Using social media for CPD can be a game changer for many educators. Many teachers work in small departments or feel isolated in their own schools, and social media provides a wider community of professionals who face the same challenges and have already got the answers, resources and ideas that you are looking for.
Click below to explore more social media channels from UKEdChat
View our own @ICTmagic talking about Social Media at BETT
View the presentation slides at https://prezi.com/i00z9nwaqr3s/successful-use-of-social-media-in-education
Following the #UKEdChat poll, this session explored how teachers can use social media to improve what they do. The following questions were asked:
- Why and how do you use social media professionally?
- Which social media platforms do you use professionally, and why?
- Are you a consumer or a producer of content, and what content do you focus on?
- What is the role of social video in your teaching and CPD? (YouTube, Instagram, SnapChat, Facebook Live, Periscope etc)
- What concerns or problems have you had about using social media as an educator?
- Do you use social media with your pupils? How?
- Is there a role for using social media with your school community?
- Work/life balance: How do you use social media outside of your professional life?
The discussion begin by asking why and how UKEdChatters use social media. To take part in UKEdChat of course! But apart from that, the answers were quite similar: to network, learn and keep up-to-date with educational developments. A few people also talked about social media building their confidence as an educator. Naturally, with UKEdChat being hosted on Twitter, this was the most popular platform. Facebook and Pinterest were also popular, as was YouTube, but some people talked about this not being a social network. It seemed that few people where using Instagram, LinkedIn or Snapchat for professional development.
The discussion moved on to discuss social media habits, namely whether chat participants thought they where consumers or producers of educational content on social media. The majority of UKEdChatters felt they where more consumers than creators, although must conceded that they were both.
The chat moved on to discuss video in social media. Seemingly all UKEdChatters said that they had posted videos to one social media platform or another and all had consumed them. Far fewer people had done so in a professional capacity. As mentioned above, almost no-one had used the photo/video sharing platforms for CPD.
Next we turned to the problems and barriers to teachers using social media. Many UKEdChatters felt hurdles to joining social media platforms professionally (and privately) because of possible problems from parents, senior leaders and interactions with students. Naturally, everyone taking part in the discussion had surmounted these fears, although many people still use an anonymous account. Many chat participants said that they where happy to use it for themselves, but worries over safeguarding meant that they did not choose to use social media as a learning tool in the classroom. There was similar reluctance with using Social Media as a tool to communicate with parents. Many people voiced that they were happy to broadcast school news, but they did not feel comfortable responding to what might come back.
Finally, the discussion concluded with how UKEdChatters use Social Media away from teaching. It was great to see such a diverse list of ideas, all of which can be explored in the UKEdChat archive.