Some of you may remember my Top 50 Twitter Accounts for Historians Follow Friday edition. There are a number of fantastic education-related Twitter accounts out there too, but the easiest way to find and collaborate with other educators and build a professional learning network, I find, is not searching them out one-by-one, but by participating in some fantastic professional development chats that occur regularly across the Twittersphere.
These chats are all identified by a hashtag (#) that allows you to easily find and track a key word or topic that other educators are tweeting about. This post won’t list all of them (Cybraryman has an excellent comprehensive list), but I will highlight my favourites Monday-Sunday. Tip of the trade: Find a program like TweetDeck, which allows you to keep an eye on all your favourite hashtags. My desktop regularly looks like the convoluted mess above – but I never miss an opportunity for learning!
#sschat (Social Studies Chat), 7PM EST – A weekly chat for Social Studies educators on a variety of subjects most relevant to their classrooms and teaching. This week’s chat, for instance, was on Classroom Simulations. You can also follow the hashtag all week for ideas and resource sharing.
#edchat, 12 & 7PM EST – The original education chat. This is the big one! It can be a little overwhelming for someone new to this format of learning, so I may recommend watching and absorbing the first chat you join in on. The most recent chats have been on media literacy and student engagement. There are hundreds of teachers from across the world making suggestions and helping each other!
#ntchat (New Teacher Chat), 8PM EST – A fantastic group of experienced and new teachers or teacher candidates coming together to chat about the basics of being an educator. Some of my favourite recent chats have been on communicating with parents, classroom management and teaching kindness. An incredibly welcoming group of educators where any question is welcome!
#mathchat (Math Chat), 8PM EST – A chat for those wanting to learn more and develop their skills as mathematics educators. This chat also repeats on Mondays at the same time. I don’t know about you, but math has never been my strong suit. Having a group of educators to bounce ideas off is a wonderful thing! Last night’s chat was on challenging exceptional mathematics students.
Okay, so there’s not much going on Fridays. Teachers (rightly) get a night off even professional development. But, here’s a hashtag that take place all week long you should be following:
#historyteacher – A fantastic resource for all History teachers. Although there can be a concentration of American-History teachers, there are Canadians (like me!), Brits and all kinds of nationalities contributing to a discussion of how to best infuse critical thought, primary resources and multiple perspectives in our classrooms.
#elemchat, (Elementary Teachers Chat), 5PM EST (10PM GMT) – My first Twitter chat (thanks @tcash!) A great group of elementary school educators from across the globe collaborating and discovering best practices for teaching our younger students. Two of my favourite recent chats have been on fostering student-centred classrooms and best pedagogical practices for integrating technology.
Sunday is often seen as a day of rest, so I’ve also got no regularly scheduled chat for here. But again, here’s a hashtag that take place all week long you should be following:
#CdnEd – An opportunity for Canadian educators to share unique news and perspectives on the Canadian education system.
Happy Friday, everyone, and I hope to see you all at a future chat!