Twitter for Teaching

10 Ways, and Counting, To Use Twitter for Teaching……….

1.  140 character summary-Grades 3 and up

After reading a selection have students log on to Twitter and write a summary in 140 characters or less.  This forces students to focus on the important elements of the story.

2.  Create a class story-Grades 3 and up

This can be an ongoing project for the year. The teacher can create the prompt and then let the students have at it. You could even set boundaries. Assign students their element of fiction (setting, character, plot, conflict, etc.) and they can only contribute when their element is appropriate. Also a great way for students to practice dialogue.

3.  Collaborate with other classrooms

I am collaborating with a 4th grade teacher in my district to let her students ask my students about their middle school experiences. This is a great reflection opportunity for my students and an opportunity for the 4th grade students to practice their questioning skills.

4.  Summer reading recommendations through the summer for students.

Along with this idea I plan to use TinyChat throughout the summer to hold book talks.

5.  Post daily assignments for students and parents.

Keep parents and absent students up to date on what is happening in the classroom.  You could even assign one student to post a daily reflection.

6.  Question of the day, challenge of the day/week, or warm-up/bell ringers.

7.  Have students Tweet current events and provide a link for further reading.

Or, follow a major news broadcaster such as CNN and have students follow up to the news they tweet.

8.  Book recommendations between peers.

Students will have to be creative in “hooking” their peers into reading since they are limited to 140 characters.

9.  Build classroom community

Allow students to brag on themselves and other students for random acts of kindness.  Be sure to do some bragging yourself, especially for those students who need some extra confidence.

10.  Use TweetStats to randomly compare and contrast Tweeters.

This is especially useful for math.  Students can get practice reading different types of graphs, make predictions based on passed stats and follow up on their predictions.

Please feel free to additional ideas through comments to keep the list growing.

Worried or have reservations about students setting up their own accounts?  Set up a class account where all students use the same username and password.  Stress that students need to provide their name (first name only, or initials) with all posts and posts without names will be deleted. This allows you to maintain the security and privacy of the account.  Set the security settings so you have to approve anyone who wants to follow you.  If you feel the students are not using the account appropriately, you can always delete it.

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