I took a look at “100 Inspiring Ways To Use Social Media In The Classroom,” and right away, number one stood out to me. “Social media may have started out as a fun way to connect with friends, but it has evolved to become a powerful tool for education and business” (2010). Facebook, Twitter, and Skype are now able to connect students with learning opportunities that have never been possible. In the future, I plan on teaching high school English. This website offered many ideas that I had not even thought about applying in my classroom yet.
Below are just a few of the many ways that this site offered to inspire ideas in the classroom using social media.
Number 1: Make Literature Real- “Have students create a Facebook page for a charater for a literature you are studying like this class did.”
This is applicable to my future profession because sometimes the hardest part of reading the “classics” is getting students interested. This is just one of the few ways that students could relate the material they are reading to their personal lives.
Number 2: Follow Famous People–“Many famous people are on Twitter. Have students follow someone related to what you are studying.”
This would be cool to do in an English classroom because student could follow authors of current books that they like to read in their spare time.
Number 27: Answer Questions– “Be available for answering students’ questions via a Facebook page or Twitter feed.”
Why do we still wait until the next class to ask a teacher a question? It is so easy now where we have media that is quicker than email for communication between the teacher and student. This is a great idea to allow students to get the answers they need when they need them. Better and faster communication allows for better and faster learning.
Number 32: Post Notes–“Post class notes on Twitter so students who missed a class can find out what they missed and instructors can refer back to any notes that left.”
This one just makes sense, regardless of what content you teach at the high school level. It keeps the students up to date and relevant on the material.
Number 37: Take Attendance– “Have students tweet one thing you discussed in class as a great way of taking attendance.”
Even if it is a response question at the beginning of class, tweeting any sort of response can also show if a student was tardy, just based on when they tweeted the response! It gives the teacher more time to teach.
Number 40: Post Homework- “Teachers can post homework assignments through Facebook to provide easy access for students and to put the assignment and due date in writing.”
This gives students a level of responsibility to start getting their work in on time. It also allows for the teacher-student role to avoid the, “you said it was due NEXT Tuesday.” This is a great idea.
Number 43: Send Messages and Updates-“From unexpected absences to reminders of upcoming tests, Facebook and Twitter both offer great ways to stay updated on any occurrences.”
This can allow for students that are sick and out for a week or so not to really miss a thing. This is just a good idea regardless.
Number 47: Help Shy Students-“Shy students may feel uncomfortable approaching their teacher in person can use social media as a way to communicate.”
This is a PERFECT way to get the idea of class participation up. Not everyone likes to raise their hand, but that does not mean that they have nothing to say. These students ideas will usually come across in writing, but tweeting and online groups give them a voice they would not otherwise have. It allows them to be apart of a community that they may have felt left out of before.
Number 61: Promote Community- “Students sharing personal information through social media create a sense of community, which leads to a more open communication and better learning.”
A learning community is something that has been discussed so much in all of my education classes and is also a part of my educational philosophy. Creating a safe and enriching learning environment is important for all students to be able to develop intellectually. Anything that creates a stronger sense of community is worth it.
Number 68: Stay Relevant- “Schools moving from an old, skilled-based approach to one that embraces connectivity through social media will provide a better learning environment for students.”
Students should not feel like they are taking steps backwards when walking into a school. Schools need to find ways to stay relevant and to stay current so that students are interested and students actually learn.
I highly recommend that whatever subject you plan on teaching at whatever level, that you give this article a look. It will take you two minutes. I found a crazy idea in under 10 seconds. How long will it take you?