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Welcome to the Team 4.1 Home Page

Theme: Social Media and Networking

Team: 4.1

Topic: Twitter in the Secondary Classroom

Approved Proposal:

“Social media is here. It’s just another resource and doesn’t have to be a distraction from learning objectives. Social media is another tool that you can use to make your classroom more engaging, relevant and culturally diverse,” Davis (2015).

Social media and social networking provide today’s student with opportunities to instantly connect and collaborate with others on a global level. Embedding Twitter into classroom programs enables students to communicate, share knowledge, and explore new experiences through the thoughts and ideas of fellow contributors. This learning module will present unique strategies and tools enabling teachers to introduce Twitter into their Year 7 to Year 12 classrooms. It will provide practical examples of using Twitter in engaging and meaningful ways that will meet learning outcomes, while giving students the skills to distinguish between factual and embellished information, teach them to be responsible and respectful social media users, and enable them to become informed digital citizens.

“21st Century skills harness not only the power of technology but the power of people” (Lindsay & Davis, 2012, p. 2).

Social networks, personal learning networks (PLNs) and Web 2.0 tools in the 21st-century context afford many opportunities for professional and personal connections and support for progressive and innovative teaching practice that leverages off these new tools (O'Connell & Groom, 2010b, p. 42). Because these networks and tools are frequently social in nature they become products of society and culture imbued with values, beliefs, and ideologies as well as facts and opinions of their users. Educators should therefore, be proactive in their contributions to the global information ecology and new learning frameworks. This can only happen if teachers embrace and are familiar with social media and Web 2.0 technologies (O'Connell & Groom, 2010a, pp. 15-16).

Never has it been more obvious that digital citizenship skills are now a skill of lifelong learning everyone needs to practice. In this learning module, we bring the lens of digital citizenship to working across Twitter in secondary school classrooms. The module is about how Twitter works, why you should harness it as a classroom tool, and an examination of the critical skills your students can develop when this social networking site is utilised in an education environment. As Ribble (2017) states, "…digital citizenship is not something apart from our regular life…", so it follows that we look to integrate these skills into the wider curriculum. A major benefit of utilising Twitter is the 21st Century ideal of encouraging "…a community of learning to continue beyond the scope of the content" (Wankel, Marovish, Miller & Stanaityte, 2011. p.385).

Tech-savvy teachers understand the gaping hole between being active on social networking sites (SNSs) and acquiring the skills of digital citizenship. Educators who want to grasp the new culture of learning (D. Thomas & Brown, 2011, p. 7) want to inhabit the learning space and "…experiment within its secure borders." (Thomas & Herbert, 2013). To this end, this module also investigates and presents a range of information, introducing you to Twitter, using it in class, and the critical skills and fluencies needed to adopt and be developed during the process. It will start you on the way to understanding and leveraging off the affordances of social media, in particular Twitter, for personal, professional, and student learning gains.

“The more we see “digital citizenship” as simply “citizenship” and part of what we do in our world, the closer we will get to realising that this is all of our responsibility as educators.”(Couros, 2016).

Reference List

Couros, G. (2016). Crucial "digital citizenship" conversations. Retrieved from http://www.edtechupdate.com/digital-citizenship/twitter/?open-article-id=4849437&article-title=crucial--digital-citizenship--conversations&blog-domain=georgecouros.ca&blog-title=the-principal-of-change

Crockett, L., Jukes, I., & Churches, A. (2011). Literacy is not enough : 21st-century fluencies for the digital age. Kelowna, B.C. : Thousand Oaks, Calif.: 21st Century Fluency Project.

Davis, V. (2015). A Guidebook for Social Media in the Classroom. Retrieved from __https://www.edutopia.org/blog/guidebook-social-media-in-classroom-vicki-davis

Lindsay, J., & Davis, V. (2012). Flattening classrooms, engaging minds: Move to global collaboration one step at a time. New York: Allyn and Bacon.

O'Connell, J., & Groom, D. (2010a). Connect, communicate, collaborate. Camberwell, Vic.: ACER Press.

O'Connell, J., & Groom, D. (2010b). Virtual worlds. Camberwell, Vic.: ACER Press.

Ribble, M. (2017). Protecting Digital Citizens. Retrieved from https://www.educationtechnologysolutions.com.au/2017/03/protecting-digital-citizens/

Thomas, D., & Brown, J. S. (2011). A new culture of learning : cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change. Lexington, Ky.: CreateSpace.

Thomas, L.K., & Herbert,J. (2013) Creating socially inclusive online learning environments in higher education. Paper presented at the 30th Ascilite Conference: Electric Dreams, Australia: Macquarie University

Wankel, C., Marovich, M., Miller, K., & Stanaityte, J. (2011). Educating educators with social media (1st ed. ed.). Bingley, U.K.: Emerald.

Contributing Members:

Nadine Cox @MsCox_the_TL

Doug De Kock @dougdk

Lisa Hampshire @LisaCHampshire