I'm pretty new to Twitter as my previous post tells you and I'm just starting to realize the potential power of it as a professional development tool. For most educationalists using twitter, this will be old news but I feel the need to share it anyway.
I teach at a low decile school and you have to be smart about how you do things. I recently caught up with an ex-colleague who is now working in a school at the opposite end of the spectrum. In our conversation, twitter and it's merits were discussed. In parting conversation our plans for the following day were discussed and he took delight in telling of the eLearning conference he was attending the next day.
The next morning I got a text with the #tag address for the conference, "follow us, there are some interesting discussions going on". I just happened to have a free and was able to give a good 10 mins to get a handle on following the conference. For the rest of the day I dropped in and out following the odd post, digging a little deeper when curiosity and time allowed.
It was a bit of a revelation for me. It was like being there for the really important bits. Of course you can't beat actually being there and interacting with like minded people, but it's a pretty close second best.
A recent Twitter post on "What is the problem with professional development" by Courtney Hanes. Here is a little snippet of what she has to say.
"Good professional development, or what I like to refer to as professional growth, is like good teaching, or what I refer to as educating the student. To me, it’s the same as good curriculum — planning without a plan, structured, yet flexible, applicable, relevant, and engaging. I have been inspired by a few examples in my 14 years of teaching. Most of the good examples occur when I seek them out myself. I learn more when I want to, when I am curious, when I have a mentor guiding and supporting me, and when the passion and questions posed inspire true change in my heart. Being educated and growing must be ongoing, and must aim to achieve excellence rather than mediocrity. Just like our students, we do not want our time wasted, and we do not want impersonal, standardized material."
For me, Twitter and crashing conferences on Twitter allows me to that.
Some of the best PD discussions are had in the staffroom over a coffee. My posts are intended to be like one of those conversations. Feel free to join the conversation, we just might help each other out. My opinions are my own.