All About Twitter Chats
By Ned Colbert
April 2013, Volume 36, Issue 8
Social networking sites such as Twitter have created innovative ways for educators to connect and share ideas. In fact, when surveyed, 61 percent of principals found social networking very valuable for sharing information and resources.
With so many conversations taking place in the Twitterverse, it can be hard for a busy educator to know where to start. Here are a few education-themed Twitter chats that are worth checking out.
Follow specific Twitter conversations by searching for their relevant hashtags (#edchat, #ptchat, etc.). More seasoned users might do well using websites such as TweetChat or TweetGrid, or programs such as TweetDeck or Hootsuite. These tools allow you to organize and keep track of tweets in real time, so you can follow chats more efficiently.
#edchat – Use this hashtag for anything and everything education. Anyone wishing to explore an education related topic can contribute their own ideas, links, or thought-provoking questions. The edchat hashtag can be used anytime, but two major edchat discussions take place every Tuesday, usually around 12 p.m. EDT and 7 p.m. EDT.
#ptchat – The Parent Teacher Chat promotes dialogue between parents and educators. Both groups learn the best ways to communicate and support each other in the common goal of educating children. The chat takes place every Wednesday, at 9 p.m. EDT.
#ntchat – The New Teacher Chat is a great place for those new to the profession. It addresses the needs of new and aspiring teachers, and focuses on advice for practitioners. Participate in this chat to gain insight on the new teacher experience. Chats occur Wednesdays, at 5 p.m. PDT (8 p.m. EDT).
#satchat – This discussion is geared towards current and emerging school leaders, and focuses on topics such as leading with passion, social media in the school setting, leading during a crisis, and supporting struggling teachers. This chat is perfect for early career principals. There are two chats held every Saturday, one at 7:30 a.m. EDT and another at 7:30 a.m. PDT.
#engchat – English teachers gather to join engchat every week and share their ideas, stories, and opinions. Each chat has a guest moderator who brings a unique perspective on teaching English. Engchat takes place every Monday at 7 p.m. EDT.
#mathchat – This twitter conversation provides a forum for mathematics educators and enthusiasts to come together. Whether or not math teachers should give homework, or how to stimulate students seeing connections in mathematics are just a few examples of topics that mathchat addresses. Visit mathschat.wikispaces.com to find more about times and topics.
Ned Colbert is editorial assistant at NAESP.
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