Twitter in the Classroom

I just read a blog post about shy students using Twitter in class by Michael G.

Michael said in his post, “And besides, receiving Tweets in class is so unprofessional.What, am I supposed to stop my class so I can check my phone for a Tweet?” There are several ways you can use Twitter.

First of all, if the students are under 13, they are not to be on Twitter. So have a class account and they can Tweet on the one account. This making it so the teacher can delete anything inappropriate, but also allowing the student to ask without even being known. Students can ask questions and interact in class.

Also, if you have a scrolling Twitter page up all the time with the interactions of the students, then you can glance at it while teaching and focus on what they are asking. I know teachers who use Twitter in their classrooms of both over and under the age of 13.

There are many benefits to teaching with Twitter and other social networks that will not interfere with teaching and giving attention to students. You do not have to be on your phone or computer to interact with students, but this could be an added bonus.

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About Anthony Purcell

I am Anthony Purcell and I am currently teaching math in Oklahoma.
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4 Responses to Twitter in the Classroom

  1. Michael G. says:

    Thanks for clearning that up for me. You are a much better authority on social media and its value in the classroom than I am.

  2. I realize that social media can be a tool for a teacher, but I still think it belongs outside of the school day. I want my students to learn to use their verbal skills and learn to ask questions in person. People skills are so important to so many professions that I feel like we are robbing our students of their time to practice those skills if bring in too much technology. I push my shy kids to talk… making sure to call on them as often as possible, and allowing them think time by telling them “I’ll come back to you, have an answer ready” or allowing them to consult with their teammates. If I were to allow them to answer a question via technology, that doesn’t help their social development, it gives them another crutch to lean on. I want to give those students the courage to find their own voice… the one I can hear with my ears and the one that is more powerful than characters on a screen and emoticons. I have no problem using social media to reach my kids beyond school (except the district policy banning such a practice… but that’s another issue), but I don’t believe it has a place in my classroom.

  3. Michael Cowling says:

    Hi Anthony.

    Michael Cowling here, co-author of the linked study. You’ve hit the nail on the head here, and your sentence “Also, if you have a scrolling Twitter page up all the time with the interactions of the students, then you can glance at it while teaching and focus on what they are asking” is actually exactly what we do in the classroom. The purpose here is not to replace students raising their hand, but rather to augment that feedback method with another tool. I’d be happy to e-mail you the full paper if you’re interested; just send me an e-mail to my CQU address.

    Regards,
    Michael.

    • Thank you so much for your comment! I would love to see the full paper. I am one that is interested in trying to get more technology and social networking into my classroom. I feel that it is my responsibility as a teacher to help educate students on proper social networking skills as well as how to use them as tools.

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