Social Media in the Classroom - Twitter Pilot

Social media is a great tool to integrate into the classroom and I have experienced with various platforms such as Edmodo, Blogger, Google Sites, Facebook, Skype and most prevalently Twitter. I used Twitter in my practicum classroom back in Ontario and it went over quite well. The students stayed in touch with me and their peers from the ease of their phones and home computers. I was able to send links to the students easily and recommend educational resources related to the topics were were learning about in class.

Last year, I piloted a Twitter program at my school and Hong Kong and did not have as successful of results. Twitter is not popular in Asia and many of the students had never even heard of it before. After the chaos of getting 90 students signed up on the website, I found Twitter not to be very user-friendly for 12 year olds. Unfortunately the students were not very engaged in using Twitter as it was not a form of social media they were interested in using. In addition, we ran into many problems with the students’ inboxes getting spammed with adult content.

In the end, we found other collaborative web 2.0 tools such as Edmodo and Google Docs a better fit for our students. I personally use Twitter to connect with other educators and find it a valuable tools for collecting resources and having conversations with other educators.

For those new to Twitter, see this document about the basics of using Twitter (I made this for my students). Here is a presentation and instructions for signing up to Twitter we presented to the teachers after our pilot project.

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