Sunday, September 6, 2015


Part of this weekend's TO DO list included brainstorming a list of questions that could be used this week in the Twitter Chat.  I'm co-moderating again on Tuesday.  Despite what some may think, there is actually a process that includes brainstorming a topic, generating and refining questions, and then publicizing the topic to lure teachers to the discussion.  

Quite frankly, it's like planning a party and inviting an unlimited number of people, and then worrying for the first ten minutes if the only people who are going to show are you and your two best friends.

The  format for the discussion basically works like this:

1.  Moderators brainstorm topics, and suggest questions on a shared googledoc.
2.  Questions are discussed, refined, combined, and finalized.
3.  The amazing Beth creates a s'more poster that can be pushed out in multiple tweets, and shared online in other social media venues that includes the topic and the question.
4.  The "usual" participants tweet, retweet, favorite, and post about the event, hoping to convince others to join in.  

Given the fact that the #reflectiveteacher chat includes moderators from around the world, times are listed for a variety of time zones.  The global perspective often offers greater discussion, and all sorts of additional research after the chat is over.

The biggest challenge for me is to limit my comments to 140 characters, which includes the hashtags and people to whom I am directing responses.  Brevity has become my best friend, while trying to communicate something as complicated as educational strategies or philosophy.

Yet I am strangely drawn to this new practice.  My PLN is widening, and I am connecting and learning in a way I've never learned before.  It's something new, and I'm sure it won't be the last "something new" I try, in my ever-constant challenge to connect with professionals as well as students, making meaningful outcomes for all.

So consider trying something new this week.  Heck, if you're not sure what, register for Twitter, and join me (and Beth!) on Tuesday night at 7 pm EDT (6 pm CDT, 11 am New Zealand), and follow the conversation at #reflectiveteacher.

It's an acquired taste, but you'll never know if it is for you if you don't, at least, try.

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