Twitter It, Just a Little Bit!

Education Twitter chats continue to grow in popularity because of the professional learning that
takes place. These Twitter chats happen at designated time, use a hashtag, and discuss a topic
of interest. Many educators begin slowly in the world of Twitter, but quickly realize the power of
the platform and the connections that are made. I have connected with people from all over the
world and have even hired speakers for my live events based on their engagement in Twitter.

Recently, I was listening to a podcast and Dave Burgess, author of Teach Like a Pirate, was the
featured guest. I was amazed as he talked about marketing and the grass roots effort regarding
his “TLAP”(Teach Like a Pirate) movement. Dave grew his following by presenting at
conferences and literally recruiting people to attend his session. He paid for his own expenses
and even paid the conference registration. Boy, those conference organizers were getting a
deal…Dave Burgess free of charge! Dave’s presentations grew and then the book, Teach Like
a Pirate, was born. Then, his Twitter Chat was the brainstorm of someone who had coordinated
a book study and used the hashtag to connect others, and the chat took off like a rocket. Now,
#TLAP is known for creativity, engagement, and practical teaching ideas to promote student
learning.

Twitter is a way to gain new ideas, resources, and techniques and a place to expand your
professional learning network. My friend, Connie Hamilton, started a Twitter chat with the
hashtag #TMchat for over two years. During that time, she built her professional learning
network to thousands of followers. Connie, along with a guest, posed insightful questions and
followed up with amazing graphics and resources. Connie is now recognized as a national
consultant and is even working with Doug Fisher and Nancy Frey. I always knew that Connie
was a foreword thinking educator, but Twitter allowed her a place to share her knowledge and to
flourish.

If you are new to Twitter, try using a tool like TweetChat, TweetDeck, or Hootsuite to follow a
chat. This will help you follow along a little easier. Once you are comfortable within a chat, you
may want to begin to use the tools to schedule tweets.

Lurking is okay too! Lurking is when you follow the discussion, but do not participate in the chat.

Educators are always happy to have new participants in the chat, so you can let them know this
is your first time if you would like.

I felt overwhelmed the first chat I was participating in, it moves so fast I could not keep up the
pace! I remember feeling stress and uncertainty, but do not worry about this, you will still catch
a lot of the discussion and most chats are archived. Typically, at the end of the chat, you will
see where it is archived, if not you can do a Google search.

One of my goals for 2018 is to participate more in Twitter Chats! It is an excellent way to
continue to grow and learn as an educator! So, I challenge you to “Twitter it, just a little bit”…get
on some Twitter chats this year and connect with those educators, you will be so happy that you
did!

Some popular Twitter Chats to get you started..
#edchat is an active Twitter chat that is on Tuesdays at 12pm and 7pm Eastern Standard Time. This
chat attracts a variety of educators to discuss topics in education.

#TLAP is an upbeat chat that focuses on creativity, inspiration, and improving learning. This chat was
inspired by the book, Teach Like a Pirate, and is full of energy, just like the author, Dave Burgess. If you
select this one, will see you there this year! #TLAP is on Monday nights at 9:00pm Eastern
Standard Time

#DENchat – is the Discovery Educator Network chat. Mark your calendar for Thursdays at
8:00pm Eastern Standard time if interested.

#edtechchat is if you are interested in using technology in the classroom. This chat is at 8:00pm
Eastern Standard Time on Monday evenings.

#satchat is a chat for current and emerging school leaders. The chat takes place Saturday
mornings at 10:30am Eastern Standard Time.

Here is a link to any education chat that your heart desires! Be sure to check out the chats that
interest you and the times. You can hone in on specific grade levels, subject areas and more!
There are leadership chats for administrators as well. If you have any questions, please contact
me at info@ifireup.com

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