I never thought that Twitter and Blogs could be so beneficial to my teaching career. Boy… was I wrong! I started up my twitter account, started following some people my colleagues told me about and never looked back. When I started following EduTopia (@edutopia) I gained some insight on a daily basis on small things that could lead to better my classroom. Their twitter and blog account gives educators daily reminders on nonverbal communication, social justice projects, flipped learning, student SMAT goals, and so much more. EduTopia gave me peace of mind and encouragement while I stress about the best way to educate my students. I also started following We Are Teachers (@WeAreTeachers) for daily inspiration and support during my educational career. We Are Teachers is a blog post for teachers made by teachers. I have found so many motivational or funny quotes to keep me going, but also classroom hacks, teacher research, proper educational tool usage guidelines, and ways to support my students. I love thatWe Are Teachers is made by teachers who go through the same situations as me and have the same questions. This helps me to support my students in the best way possible.
Honestly I tried Twitter for about 5 days when it first became popular and found it had no possible value to my life. But about 2 months ago I tried it again, but this time, I planned to make it for professional use. I was quite surprised by how helpful blogs and microblogs like Twitter are for my professional learning network. Twitter is not only a great way to connect my students with sites and games to support their learning but also to give me the support I need in the classroom. It also shows students a positive benefit of social media. I can share interesting articles with students, create exit slips, and post daily activities. Twitter is a way to build connections across the globe and inspiring learning at home (Walsh, 2011). Students can post short poems, links to their blogs, ideas on how to benefit from each other in a subject area, or comment on a classroom discussion post. Through this students will be able to see the benefits of posting things that have a positive social change. I now realize the benefits of microblogging and blogging and plan to continue to use them.
Blogs are also a great way to keep up parent communication. I started to develop a parent newsletter for keeping my parents up-to- date on school events, upcoming assessments, and project due dates. Next year I plan to turn my newsletter into a blog. So many parents are constantly keeping up with emails and have the internet at the touch of their fingers. This way papers are not lost and I can post beneficial tools that can reiterate the lesson and publish assignments.
Blogs also can be a great communication tool. Students can use blogs to publish their writing and to educate other students on a particular topic (Pappas, 2013). This can help students master their content and progress on their writing. With the use of blogging and micro-blogging, I am facilitating the learning and assessments in my classroom. While my students are improving their writing skills I am modeling and promoting diversity, cultural understanding, and global awareness by assisting students in the use of digital-age communication and collaboration tools (Technology Proficiencies, 2015, pg. 2). I want my students to be proficient 21 st century students. I want to give them the communication tools to be a positive social change in their generation.
Pappas, C. (2013, September 26). How To Use Blogs In the Classroom. Retrieved July 3, 2016, from https://elearningindustry.com/how-to- use-blogs-in-the-classroom.
Technology Proficiencies PDF File. 1st ed. Laureate Education, Inc, 2015. Print.
Walsh, K. (2011). Inspiring learning outcomes with Twitter in the kindergarten classroom. Retrieved from http://www.emergingedtech.com/2011/04/inspiring-learning- outcomes- with-twitter- in-the- kindergarten-classroom/.