Sunday, November 18, 2012

Three Emerging Roles Twitter Plays in My Class: FIeld Trips

Continuing to share the emerging role Twitter plays in my 8th grade classroom, I want to share something I only stumbled upon last week. Our 8th grade social studies teachers organized a visit from a Civil War reenactment group who honors the 6th Pennsylvania Infantry Irish Regulars.

They came to our school and set up five stations outside: women in the Civil War, camp life, marching, enlistment, and artillery. For two hours, groups of our students cycled through station on the blustery Pennsylvania morning.

While listening to the women speak at the first session, I thought...why not live tweet the information these people are sharing? Our kids are listening, participating, and engaged...but no one is taking any notes.

I can take notes with Twitter. And I did.

I wrote down everything and anything. Knowing that our school's Twitter feed was live on our school website I also wanted to link my personal/profession Twitter account into that feed.

So, in the midst of keeping up with the Tweets, I texted our I.T. professional.  He loved the idea and then had to figure out how to connect what I was doing the school account (we know there are simple solutions but this was happening on the spur of the moment). He followed me with the school account, and then simply retweeted my Tweets.

Next week, we will be visited by a Lakota Indian who will share his culture and challenges with our students. I will also be live tweeting that guest visit.

This strikes me as valuable for parents, and potentially valuable for kids who may have missed school, but I find my instincts tell me it is most valuable as a model of using social networking in a responsible and positive way. I shared our experience with anyone who reads our website, and anyone who reads my tweets.

Information is power. And we are beginning see where the bulk of information is...and will contnue to be in the future. It leaves me wondering, what about those who do not have access to technology.

Will they not have access to information?

Or power?

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