I love Twitter! It is one of the most amazing source of information for 21st Century educators. Twitter is a social media tool where users can send short messages (up to 140 characters) into the Twittersphere for others to read. Tweets are usually hashtagged (eg. #education #ICT ) to allow people to search for topics. You can follow people and see their tweets and they can follow you. I follow many different people and hashtags. Edudemic, Cybrary Man and OzTweechersPLN provide a quick guide to educational hashtags for teachers. While the Index to Educational Twitter Hashtags is another great place to start out.
TWEETING IN SCHOOLS
There are many reasons why we should tweet within schools but there are also concerns that are raised by some who believe that social media is not suitable for children. In my opinion social media can be successful in schools as long as it is used properly, like all teaching strategies used in schools. I’m sure we have all seen teaching strategies and methods that make us cringe because they are not being used properly of safely. Social media is the same. Use it within the guidelines set out by your school and it can be a phenomenal tool.
The following are some articles which highlight some of the positive and negative reasons for the use of social media in the classroom:
Pros and Cons of Social Media in the Classroom
Social Media in the K-12 Classroom
Twitter in My Classroom
Social Media Belongs in the Classroom
WHAT YOU NEED TO REMEMBER??
Like all social media you can choose your privacy settings… You can protect your tweets so that only your followers can see what you have written, this may be one way of protecting classroom privacy. If you are tweeting as a classroom then all tweets should be approved by the teacher before adding to Twitter. Or use a safer option like Twiducate this site has greater security options available and is specifically for schools and classrooms.
Scoop.it is my new favourite web tool… yes I know I have a lot of those but I guess that’s why I love teaching and learning, there are always new ideas you come across that make what you do so much easier. Scoop.it is a tool which helps teachers troll the internet for information about particular topics. You can sign up for a free account and you are able to create up to 5 topics. These topics help you gather or curate web based articles, webpages or posts about these particular topics. Scoop.it also allows you to follow other peoples posts.
I have two topics which I am currently curating in relation to teaching.
1. Teaching Tools Today – where I gather and curate tools useful for teaching, these include web 2.0 tools, traditional ideas, graphic organisers and more.
2. What’s New In Education? – Here I gather and curate posts about current trends and pedagogical ideas in education.
How does Scoop.it help me? Well…. it keeps me up to date on what is happening in the world of education. I follow other educators and rescoop their posts that are relevant to me. I am able to find new teaching strategies to help me in the classroom and most importantly I’m connecting with others interested in the same thing… educating the future generations.
I’ve added the links to my blog roll so you can get to the directly.
Do you use scoop.it? Let me know your topics and I’ll have a look!
The School A to Z app is a recently released app from the NSW Department of Education. You can down load this app for Android and Apple. The app contiains several different features. There is an extensive English, Mathematics and Technology dictionaries. These dictionaries are suitable for primary and secondary students.
My favourite part of the app is the Spelling Bee. In this section you can select levels of difficulty or insert your own lists. The words are spoken and you are asked to spell the words.
There is also the Maths Monkeys… if your children have trouble with multiplication this is another great way to practice. See what you think!
Well not really a shop but I tell you that you will find all sorts of amazing Web 2.0 tools and ideas for education.
Mark Brumley is an educator and technology education specialist. His site contains not only ideas and up to date info on the latest tools out there but also has tips and ideas for using web 2.0 in effectively in classrooms.
Check it out and let me know what you think!
I’ve been participating in a really interesting collaorbative network of educators sharing ideas for teaching and using ICT and Web2.0 in the classroom.
This amazing group of people gather most weeks to share knowledge and discuss e-learning, new technologies and ideas related to ICT and education.
I’m learning so much and will be blogging about some of that new learning over the next few weeks.
If you are interested check http://australiaseries.wordpress.com/