3 Things Teachers Can Do to Get More Out of Twitter

A lot can happen in 140 characters

teachers on twitter

You’ve started to hang out on Twitter a little bit and want to start using it to connect with other teachers on Twitter (here are a bunch of great ones to follow), to really start learning. What should your next steps be? Here are three ideas you can implement tonight:

1. Retweet articles that you think are important or valuable.

Retweeting is super-easy. If you see an article or tweet that you think is important, interesting or worth repeating, simply hit the retweet button. The original tweet will be shared with your followers as a retweet. You don’t even have to add anything to the tweet. Your retweet could be what sparks a conversation between you and another educator.

2. Let someone know when their work has helped you by tweeting them.

Did you find a great lesson idea or teaching strategy as you were browsing Twitter? Did you use a lesson plan idea from a blogger on Pinterest? Find out the blogger’s Twitter name (usually listed near the top of their blog) and tweet a quick thank-you to them.

“Used your Dr. Seuss lesson ideas in my class today. They were fab! Thx! @BestPreKTeacher”

Make sure you “tag” the person you’re tweeting by writing their Twitter name after the @ symbol.

3. Participate in a Twitter chat.

If you’re feeling especially brave, join a Twitter chat. Chances are good there’s one happening tonight that covers a topic you’re interested in. Chats are easier now and often happen in a Q&A format. The leader of the chat posts a question. For example, they might post:

Q1: How do you keep kids engaged in your classroom?  #TheNameOfTheChat

Your tweet in response could be:

A1: I try to use “brain breaks” throughout the day.  #TheNameOfTheChat.

This way, if you search for #TheNameOfTheChat hashtag, you’ll see the questions and all of the replies. You can find chats for almost any topic in education. Look for grade-level chats and subject-area chats to get your feet wet. Here are a few different chats that are fun and welcoming:

#Nt2t: New Teachers to Twitter: Here’s a chat for teachers who are specifically trying to get better at Twitter.

#ElemMathChat

#engchat: English teachers chat

#sschat: Social studies teachers chat

#kinderchat: Kindergarten teachers chat

Don’t see one you like? Here’s a list of over 200 more to check out:

List of Weekly Twitter Chat Times

Do all of these tips feel a little too advanced for your current Twitter skill level? Don’t worry. Twitter can be a hard social media platform to master. Check out these posts for Twitter beginners:

The Edublogger’s Guide to All Things Twitter

Twitter for Beginners

Twenty Essential Twitter Rules You’ve Probably Never Heard

Finally, don’t forget to follow We Are Teachers on Twitter for more amazing teaching ideas.

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Posted by Karen Nelson

Karen is a Senior Editor at WeAreTeachers. She's also a former elementary school teacher who loves teaching with technology.

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