Social Media for Professional Growth

Anyone who knows me knows that I find a lot of value in Twitter. It has been my go-to source for connecting me with inspiring educators around the globe. I have learned from and with technologists in Australia, education department officials in Israel, design thinking teachers in Scotland, teachers and administrators across the North America, mentored student PBL groups in Oklahoma, and even discussed the State of the Union live with students from Philadelphia. Twitter is simply a powerful tool for learning.

WOISD staff have used Twitter to connect their students with authors, politicians, experts in other fields, and even a Holocaust survivor. Their lives have been changed and their learning improved because of a social media tool.

This video gives a quick testimonial on how one school district uses Twitter to make a difference in their classrooms. If you want to get started on Twitter, shoot me a note. If you start this school year modeling for our students how to utilize social media as a learner, you are helping them develop a valuable, lifelong skill.

3 Rules to Spark Learning

If you’ve never watched TED Talk videos, you’re really missing out. They are short, to the point videos about certain topics. In this case, it’s speaking to a crowd of educators dealing with the subjects of engagement, empowerment, and buy-in. Ramsey Musallam, a high school chemistry teacher, encountered a life threatening health experience that had him rethink everything he did in teaching the same students that quite possibly could end up being the people charged with saving his life one day.

Ramsey’s three rules to bring to your lesson planning that may spark learning in your students:

1. Curiosity comes first. “Questions can be windows to great instruction but not the other way around.”

2. Embrace the mess. “Trial and error is still a part of what we do every single day” as both learners and lead learners.

3. Practice reflection. “What we do is important. It also deserves our revision.”