Many educators have read about why they should use Twitter; they have been told why they should us Twitter; they have seen how to use Twitter and yet I feel there are still so few voices of educators on this social media platform. I admit, I was late to join the world of tweeting; I almost feel like the pot calling the kettle black as I write this but alas, I digress.
So why is there still such a push back against using Twitter in an educational setting? Is it because of fear of posting something that will set your career in a spiraling downfall or is it perhaps because it is too overwhelming? Are the complexities surrounding who to follow or how to chat holding one back or perhaps even the fear of not putting enough time into the platform itself?
Regardless of the reason, I hesitate to say that not being on Twitter as an educators lends itself to creating a missed opportunity for students. No, I do not mean FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) but more so missing a great idea or chance to connect to an educator or Austria or Australia. We also miss creating authentic learning opportunities that support the digital world through literacy and citizenship; how can we support our students in understanding social media if we are struggling to understand it ourselves?
I have lost count of how many times I have learned something, both big and small, thanks to my incredibly diverse PLN on Twitter. The endless amounts of personalized PD that has arisen thanks to Twitter makes my heart small. Sure, I get overwhelmed at times and think to myself, I cannot keep up but alas, the wisdom of Mark E. Weston once told me “you’ll learn what you must when you need it”.
Above all, Twitter, with the support of Mark, has also allowed me to find my voice in education so that I can help my students find their own. Twitter can be overwhelming but alas, its positive potential far outweighs the deficits that some may think it contains. Following even 5 other educators can spark a world if opportunity to learn, grow, and support our future change makers one read Tweet at a time.
So I ask you, should you read this because you are part of my Twitter PLN or because you send it a colleague, what hurdles do we need to overcome to connect our classrooms together in an effort to create a better world for all?
Yours in learning,
The Enthusiastic Learner