Twitter is an online news, and social networking service where users share information by posting messages known as “tweets.” Because of the 280 character limit, some recognize Twitter as micro-blogging. It is a quick and effective way to send and receive real-time updates. A tweet can be just text, or it can include an image, video, GIF, poll/survey, and the precise location of where the tweet is posting.
Many educators already use a variety of social media. With that being said, “Why use Twitter?” It is a fantastic tool to grow your Personal Learning Network (PLN) — your “flock”. Chris Malanga’s featured article last week discussed the importance of creating a PLN. He even shared some of his favorite like-minded educators and techies to follow.
As a way to begin using Twitter, you can search for some of his recommendations and also, educators that interest you. It is great fun to hear what others are saying about a topic of interest and to join the conversation.
Before creating an account, you will want to create a Twitter handle or personal ID. The Twitter handle begins with an @. It can be creative or a means of showcasing your interests. My Twitter handle is R11X. When my sister and I turned 16 years old, our maternal grandfather let us drive his 1970 black Impala convertible. The license plate was…
I like the anonymity R11X and tend to use it for most of my social media handle/usernames. Your handle will appear in your profile…
and also, in the URL.
Once you know what you want your Twitter handle to be, you are ready to create an account.
- You will need to visit twitter.com and click on Sign Up.
- Next, you will be required to complete the form. Once your account is created, you can customize your profile by clicking on the Edit profile button.
Settings and Privacy
You can change handle, password, email, and notifications from Settings and privacy.
PLN: Finding and Following Your Flock
- Alec Couros video explains how to develop a PLN using Twitter
- Using Twitter’s search bar, enter the name, handle or topic you are searching for
- How to grow your PLN
Compose a Tweet
- From your Profile page
- Or, from your Timeline
Reply to a Tweet
- If you want to comment on someone’s tweet, click on the reply button.
- Your reply tweet will appear in your profile page timeline.
Retweet a Tweet
You may want to retweet someone’s post to share on your timeline.
Mention Someone in a Tweet
What is a Hashtag?
Twitter hashtags are created by placing a # in front of a word or phrase, without spaces. The # helps categorize tweets and makes posts easier to find. The goal is to get people to use the same hashtag to discuss a specific topic. For example,
Classroom Activities Using Twitter
- Review a lesson with a Twitter Scavenger Hunt
- Tweet as a Historic Figure
- Poll your students or Twitter followers
- Show off your classroom by live tweeting
- Have students post summaries of lessons
Hope you enjoy using Twitter as much as I do. In the beginning, you may feel more comfortable using it as a news feed. Within time, you will find yourself joining the conversation by retweeting and replying to tweets and posting tweets of your own. Have fun tweeting!