Friday, December 4, 2009

Why Twitter? Part 1

[This is the first in a series of posts about why Twitter should be unblocked for teachers in the Minneapolis Public Schools and why Twitter should play a role in every teachers personal professional development. Many teachers are already part of a Personal Learning Network (PLN) but this concept needs to be expanded.]

On Twitter, I was recently followed by @PaulV8. Here's PaulV8's bio from Twitter:
Husband, Father, H.S. AVID and English Teacher

This is the message that PaulV8 sent me shortly after following me:
@learnteachtech might you have anything to stress the difference between summary and reflection?my #avid students don't get it.

I sent him a Tweet about it and said I would turn it into a blog post. You can read the post here.

How does this lead me to suggest that Twitter should be unblocked for teachers in the Minneapolis Public Schools?

Through Twitter, I was contacted by another AVID teacher thousands of miles away. We were able to collaborate. We shared ideas. We connected. I'll certainly look to PaulV8 if I need something AVID related.

But, it doesn't stop there. PaulV8 shared my blog post with his students (I gave permission for this, I was honored). They read it in class. In response to what I wrote, several students posted comments on my blog about what the blog meant to them and how it impacted the learning in an AVID class in Florida. I was able to respond to some of the comments. My next step is to have some of the AVID students in my classroom respond to what I wrote and to the comments from Florida.

Twitter has fostered a cross country connection between two AVID classrooms, improved learning for a group of students and added a valuable member to my PLN. Just one reason, of many, that is driving me to have Twitter unblocked in the Minneapolis Public Schools.

Next up: 24 Hours in Twitter Learning

2 comments:

Mrs. Temple said...

I agree!!! Through twitter, I have found a network of AVID teachers (which was SORELY needed). I love my math tweeps as well, but it's a lot easier to find a math teacher to share ideas with than an AVID teacher!

Dan McGuire said...

I, too, have a request in to have Twitter unblocked. I learn about my craft and practice of teaching by following Twitter.

I've had similar experiences to the one you described. My PLN has linked me to more useful information in the last six months than I've gotten from the 'official' professional development channels in the last 12 years, for free, and that's without being able to access it from my place of work.