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September 20th, 2013
Social media can help educators improve learning
By Laura Devaney, Managing Editor, @eSN_Laura
Read more by Laura Devaney
Social media tools are effective when used correctly
Teachers hear it all the time: Using social media will help increase professional development opportunities, it will engage students, and it can help students make real-world connections between what they’re learning and future career paths.
But how, exactly, can teachers begin? Some are quite social media-savvy, and others are unsure of where to turn. An infographic containing information from Edudemic, the National Education Association, Facebook, and more serves as a useful social media resource for teachers, curriculum directors, and technology integrators.
Educators can use social media to connect, notify, teach, and curate.
Facebook, one of the most widely-used social media tools, can help teachers improve their communication with students through Facebook group messages or group chats. Teachers can create a Facebook page for a class and can post events, notes, and assignment due dates, and can go one step further and ask students to engage in discussions about what they’re learning.
Through Twitter, teachers can post supplementary materials, such as links to relevant articles and videos, that students can access outside of class on their mobile or home devices. Choosing and using one hash tag with tweets will let students follow a conversation and see every tweet on that topic, as long as the tweet contains the chosen hash tag. Setting up a specific feed this way lets an entire class monitor the discussion–they can even reference older discussions from previous units or semesters.
Twitter also lets teachers and students connect with other students and educators. Maybe more importantly, it can link students with subject matter experts and professionals in certain fields–helping students form links between what they learn in the classroom and where that knowledge can take them in college or the workforce.
(Next page: Take a quick poll on social media use! Plus, view the infographic.)