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How to Balance Social Media Time With The Demands of School and Family

I am really interested in learning how other busy teachers and administrators balance social media time with all the other demands of school and family?  Lately, I feel as though I am spending too much time online.  I know there is no single best answer.  I'm just looking for a few good strategies... 

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Having a smart phone has been helpful...thanks for the feedback.
Excellent discussion and good to see some new replies.

Social Media Balance is a big issue with me since I am involved personally as @markbrumley and professionally as @HPTeachExchange.

When I am teaching, I set aside 15 minutes in the morning to learn something new. I use HootSuite or Tweetdeck. I literally set a timer (I have Cool Timer installed). When times up...I'm done. Then, I give myself extra time for special events such as #edchat. Additionally, I have several times in the week to read and write blogs. I put this on my calendar like it is an appointment.

When I'm at home, I do my best to not be on social media while the family is awake and active. That means I spend a few hours in the early morning or late at night.

The most important thing I do is always set a timer. If I don't I will look up and 6 hours have flown by.

Thanks, Mark...I am taking a similar approach to my social media time. Allotting time and having a plan are crucial. I have used a timer, but not consistently. My next step is following you on Twitter. Take care!
I have social networking time in the morning on a work day with the first coffee - after emails. Largely this is diigo feeds and tweetdeck. I make use of hashtags. This has become much more imprtant as I have found many more teachers within my own feild on twitter - namely Australian ones. I also check in on tweetdeck through breaks via my iphone. I often look again at night. I call it 'hit and miss'.

I know I miss out on some things - but I also find great things when I do take even 5 minutes. I check rss feeds on weekends when I am not pressed for time. I have found I am getting feeds and twitters on the same things so what i miss on twotter I often later find in rss feeds. I often bookmark and hopefully tag well things I can see a use for on my diigo account so when I am ready to make use of something I will hopefully find it.

I don't get to places like this often - I know they are here if I have the time.
Thanks for your ideas and comments, Jenny. The more I read of how people approach their social media time, the more I am realizing that it is all about finding what works best for you as an individual. I am using similar approaches as you, but need to consider using hashtags more effectively.
I'm looking for a few good strategies myself.  What I currently do is get up early in the morning(4:30 AM) and go through Twitter and the Nings. I have started to add my favorites on Twitter to a Tweetbook pdf and look at them when I can. Twitter is blocked at school. Not the best solutions, but we all have personal lives and things we need to do.



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