Take a look at Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook. Following those rules, can you use the idea in class with your students? I got some great ideas from Erin Klein. As a teacher seeking to improve my profession, I use social medial all the time to find great ideas. Share how you use social media with your students, show them the hashtags you follow. The authors you read. The museums you visit. Let them see that social media can by used for learning, then unleash the power on your students.
Twitter is a microblog that people can use to share their thoughts. Tweets are limited by a character count, no more than 140 total. Tweets can also have hashtags (#) which will group tweets together. When you use a hashtag, the letters that follow can create a lively conversation. Search twitter for a specific hashtag (#edchat, #ipaded, #edtech, #oklaed just to name a few). If you don’t have a twitter account as a teacher, you should strongly consider joining the conversation.
Use Tweets on a classroom discussion board about a specific topic:
- Posts are limited 140 characters (including spaces between words and punctuation).
- classroom specific hashtags
- students can pin on a bulletin board
- The teacher can Moderate a chat – ask a question, have the students write a tweet, then share those tweets
Use a Tweets discussion board for student sharing/interaction:
- Give students an opportunity to share ideas
- Can discuss independent reading (write something that makes others want to read it).
- Share exciting news in their lives
- Students can share a specific interest
Here are some more great ideas from Pinterest!
Pinterest is an online bulletin board created by you for you. You can organize your pins into boards and those boards can be sorted any way you want. Are you getting ready to get married? There are boards for that. Maybe you are into photography – pinterest has you covered. What about some classroom organization? Look no further…As you can see, a “pin” contains an image, description, and maybe some comments. I found some great ideas from Lindsey Petlak.
Use a Pinterest Board in your classroom:
- As summative assessment to wrap up a unit. Have students leave comments or thoughts on each others pins
- As a book review
- Show and Tell
- Explain a specific topic
As a teacher
- An idea board in the teacher lounge
- A board to pin resources for teaching teams
- Use a board to pin what your club/sport is doing in your school
Instagram is a social media place where you can share pictures with fun captions. Add in some hashtags and a place to “heart” the pics you like and now you have a fun space to look. Instagram is different than twitter – you are not limited by character count, and different from pinterest – no grouping by subject. It is a fun way to share a small slice of life and see what your friends are up to! You can use an instagram board in your classroom in several of the same ways that you use a twitter or pinterest board. You only need to change the template, instagram is typically used only on mobile devices.
As a student:
- Take a “picture” of the big scene from the book/play you are reading
- Take a “picture” of the cell you are studying in biology
- Take a “picture” to sum up a unit you just studied
As a teacher:
- Take a “picture” of your life and hobbies – students love to know what you do
- Take a “picture” of something really cool that happened in your school
- Take a “picture” of something you will be teaching – a teaser of new fun things to come
You already do this, right? But if you don’t, it has quietly become the social media place to be for over 1.35 Billion users. Billion. With a B. If you don’t have a facebook account, join up right here and see what all of the fuss is about. Facebook is a combination of twitter and instagram. You share what is happening (no character limit) and upload a picture. People can “like” your thoughts and leave comments on them. If you say something really brilliant, you peep can even “share” what you posted on their timeline.
I think that facebook will be the easiest one for you to move to bulletin board space, it is usually the one that most people are more familiar with.
All of these different social media items can be used in several different ways or all the same way. Here is a very non-comprehensive list for using analog social media in your classroom. Remember – the trick here is to be creative and fun. The goal is teaching and learning – what can you students show you about what you are studying?
- Posts from a character in a book – specific points of view
- Posts for what you will be teaching in the upcoming year
- Posts from students about what they did over the summer
- Posts from the students specifically related to a unit just studied
- Posts that are exit tickets
- Create laminated blank social media posts and hang it on your door – students post a question when they walk in
- Post tweets of a historical figures’ point of view
- Post tweets of a scientist making a discovery
- For collaboration – remember this is social media, people should be commenting on each others posts
- Post “photos” of what students are learning
- Students can “Like” or “Heart” or “Thumbs Up” great work/ideas
- Create a profile of a famous person
- Post favorite ___________________
Remember – all of these are apps for mobile devices. Even though your class may not be in a situation where everyone has a computer, most students can pair up and use a wireless device to participate in these same activities!
I use all of these! Follow me:
- Instagram (this is not always professional-follow at your own risk 🙂 )
Other thoughts or ideas, cool websites for resources? Leave a comment 🙂