One of the plans for the summer is to work on my tech skills. With technology today there is always something new to learn, improve or master! The more I learn, the more I can teach. Or teach with. So, I’ve bookmarked several free online courses with my Google bookmarks and in delicious.
This past weekend, I spent way more time than usual on Twitter, this time following the events in Iran instead of working on some of those courses. I felt so connected to the events and individuals who are in the midst of this historic event through their tweets. Information is coming unfilted, while CNN and MSNBC are rather quiet while waiting to verify sources and sanitize the information. For me, the way I receive news has certainly changed!
I broke from this intense blend of narratives, pictures and video by switching back to the regular mix of friends I follow. Among the information there, I found Starter Sheets. These are nice little sheets developed to help educators develop 2.0 skills. The pages have been uploaded to a wiki so that more can be written and added with the classroom teacher in mind. Simple instructions are provided so that the sheets all follow the same basic format. An essential element is that classroom implications are included in the usage.
The sheet I inspected was the Twitter sheet. So many people have an interest in Twitter these days, yet it has one of the most un-user-friendly sites on the ‘net! And, I’m noticing that the Starter Sheet for Twitter stops giving directions right where people get lost! It’s pretty easy to get registered, but then, you have this blank home page and no directions. What to do??
- Decide how u want to use Twitter. Do you want to become the most popular person on the planet? Make professional connections? Get great deals from your favorite stores? Get the latest entertainment, political and/or world news?
- Look over there in the right-hand column. Click on my Twitter link and add me as a friend. Do the same on all your favorite blogs.
- Work through the tabs to decorate your page and upload a photo.
- Use the “find people” tab to upload contacts from your address book.
- You can manually enter friends, but it can be really tricky finding people you know. Enter their full name, often with no spaces. Make friends with Mr. Tweet and he’ll use your profile to help you find new friends.
- When you make friends, see who their friends are. Borrow them!
From there, one can find numerous applications to make Twitter work for you. You can use the Twitter home page to get updates from your friends, but most people don’t. Many people use Tweet Deck. I prefer the Tweet Grid. There are applications that allow you to tweet more than 140 characters, send photos, add Twitter to your Gmail page (I love that!!), add Twitter to your toolbar, to your blog, to your cell phone…….
And this was one of my goals for the summer. To teach Twitter. I hope this helps someone! Now, to put this on a powerpoint so that the visuals can make it more meaningful!