Whether you’re new to the Twitter game or a seasoned pro, there’s always something to learn. Teachers know that better than anyone. Learning is a lifelong process and figuring out social media is no different. I was pretty excited to come across this handy chart of quick tips for teachers using Twitter because it showcases the A-to-Z tips which will help you get off to a good start. Literally. It’s an A-to-Z walkthrough. Pretty good.
In this graphic from Fedena (a school management software maker), you’ll likely spot more than a few tips you already know. However, you should be able to discover a couple new ones that will help you up your Twitter game. For example, I really like the second tip on how to properly use Twitter. There’s certainly a level of etiquette you should follow. Don’t be spammy. Don’t over-tweet or overshare, and don’t take credit for someone else’s work. That’s a super handy tip to always keep int he back of your mind whether you’re talking about social media or just life in general!
The graphic is slightly outdated so I took the liberty of rewriting some of the tips in text form. The graphic references things that Twitter (the company) has since changed. For example, you don’t need to worry about using quotations instead of writing ‘RT’ or ‘retweet’ because the Twitter platform makes it much easier to retweet and add a quote. Stuff like that.
In any case, enjoy the tips and hopefully they help you improve your social media game but also take your professional learning to the next level.
Your account, also known as your username or handle, is what defines you on Twitter. Many teachers use Twitter for professional networking and engaging with others on topics being discussed around the world.
2. Big No-Nos
Twitter isn‘t about you. Don’t spam. Seriously. Don’t take credit for the intellectual property of someone else or any property that is not yours. If you aren’t getting followers, improve the content you share, don‘t buy your followers. Pretty simple rule. Just be a high-quality user and good things will happen. That’s my personally-proven and time-tested tip 🙂
Twitter is all about collaboration. Connect with others and co-run a hashtag chat (scroll down to the letter ‘H’ for more on hashtags) to get more engaged and collaborating.
4. Direct Messages
Direct messages are a great way to, you guessed it, directly connect with others. It’s like privately emailing someone else on Twitter. The other bonus is that the character limit is much higher so you don’t need to subscribe to the 140 character limit normally found in tweets.
One of the first educational chats and one of the most used. #edchat is held on Tuesdays from 12 to 1 and 7 to 8 pm EST, #edtechchat takes place on Mondays from 8 to 9 pm EST. What are you waiting for, Join the conversation!
6. Favorite / Liking
Favoriting or liking (they recently made this a heart rather than a star icon) a tweet helps you archive tweets which share information or links you might be interested in or you might just simply like what they say.
Twitter allows you to share your magic with only 140 characters and while adhering to that rule, your grammar might really get tested. Try installing the Grammarly Plugin on your web browser to help keep your language on point. Great learning opportunity for students and teachers alike!
Themes, common words, trending topics are often covered in just a few or single words. Some of the most used HashTags among Teachers are #EdChat, #EdTech, #Elearning, BYOD (Bring Your Own Device). These should help you get in on the conversation.
Add flavor to your stories and conversations by adding vibrant, informative images to engage your followers at a visual level.
Use Twitter as your personal micro-journal, for your classroom adventures, experiments. Use your account to share stories. I’d recommend keeping these accounts as private so they remain a private journal rather than a Twitter account that isn’t engaging with others.
Knowledge is power. Practice it by sharing it with the world. Learn from other teachers & educators, develop a PLN – Personal Learning Network.
One of the most underused tools of Twitter and yet one of the most useful ones. Use lists to group and sort people/handles based on your customized filters.
13. Muted Accounts
Helpful when you want to avoid handles and users who are a nuisance to conversations and learning. Just head over to your settings, enter the username and enjoy Twitter without ever hearing from them again.
The notifications tab is a good way to keep track of how well you are doing with your followers and influencers. It lets you know who followed you, favorite-ed your tweet, retweeted you. Keep an eye out maybe someone famous follows you!
15. One Hundred and Forty
Twitter only allows you to type in 140 characters. Be smart, concise and creative.
16. Protected Accounts/ Private Accounts
These are accounts of people who would like to approve who can see their content. These accounts are privacy protected and you will have to ask for permission to follow them.
Sometimes users like to quote other tweets rather than retweeting them directly. This is mostly done to comment along with the tweet, try quoting to see how it helps you engage in a conversation or maybe even start one!
Retweeting is as essential as tweeting on Twitter. It shows the kind of articles people you follow like to read. Retweets also help in giving authorship to intellectual properties which don’t belong to you.
Craft an interesting story for your followers. Use Storify to craft a creative story using a series of tweets and keep your followers engaged!
A tweet helps you interact with your PLN, your followers, your influencers and with the web in general. So keep tweeting as much as you can.
As an educator and teacher, you have embarked on a journey of learning and teaching. But sometimes, to learn something new, you have to unlearn what you know to get the best out of what’s new!
22. Verified Accounts
The identities of these accounts have been verified by Twitter. Mostly companies and celebrities get it done, so take caution while engaging with verified accounts.
Missed out on one of the EdChat or EdtechChat, no worries, edtechchat.wikispaces.com archives all the chats and even has a podcast which discusses all the topics from the week.
Sometimes it helps to make pop culture references to your conversations to connect with people, like we just did here, X- Men fan anyone?
Start by saying yes to all the ideas and conversation which make you feel uncomfortable, decide only after you have practiced or taken part in an in-depth discussion with the user(s).
Tweet with all the zest you can, talk to other teachers and pump up your PLN with all the zest you can muster. It’s important that your influencers and followers know how dedicated you are to teaching!