Choose a Hashtag and Ride It: The Awesome Power of Twitter PD

Have you ever wanted to be in two places at the same time? Do you often feel as if you’re being pulled in three directions? In my roles as teacher, instructional coach, technology coordinator and father of four I frequently feel this way. A good example of this was one Saturday last spring when there were two education conferences in the NY Metropolitan area that I really wanted to attend, but family responsibilities prevented me from going to either of them. However, riding Twitter hashtags made it possible for me to “be” in three places at once!

#CELI15 Long Island Connected Educators Summit 201

#TCRWP Teachers’ College Reading and Writing Project 88th Reunion

Learning NEVER Stops on Twitter

The awesome power of Twitter allowed me to participate in both conferences simultaneously while at my son’s snowy LAX practice. As I sat in my car, I “rode” both hashtags thanks to a WiFi hotspot. I was immersed in learning: gathering lesson ideas for my ELA classes, favoriting new EdTech apps for my students and teachers to try, and networking with the participants at both conferences. This was pure bliss for an education technology geek like myself, and it’s a prime example of Personalized PD.

Five Take-Aways From My Personalized PD Session on Twitter:

The Six Signposts Prezi
  1. Six Signposts Prezi Presentation: Notice and Note: Strategies for Close Reading is an excellent book co-written by one of the keynote speakers at the TCRWP reunion, Kylene Beers. I’m somewhat familiar with the book, but the golden nugget I found yesterday was discovered via the #NoticeandNote hashtag. Jamison Renfro had shared a truly awesome Prezi of the signposts that authors use to alert you to important information. This outstanding presentation includes video link examples for each signpost. It is one of the coolest Prezi’s I’ve seen. You can view it and save a copy of it here: Six Signposts Prezi
Nonfiction Signposts

2. Sneak Preview of the Six Nonfiction Signposts: Kylene Beers gave attendees a preview of her brand new Nonfiction Signposts and Allison Wasserman tweeted it out.

3. ParentCamp & Voxer: Amy Nardone shared her team’s ParentCamp & Voxer Presentation on google slides. Now the world can view this awesome presentation on maximizing Family-School partnerships!

4. Scratch: If you’d like to change the face of education, implement Scratch. Julian Aptowitz shared this amazing website that allows students to create and share stories, games and animations while learning to code. You can check it out here: Scratch

5. SLIME: Students of Long Island Maker Expo: WWP Library in Farmingdale, NY shared this flyer for an amazing expo celebrating the creativity and innovation of Long island students in grades K-12. Click the image to get your free tickets to this event.

This is just a little taste of what I learned in one afternoon of riding hashtags. The awesome power of personalized PD on Twitter is simply remarkable. I’ve learned more in a few months on Twitter than in years of professional development. I strongly suggest you choose a hashtag or two and RIDE!!