Monday, July 25, 2011

My First Experiences with Twitter Educational Chats

Over the past week or so I've spent most of my days fumbling around the internet following links and blogs I've discovered on Twitter. I've been obsessively reading the #edchat, #elemchat, #bced, #sd36,  and #1stchat.  I narrowed it down to these five because they are nearest and dearest to my heart.  I check in on  #daily5 too.  My education bookmark folder is growing, and continues to grow.  I'm now following several educators that I've never met but have impressed me with what they have to say.

Yesterday and today I took part in two twitter chats - #1stchat (Grade One) and #bced (BC Education).  The topic of the Grade One chat was IPod/IPad use in the classroom.  It was so exciting to see the links and apps that were being shared amongst like minded individuals.  I tried to contribute to the chat too, but since I have neither an IPod nor IPad and my school doesn't have any either it was tough.  But I still followed along and book marked links provided.  I'm glad I stuck around because now I have resources I can turn to to provide information to the parents of my students that DO have the technology.  Plus if and when my school gets IPads or IPods I'll be able to use them right away.  The chat  has me wondering if anyone knows any grants I can apply for so I can get them into my classroom NOW?  You can read the transcript of this chat here.

Today I followed the #BCed chat about personalized learning.  It was an interesting discussion and the variety of opinions added to the discussion.  I'm someone that really believes in personalized learning so to me it's a no brainer.  But it wasn't for everyone.   If you're curious you can read the transcript here.

So... what do I think of these Twitter Educational Chats?

The great:

- I love that like minded individuals take the time to share what they know with complete strangers - I LOVE IT!
- I love that people I don't know and more than likely will never know take the time to moderate these chats
- I love that Wikis have been set up so that I can refer back to these chats, even when I miss them completely
- I love that I'm sitting on my couch, with my favourite shows on in the back ground and I'm professionally learning
- I love that I can ask questions
- I love that I can answer questions

The not as great:

- I can't read, process, and respond quickly enough
- I've been using Tweetdeck to follow these chats and I'm not sure if it's the best way to go
- I keep having to scroll up to see what I'm missing, then I miss more
- Some responses make me angry and I can't do much about it
- Some responses make me super excited and I can't do something fast enough
- I want to say more than what the 140 characters allow me
- I would love to have real conversations with some of these people but I'm not sure if it could/would ever happen

Will I be back for more?  Definitely!!!


  1. I wanted to be involved in the #bced chat tonight, but I was making dinner and being a mom. I am reading the archive right now though.

    It is very exciting to be learning like this! It is getting me ready for getting back to work and getting my head in the game. It's exciting!

    I hope that I will be able to participate in a chat soon!

  2. That should have been a comment from my account, not from Trista's blogger account. ???? Let's try this again....

  3. The twitter conversations are so valuable and at times so frustrating because the sheer volume at times is hard to digest. I think you have to accept that you are going to miss some of it. Not always easy to do. If someone has said something that has impacted you positively you can favourite the tweet and go back to it later, or you can also retweet it if you think it is important to share and it will show up as part of your own tweets.

    I find in these conversations that I usually end up adding up to a dozen new people that I follow and I can always go back to their tweets later if there is something that I want to ask them or comment on.

    Lastly, there is a great way to meet face to face with the people that you have been chatting with. We have a number of edcamps coming up. If you do not know what an edcamp is go to this site:

    There will be an edcamp in Delta in Oct, one in Maple Ridge in Dec, Coquitlam in January, Vancouver Island in March, Vancouver in April with a possibility of a few others coming up. Last year we had just one in Vancouver started by @davidwees and others around Lower Mainland. It was an awesome experience that allowed me to connect with many people I had only spoken to via Twitter. If this interests you please consider signing up, it's free or only costs a few bucks (the Vancouver edcamp cost $5)

  4. Thanks Trista (big wink there)! It's still over whelming but it seems much more manageable now, and having the transcript to go back to really helps.

  5. Remi Collins, thank you for such a great comment. I need to explore the favourites feature, figure out who I want to follow and continue to add them, retweet more, and look more into the local EdCamps. The EdCamps have my interests peeked for certain.