As you may have noticed in my previous blog post my class, 3 Jess, has recently begun to use Twitter PROPERLY. I say properly for 3 reasons that I will outline and explain in this post.
Reason 1: We now have a Twitter wall. It’s a window that looks into an office. I backed this window with black paper to give it a chalkboard feel, bought some liquid chalk markers and VOILA! a Twitter wall. I also added a clipboard and paper for those students who don’t feel comfortable using the markers. Throughout the day students are free to reflect on their learning at any point. We have discussed expectations and responsibilities, so I am not at all worried about students wasting an excess amount of time at Twitter wall. Students initial their tweets so their privacy is protected but still feel a sense of ownership over their tweet. I then upload these tweets onto our class Twitter account (@3JessMLP12C) using the iPad. This Twitter wall also has a space for ‘Tweeter of the week’ and ‘Tweet of the week’. At the moment I am the one who will choose these lucky winners, but next term I’d like to leave it up to the students to select a winner for each of these categories. There is also a space that lists the number of accounts we are following, the number of accounts following us and the number of tweets we have posted.
Reason 2: I have made time for us to read and reply to tweets each day. Each morning, after we have marked the role etc., we connect the iPad to the Apple TV. We go through any tweets that came through overnight. As a class we discuss replies and post these. We also go through our Twitter feed and look at what our ‘friends’ have been doing. These short sessions generate interesting class discussions amongst my students. I also stop students throughout the day when necessary to show them something that somebody has replied or posted.
Reason 3: We have made approximately 20 global connections in the past week. My students have become thoroughly excited by the fact that they are talking to teachers and students in places such as Ireland, New York and Canada. We have tweeted them, discussed similarities in learning and looked for their locations on maps. At the moment we are trying to get our Prime minister, Julia Gillard, to follow us so she can see the fantastic learning taking place in our classroom. 3/6/13 UPDATE: Julia Gillard followed my class. They were all extremely excited!
As a class we have discussed cyber safety. We have spoken about why we don’t put photos of our faces up or give away our home address or personal details over social networking sites such as Twitter. They understand that we only initial their tweets in order to protect their privacy.
We have spoken about hastags and tagging other twitter accounts in our tweets. Some of the tags we have been using are: #vicpln, #literacy #science #mathchat.
We also have several parents following our account, which is fantastic. We discuss their tweets and replies in class, which the students love.
I highly recommend using Twitter in the classroom, it’s a great and exciting experience… If you put in the effort and do it properly!
Again I’d like to thank Bec Spink for inspiring me at ICTEV13.
Here is a few of our tweets from Tuesday and Wednesday!