Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Week 7 - Social Networking with Facebook and Twitter

You can't go anywhere online without seeing logos and links asking you to "follow me on Facebook and Twitter". Social networking sites have impacted the way we connect with friends, family, businesses, parents and students.
Using social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter in education is definitely a "hot button" topic. As most of you know, last year Missouri tried to establish a law to regulate how teachers and students would be able to interact on these types of sites. Like many online tools, Facebook and Twitter in education have their pros and cons. Your tasks for week 7 ask you to look at these two sites and consider how they could (or if they should) be used in an educational setting.
Note: Some of these resources will not be able to be viewed at school since Facebook is blocked at school. (Think about why it is blocked at most schools.) You will need to view them when you are at home or at a public Internet access area like a local library.
Thing 16 - Explore the use of Facebook in education
Read the following articles on using Facebook in Education. Think of how or why you might use Facebook in your job (or even your personal life). Be sure to consider any disadvantages to using this site.
Our school district does have a Facebook page, as do many school groups and activities. If you want to have an official school Facebook page, you have to add Becky Hartzell and Jeremy Lampe as administrators of your page to help monitor any unwanted activity on your page. Here are some examples of Facebook pages being used in our district:
If you don't have a Facebook page, you might consider signing up for one and exploring the possibilities. This is definitely an optional activity.
Thing 17 - Explore the use of Twitter in education
Watch the following videos and look at the sites about using Twitter in education. Again, think of how or why you might use Twitter in your job (or even your personal life). Be sure to consider any disadvantages to using this site.
  • Why Teachers Should Try Twitter - an article that states some reasons why a teacher might want to use Twitter
  • Twitter4Teachers - a database of teachers who you can follow on Twitter (if you have a Twitter account, you might follow some teachers with similar interests)
  • Check out how Branson High School uses Twitter on its website.
If you do not have a Twitter account, consider signing up for one and giving it a try for a couple of weeks to see if you find it useful. This is also an optional task.
Reflection task: 
Comment on this post and share your thoughts about Facebook and Twitter in education. Be sure to consider the pros and cons to using these sites. Make sure you sign your name to your comment.


  1. Social Networking in Education.
    I am a big proponent of communicating with parents in a method that is convenient for them. However, I also believe that it has to be safe for students, teachers and parents. I question the use of Facebook in education. Most of my 6th graders are not legally allowed to have a Facebook account so I would solely be communicating with the parents. I like Remind101 and the email features of SIS for communicating. Of course this is mostly one way communication. I think that the building, district, and LMC are much better avenues for Facebook at the Elementary level. The secondary level is a whole 'nother thing!
    I think like so many new technologies in the world, the power is all how it is being used. I know several people who refuse to get Facebook accounts, including my husband, because they don't see the point or have heard of so many personal problems stemming from Facebook's use
    I really like Twitter. I guess you could say I am a Twitter stalker, after recently having my personal account hacked, I feel very uneasy about posting and have become very specific about who I follow. However, I follow several in-district people on Twitter. I love the High School's Twitter account. It keeps me very up to date on my son's activities. I also follow Dr. Hayter and the admin team, which is quite helpful. Dr. Brenner is great at sharing ed tech resources. So that is from a gathering resources/information standpoint. As far a communication tool, If I didn't utilize other sources or if I felt like I had a wider audience as a coach or sponsor of a group, I would absolutely use Twitter.

  2. Social Networking-

    I am a fan of using twitter. I actually utilize two accounts. I have my personal twitter. On this one, I will follow those that I want. Generally, I use it to follow blogs, news, and particular people that I find interesting. Some of those are school related, others are related to my other interests. I also use it to follow specific # threads. In particular, I use #sschat a lot. I also have a twitter for school. I post information about class and athletics on that one. This one I am a lot more restricted with. I understand the pain of being hacked, as it has occurred once. It was my own fault for not using a more difficult password.

    As for Facebook...I hate it. I can see a use for schools. It is nice having a page. However, I rarely actually log in to my Facebook any longer. In my opinion, it is slowly on the way out, much like MySpace. Mary and I stay on it, mostly to keep family abreast with the happenings of Roman. Beyond that, I'm not on Facebook long enough to really use it for education.

  3. Social Networking-
    I have too many accounts personal/educational so I don't want to use Facebook for both. Elementary kids are too young to use it and most jr high/high school kids don't use it any more since 'parents & grandparents invaded it'. LOL Like Melody I use Remind 101 for important info that needs to go out.
    Now Twitter is a different story! LOVE IT. So it is worth having a personal 1 and a classroom account as well. We try and tweet after each grade level meets for the week. They love seeing pictures of themselves along with what they felt was the most important thing of the day. I have it linked to direct feed into my classroom website as well so parents don't have to have a Twitter account to see what we post there. I use my personal account as my PLN. I learned SO much this summer and it was all through Twitter. It was probably what got me super excited about coming back to school this year.

  4. Social Networking -
    I do not use social networking for my 9th grade American History class. The high school uses Blackboard and I feel that is all that these 9th grade students really need. Facebook and twitter can become distracting and Blackboard is a simple and safe way to communicate with my students. I do have a twitter account for the High School wrestling team! It is very useful to help communicate with the wrestlers as far as bus times, schedule updates, snow days, etc... I also only follow other wrestling handles that I can retweet different pictures, motivational sayings, quotes, college updates, etc... The only resource I use for both my classroom and wrestling team besides blackboard is Remind 101. This site has been the best thing for me as far as communicating to the masses instantly. I do not have a personal twitter account but I do have a personal Facebook account. I have often been tempted to get a personal twitter account but I am also trying to get away from social media. I feel that too much time is wasted these days with social media so I am actually trying to cut back and not keep adding on (in my personal life). I will keep pushing forward with using technology and social media in my class and sports teams but limit the time I spend on social media.

    TOO MANY PASSWORDS AND LOGIN USERNAMES! Another reason to cut down on some social media. You need a login and password for just about everything these days. I have an app on my phone called Password Keeper. It does a great job keeping all that organized. It is worth looking into if you have that problem. All you need to remember is the password to that app and it keeps all login and password info remembered for you.

    I will keep pushing forward as far as keeping up with the latest technology and websites, I just want to limit what I use to about 2 or 3 things and perfect what I use. Not have a billion sites that I struggle to keep up with.

  5. Facebook and Twitter definitely are valuable tools but I am not sure about using them with my students since most of them are not legal age yet to use them. As a teacher/educator I use Facebook and Twitter to connect with other people. My Facebook account is more personal friends or co-workers. I use Facebook for who I want to keep up with on a personal level and know more about. Twitter is more of a professional tool for me. I do have some friends on Twitter but I don't post reguarly instead I use it to find resources. Most of the people I follow on Twitter include literacy or technology consultants and presenters. I see links, pictures and ideas they share on their Twitter. I love searching the hashtags for ideas for lessons. I know these aren't the only ways to use it but these are the ways I have used it so far.

  6. Social Networking
    I am a fan of Facebook but only on a personal level.
    Twitter looks interesting and seems to be useful for following experts in the field of literacy. So I will consider using Twitter.
    I am uncomfortable with the use of Facebook at the professional level because of the privacy issues. I can see the value of like-minded professionals sharing ideas on social media. The benefits of people collaborating and problem solving together is always positive. However, I fear that statements could be taken out of context or misunderstood and this can be problematic. Another concern would be that misinformation can be posted and this could cause confusions about theory and best practices.