Posts tagged: twitter

Authentic educational activities and Twitter…

Here’s an interesting museum blog article from about a year and a half ago on the lessons that museums can learn from Twitter as well as an article at Mashable on using Twitter in journalism.  I’m glad that the latter article’s resources have largely been compiled by journalists.  Teachers might be able to use some of these resources to connect with journalists with the hopes that students can vicariously follow and communicate with the journalists  through the process of their developing a news article.  The museum blog looks at Twitter’s functionality and how it affects communication stream and subsequently people’s thinking  and action through Twitter use.


Twitter still too new for most faculty

Both the Chronicle of Higher Ed and Campus Technology magazine cited a national survey of faculty re Twitter use and as you might expect the majority of faculty don’t use Twitter on any regular basis.  Clearly, this like Facebook is a new tool and faculty are already inundated with other work so unless they’ve got some time to experiment, Twitter may seem like another layer of work.

My two cents…  Most new technologies require some experimentation and sharing of results with colleagues at both your school and others before you really reap the benefits of your time and results with your students.  Fortunately, most of these new technologies require little “mechanics’ time” to learn.   Most time is spent researching trying to find out what other colleagues have done with Twitter and how they’re using it in the classroom.  Here’s to more organized sharing!


25 educational uses of Twitter

From Sonja Cole – at Sonja recently (June 4, 09) wrote a short article listing 25 ways one could teach with Twitter. It’s more like 25 ways  you could use Twitter in education. There’s not much pedagogy involved here. Still, some of these might evolve into something useful for your classes so I’m passing her suggestions along anyway.


Twitter and instruction

Twitter has certainly gained more popularity as a microblogging tool from the recent outpouring of tweets disputing Iran’s political election results to meteorological storm chasers like Rick Sanchez of CNN of the past few years.

So, educational technologists like myself ask what pedagogical structures can make use of Twitter. Well here are some obvious examples:

1. Class Field trips – Teachers and students can report and share their preliminary findings from the field of a predetermined set of research questions. These tweets can be posted to a course blog or a Facebook site where students can later add more detail as well as share their findings with other students.

2. Expert in the field- A teacher or researcher in the field can answer questions from students in classes regarding their findings in the field. The teacher and students can work together to generate questions to send to the researcher who can respond as data are collected and initial findings are recorded. An example that comes to mind… The Space Station and class interactions that have already taken place. With some planning and coordination ahead of time, teachers can make arrangements for authentic classroom activities.

3. Student Mobile reporter – Students can use Twitter to report “local events” to a class blog site. Of course, teachers should be cautious in assigning activities that might put students at jeopardy for any reason such as “junior” storm chasers.

Now, if you’re just getting started with the mechanics of Twitter, you can always tinker with the tool. However, I recently purchased a book re Twitter basics, something I generally don’t do, because technologies like Twitter change so frequently. The book I purchased covers a lot of the basics including newer tools like Tweetdecks which is a Tweets aggregator of sorts.

The book is titled “Twitter Tips, Tricks, and Tweets,” by Paul McFedries. You can purchase it at a local bookstore or via Amazon at for around $20 list price…

As I find and come up with other uses of Twitter and instruction, I’ll be posting them to my blog.


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