Ed Tech Ideas

Tech Integration for Busy Teachers

Twitter and Blogging from a Newbie Perspective

Part I of a 2-Part Post

I tried Twitter twice before. Once in 2007 and once in 2008. Unsuccessfully. I couldn’t get my mind wrapped around the idea.  “Why would anyone want to use Twitter? Facebook is so much more interesting and visual. Why would I want to be limited to 140 characters? I don’t want strange people following me!” The idea was just too strange. Have you felt this way? I think many have.

Blogging was also a strange concept to me, although not as bizarre as Twitter. I’ve always thought I was an adequate writer at best, and I felt my classroom ideas  and lessons were intuitive and perhaps engaging, but not ground-breaking enough to share with the entire world. Why would anyone in their right mind want to read anything I wrote?

In the Beginning…

On November 11, 2009, with the new year approaching I decided to get an early start on my new year’s resolution: “To build a PLN” and I signed up for a WordPress account and immediately saw my first post, “Hello World!” (which I quickly changed to offer this disclaimer). Almost immediately, I found that once I began posting, my life became a continuous reflection of what I learned from this, and, could I blog about that. I wrote 12 posts in my first 1/2 month, added a Clustr Map and a hit counter and didn’t really care that I was averaging about 11 visits per day (hey, that’s 11 more people reading my thoughts than last month!).

The Epiphany

On December 29th I wrote a short post titled, Are We Adapting for the Future? which wasn’t much more than a cool video, a question, and a quote from Will Richardson. The very next day, to my shock and surprise, I received a comment from Mr. Richardson:

Hey Keith,
Thanks for reading. I think you ask a good question, the larger one being can we continue to adapt piecemeal, one at a time, or do we need some real vision and leadership on a higher level to move things forward?
Have a happy new year!

I was star-struck. I couldn’t believe it. This was the author, keynote speaker, stellar edublogger, member of the George Lucas Education Foundation… He said, “Hey Keith.” Like we were old pals! The world really is flattening! This was a great moment for me in the realization of the power of blogging. Two personal transformations had occurred because of this newly adopted tool:

  1. Personal and professional reflections in most everything I do.
  2. Connecting, communicating, and learning with educators from around the world in ways never before experienced.

I was hooked – but the best to come was still yet to happen…

Check back later this week for part II with the following topics:

  • Hello? Is Anybody There? (Finding followers on Twitter)
  • Making Progress (The 6 Steps I used to build my PLN)
  • Not All Addictions Are Bad (Getting my Twitter Groove on)
  • 100 Days and Counting (Where I’m at now)
  • Useful Resources (The top 9 resources I found to help build a PLN)

4 responses to “Twitter and Blogging from a Newbie Perspective

  1. Hilary February 25, 2010 at 1:27 pm

    I have a twitter account, but rarely use it. I am struggling myself to find a way to use it better with my educational blog for my work. I enjoy reading your blog, and am finding it to be a great resource for the work that I’m doing. Thanks!

    • Keith February 25, 2010 at 8:18 pm

      Thanks for the comment. It took some time, but I’m finding that Twitter is such a great professional resource for me to make connections and learn. It’s finding the right people to follow that matters.

  2. Anna Whitcher February 24, 2010 at 9:04 pm

    I’m new to Twitter as of last week and am inspired by your reflections. I’m looking forward to learning more this way. Thanks, Anna

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