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: 145

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

Alyce Fabel posted a blog post

Here are 10 Methods That Help to Improve Essay Writing Skills

Essay writing is a serious business. Some of us just write essays as an assignment for school or college and some want to be great writers and create essays to practice their skills and deliver some work. No matter that the initial reason is, writing essays is a skill that everyone needs to have and to develop. If you believe that you are not yet a guru or creating quality essays, the following methods are for you. Read more booksA person who reads a lot will always be a better writer than…See More
5 hours ago
Thomas Whitby's blog post was featured

The Road That Should Not Be Taken

I remember way back in the 70’s, I think it was Time magazine that came out with an article listing the most difficult jobs in America. I remember it because at the top of that list was the job of an eighth grade English teacher. Time based its list on the number of decisions an individual had to make on the job. Of course as an…See More
7 hours ago
Thomas Whitby posted a blog post

The Road That Should Not Be Taken

I remember way back in the 70’s, I think it was Time magazine that came out with an article listing the most difficult jobs in America. I remember it because at the top of that list was the job of an eighth grade English teacher. Time based its list on the number of decisions an individual had to make on the job. Of course as an…See More
7 hours ago
Mon Kap is now a member of The Educator's PLN
7 hours ago
David Chiles updated their profile
9 hours ago
David Chiles posted a status
"Zynga Words With Friends for the classroom…"
9 hours ago
Leona Hinton commented on Amelia Bennett's blog post Elementary school in Norway
yesterday
Leona Hinton commented on Mary Isom's blog post Tips on Choosing University
"Smart budgeting is utterly important but nevertheless, students may try to win a grant and get the opportunity to study in the most expensive universities for free."
yesterday

Awards And Nominations

© 2016   Created by Thomas Whitby.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service