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Being Connected

October 3, 2013 by Mrs Hurley   

I am feeling a little small and insignificant today. In my chatting with other educators at last night’s Teach Meet (Thanks @charte – had a great time!) I mentioned that I had only attended one other Teach Meet before. Thinking about it, I would never had heard of Teach Meet in the first place had I not joined Twitter a few months ago. I can’t actually remember when I joined, I think it was the Easter holidays this year. Does anyone know how I can find out? I’m curious.

Anyway, it got me to thinking. I saw a lot of teachers last night who had given up their own time on their holidays to further their knowledge in Education. Although last night’s crowd was mostly younger (Margo said it, not me!) surely a lot of attendees would have kids and families at home? Yet they still make the time and effort to travel – some even from the country! – to listen to a bunch of other teachers talking and learning from their peers.

Many teachers are constantly making the efforts to improve their teaching and to improve the education, knowledge and lives of the students that they teach. When I first joined Twitter, I couldn’t and still can’t believe the amount of teachers and educators on Twitter who are so willing to share and engage in meaningful conversations.

Having a Twitter account is  like having your own school and who you follow is like choosing your staff. Your Twitter feed is like listening to conversations in the staffroom. I just love that you get to choose which ones to tune into and participate in!

But what of teachers who aren’t on Twitter? Or connected in any other way? How important is it to be a connected educator? Tom Whitby has written extensively on the subject. One such post can be found here. He explains himself much better than I do, so I highly recommend you head over and have a read!

How are you connected? What are the benefits for you personally? What are the benefits for your classroom?


6 Comments »

  1. Mary Bennett says:

    Thanks for your post, it’s great to here how others are progressing. I have a twitter account but I don’t use it much and I don’t feel connected with it yet. I’ve been concentrating on the blogs and spaces that twitter has been put on the back burner. However, I hear what you are saying and am sorry that I missed the teacher meet. Was that an online Teacher Meet? I intend to explore twitter more from here on.

    I’m a newbie, and I’m feeling quite challenged at times, but mostly I’m really excited about the way technology is changing our perceptions, ways of doing things, and how we teach generally. I like the idea of connecting with people outside of our workplaces. Today I met up with John Pearce and others to further our skills and use in Global2. Apparently there was a google drive seminar today that a number of teachers went to who belong to the TL21C community. Proof of the way we are always improving our teaching during the hols.

    • Miss Fraser says:

      Hi Mary,
      Thanks for taking the time to have a read and leave a comment or two!
      I certainly almost gave up on Twitter – I felt I wasn’t involved with it enough. The key is to read through the conversations and just jump in – don’t fear that you can’t comment because you weren’t specifically invited. People then get to know you a bit more and will often invite your opinion. Also, getting involved in chats on Twitter is a good way to get more followers and become involved in other conversations.
      Twitter is also where I found out about TeachMeets. A very basic explanation is that you sign-up to either present or watch other teachers give a 2 or 7 minute presentation on any topic. The next one is on the 26th of October at Sovereign Hill and you can find the Wiki here: http://teachmeetmelbourne.wikispaces.com/
      Can I ask how long you have been teaching? Being a young teacher myself, I find that I’ve kind of grown-up with technology and implementing it in my classroom just makes sense to me. That being said, I certainly have only scratched the surface of all the possibilities!
      The Melbourne GAfE Summit was held on Thursday and Friday at Yarra Valley and I am absolutely kicking myself that I didn’t sign up! I will just have to steal notes from those who attended… Again, the power of Twitter – being able to connect with like-minded educators (those who further their own knowledge during their ‘holidays’) and steal their notes! 😉
      Keep up your journey. I’d love to read more about it if you get your own blog up and running too!
      Katelyn 🙂

  2. Tom Whitby says:

    Nicely said, and thank you for the recommendation. I will be following you as well.

    • Miss Fraser says:

      Hi Tom,
      Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to read. I feel honoured!
      I certainly can’t explain myself as eloquently as you do but reading your posts are very thought provoking so thank you.
      Katelyn 🙂
      P.S. Thanks for the follow too!

  3. Celia Coffa says:

    Katelyn
    I think we all feel insignificant in the big picture but what being connected does for me is allow me to see how what I think fits in with what others think. I love the feeling of like mindedness I get from people I meet at Teachmeets, but I love the challenges I get from them as well. We come from such a diverse backgrounds, work in a variety of sectors and institutions, but still find a commonality.
    I love your description of Twitter – very apt. I love it but struggle to explain it to people – it seems to be one of those things you just have to give a go !
    Thanks for sharing !

    Celia
    ccoffa.edublogs.org

  4. Heather says:

    Hi Katelyn,
    I love Twitter too. When people ask me how do I have time for it I liken it to the radio – it’s always happening but you don’t have to turn it on; you don’t try to catch up on what you miss; you can listen closely and engage with what is going on or just have it in the background. I would hate not to feel connected in this way.
    I’m also a really big fan of teachmeets and it’s the fact that they are totally voluntary that makes them great – everyone is there because they want to be, full stop! I always learn something new to try or think about and have some great conversations with people I may or may not have met before (in person or online).
    You asked how you can tell how long since you signed up for Twitter. Using Hootsuite on a PC, when you click on a twitter name you get a summary about that person (bio, no. tweets. no. followers etc.) and also when they joined – it says you joined on Sat Apr 27 03:54:35 +0000 2013 (think you need to add 10 hours for the correct time).
    Cheers,
    Heather @hbailie

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