On Twitter? Next Stop Voxer
By Rick Jetter and Rebecca Coda
May 2018, Volume 41, Issue 9
Technology now enables school leaders in even the most remote districts to connect with innovative educators around the globe. School leaders now leverage both personal and professional relationships on platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Voxer.
While Voxer wasn’t originally intended for educators, it has become a go-to app for educators and school leaders. With a text feature and walkie-talkie voice activation, you can utilize this application as part of a PLN communication tool. Texting can be used silently in any environment; the walkie-talkie feature permits users to converse with their new colleagues and friends. Here’s how to get started using Voxer to feed your professional learning.
1. Most Voxer groups stem from Twitter content feeds or can be found via Twitter.
2. Customize your search. Type “Voxer” into the Twitter search bar. There, you will find some ideas on whom to connect with or inquire about Voxer groups. Some groups are long-term and some are short term, such as book study Voxer groups or slow chat Voxer forums where you can learn almost anything at your leisure—when you are able to tune in to Voxer.
3. Some long-standing Voxer groups that currently exist for school leaders and other educators are:
- Principals in Action
- Dads as Principals
- Prevailing Leaders
- P12 Leaders
4. When you search for some of these keywords, you can easily find out who moderates or is the lead administrator involved with the many Voxer groups that are out there. If you cannot find that information, send a tweet out and use hashtags relevant to the theme or topic of your search. Almost always, someone will respond and point you in the right direction.
5. Keep a close eye on @The EdSquad and @Eduvoxers, as they compile up-to-date master lists of all known Voxer groups for educators.
6. If you are interested in book study Voxer groups, you can search the title of the book to see whether there is any Voxer action already going on or you can inquire with the author to see what is happening with their particular book. If a book study Voxer group doesn’t exist, let the author know that you would love to even set one up for them yourself! This is a great way to connect with other educators and authors!
7. Check out any Twitter chat hashtags in your region or state for educational social media forums. Often, educational Twitter chat moderators for each state also have their own Voxer group, such as #MEMSPA—a group of amazing leaders in Michigan.
8. The more you connect on social media, the more you discover new groups that use Voxer as a tool to bring others together. It is also important to think about connecting with Voxer groups even if you do not hold a particular position or title in the field of education. We belong to iSupt (a group of superintendents across the nation), and we are not superintendents. But, boy, do we learn a lot from this Voxer group!
9. Consider creating your own Voxer group for your school, school district, or region. Use social media to gather followers and script out a few ideas of topics that you are passionate about. You will soon see other like-minded professionals gravitate toward your topics—especially if they are positive and constructive ideas that can help others to collaborate with more amazing educators and leaders.
10. Last, but not least, your learning and growth all depend on how active and involved you are. Don’t let social media overwhelm you. Social media relationships, like other relationships, take time to grow and nurture. And most of all … have fun meeting and learning new things!
Rick Jetter is an author, speaker, and education consultant.
Rebecca Coda is director of K–6 curriculum and instruction at Cabot Public Schools in Arkansas.
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