Seriously. If you are a teacher, and you aren’t on Twitter (or at least reading math teacher blogs), you are seriously missing out on an amazing experience. There is an entire network of brilliant math teachers who are very active on Twitter. They are constantly sharing links and sending out tweets that contain information that is helpful and relevant to what I teach every day. Here is what I see (and participate in) on Twitter everyday:
- Lesson planning – a teacher will have an idea that needs developing. He/she will tweet the beginnings of an idea. Multiple teachers will read this tweet and make suggestions. More teachers join and make more suggestions. The idea grows and develops. In minutes, you have an amazing idea that is more that you could have ever thought up on your own.
- Links to amazing resources. – When teachers find a great idea, a new game, a cool graph, etc. they will tweet it out for all to see and enjoy.
- Networking – It can be difficult for the too few, too busy teachers in your department at school to try to help you out during the day. On Twitter, there are hundreds of teachers for each subject area. And they love being on Twitter, and they love to talk to other teachers that teach their same subject.
- Help – If you need something, tweet it! Chances are, there is an amazing teacher out there that has exactly the resource you are looking for. It is much more efficient than trolling the internet.
- Support – Teaching is hard work, and we have some bad days. There is nothing better than 15 – 20 teachers tweeting you warm fuzzies when you need it the most. They’re going through it with you, and their words mean more than those from family and friends because they actually understand.
I know it seems daunting, but it’s really easy once you jump in. You just need to create an account, start following people, and read the tweets. Then, follow people who’s tweets you like. Then jump in! To make it very easy and painless, Sam Shaw created a website just for new teachers to make jump into tweeting and reading blogs easier. This is where you should start. Please visit his site to read a much better description of what the site it, then visit the site itself!
I am definately going to do this for myself. I was wondering if anyone out there has two twitter accounts – one for newtworking with other math teachers and one for your current students. I teach middle school and would like to have a separate account for my students to follow. I would tweet happy birthdays, project reminders, quiz and test reminders, and perhaps school closures. Thoughts? Comments?
I think that’s a great idea! My MS kids don’t use Twitter, so it wouldn’t be effective for me yet, but I could see it as a great tool that could also simplify your life. It would be so easy to just tweet out, “7th grade – several students are having trouble with problem 3. I’ll get on the hotline at 8 to discuss.”. For that reason I think two accounts would be much better bc the focus would be so different than your regular Twitter activity. In fact, I saw a convo on Twitter just yesterday about this. Look up @wahedahbug and @dandersod to see the thread. And I’d love to hear how it goes if you decide to do it.
I am going to have to check that out. I get the concept of twitter, but I am a visual person and I prefer to see things, that’s why I prefer blogs and interest, because it’s more visual. Twitter just seems overwhelming to me. I am on twitter, but haven’t really jumped in yet. I will definitely check out that intro. Maybe you can mentor my in twitter! 🙂
I’m so excited that you are ready to jump into Twitter with us! I’m a 100% visual learner as well and that’s why I love Pinterest. But Twitter is where we develop our Pinterest finds. First, we find a cool Pinterest idea, tweet it to each other, and then tweet to develop and/or change the concept together to fit our needs. Then, we share the finished product with each other through our blogs and the math teachers wiki. It’s very inspiring and exciting working together on an idea. Right now we are working together on Twitter to make awesome Interactive Notebooks.
I just discovered all of the middle school math blogs this summer and have learned so much from all of you! I would LOVE to mentor you! I’ve met several ms math teachers that are new to twitter lately. It’ll be great to get us all together. Email or DM me with your twitter handle so we can get started. I can’t wait to introduce you to the group. 🙂
I tried to DM on twitter, but you don’t follow me so it would not let me. My twitter ID is luvbcd. Thanks for agreeing to take on a somewhat not extremely tech saavy tweep like myself! I think maybe I should start by tweeting out new blog posts?
@ccfan – I do exactly that. I tweet out assignments, announcements, fun random links to my students on my class twitter acct (which I leave unlocked). I hadn’t thought about birthdays, though! That would be fun. 🙂 My normal twitter account is secure (so the kids can’t follow me) and that one’s all for me. Tweetdeck has the option to quickly switch between accounts, so it’s really easy to do.
Yes, I use Tweetdeck as well and really like it. I have my Facebook on there as well so it is easy to manage all of my social media with one application.
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