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Distance Learning: Twitter Offers Remote Professional Development

by Lauren Heimlich Foley @lheimlichfoley

Twitter is the best distance learning for teachers!

I resisted Twitter for a long time. Despite what my friends, colleagues, and mentors said, I was not interested in joining another social media. Facebook was enough for me—or so I thought.

In teacher circles, I started to hear Twitter mentioned as a place for online professional development as well as professional networking. Chats, live videos, and events offered online spaces for people to join academic conversations and talk with like-minded individuals. Next came people asking for my Twitter handle. When I said I wasn’t on yet, people were shocked.

Then, for Dr. Famiglietti’s class, Composing in the Attention Economy, joining social media became a requirement. By spring 2020, I felt ready to tackle the Twitter adventure and signed myself up. I began following colleagues, teacher-researchers, and authors. I cultivated my own online professional development community. However, from March to May, I only checked Twitter a few times, and I posted nothing for fear of making a Twitter faux pas.

Once school ended, I decided that summer 2020 would be the season of Twitter. Like any new writing genre, I started to notice people’s tweets and used these posts as mentor texts. I also followed more people and organizations. The amount of information and new ideas surprised me; I had no idea what I had been missing out on.

June 27th marked the date of my first tweet. Since Saturday, I found exciting professional development opportunities and book release information. Here are my top 3 finds:

  • @nErDCampNJ1 tweeted author panel links.
  • @ncte shared that Jason Reynold’s Long Way Down will be a graphic novel.
  • @somaiyadaud posted the release of her 2nd book—Court of Lions which is available August 4, 2020. I have been waiting 2 years for this! Read Mirage first; it is book 1 in the series.

In just 3 days, I have realized that Twitter is the best distance learning for teachers. I am so very excited to be joining the Twitter universe. If you are not on yet, definitely sign up!

2 Comments Post a comment
  1. Welcome to Twitter! Although, I cannot say I am much of a Tweeter. I tend to sit on the sidelines and read and follow various links. It can be like a rabbit hole one just keeps climbing deeper into – a good one. However, I really need to find a way to better curate my Twitter (and participate in meaningful discussions). I often find myself simply overwhelmed and wondering why some of the Tweets on are showing up.

    Like

    June 29, 2020
    • lhfoley #

      Thanks, Warren! I already know what you mean. Currently, I am scanning tweets for reading, writing, and teaching information, particularly pd and ya literature. Perhaps I should set a time limit. 🙂 My goal is to jump into some conversations by the end of July. I would love to hear your thoughts and suggestions. Warmly, Lauren

      Like

      June 30, 2020

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