroom Instruction that Works" by Howard Pitler, Elizabeth R. Hubbell, and Matt Kuhn.
Friday
Caryn Trautz and VoiceThread (George) are now friends
Friday

Awards And Nominations

© 2014   Created by Thomas Whitby.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service