How I Use It
When I have a question or am looking for a particular resource, one of the tools that I use is asking my PLN through Twitter. By bouncing ideas off of others and seeing what others are doing within their classroom, it leads to be a better teacher for the students.
I have not used it to set up a classroom Twitter account, but by doing so, it would provide an increased audience (possibly Global) for the students. Sometimes you can get a little overwhelmed by the wealth of information, however the benefits greatly outweigh this.
One of the things that I learned about through Twitter was the Global Read Aloud project. Along with other classes, we ended up communicating and sharing our experiences through Twitter. Through this sharing of what others were doing, I was able to do similar activities as those other classes. Another thing that we ended up working on is that we connected our classes to do some shared reading and discussions. Although the students used another tool to collaborate, the initial connection was made through Twitter. The event concluded by having an online chat with the author of the book (Sharon Draper) we were reading, Out of My Mind. Some of the classes did use Twitter to be able to submit questions. Those teachers without access to Twitter used another resource, Today's Meet (that backchannel and communication method was shared with teachers through Twitter.
Twitter has been a great tool to be able that we have been able to use to connect classrooms, teachers, and students.
Twitter provides a platform on which teachers can learn from a professional learning network. They can choose to follow those people and companies that interest them. By doing so, information will flow across their feed (timeline). When they see something that interests them, they can interact with the person or company that posted the information.There is a wealth of information out there and so many people that are willing to share.
Often times, when I have a question, I am able to post a note to Twitter to ask for additional resources. Within minutes, people are sharing what they know and actual experiences that they have used with students.
Another way that Twitter has been beneficial is in the area of professional development. I have learned tremendously from being able to participate in Twitter chats. Here is a complete listing of the educational chats that are available. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AiftIdjCeWSXdDRLRzNsVktUUGJpRWJhdUlWLS1Genc#gid=0 A few that I enjoy following include California Ed Chat (#caedchat), (#21stedchat), and (#patue). Each of these chats occurs at a certain time. There are so many chats out there where different topics are discussed.