I started a Twitter account a few months ago so that I could see what people were posting about education. We had learned about Stuart Shanker (who studies self-regulation) in a previous course. I wanted to learn more about his theories so I made a Twitter account and found a ton of great educational resources. I enjoyed lurking from the shadows. It was a nice way to see what leaders in the field of education were talking about.
When we were given the option of Tweeting in EDCI 336, I thought that I would pick the option of growing my Personal Learning Network (PLN) but not putting any information out there. I felt that I did not have much to contribute to the myriad of voices already on in the Twitter-verse. Then one day, on my commute in, I saw the most beautiful cloud formation and found out that it was actually a meteorological event called a “fall streak hole.” I decided to try and make my first tweet. A few people in my cohort liked it and I really couldn’t see what made Twitter so popular. It felt a lot like Facebook but with a character limit.
Then we had an EDCI 336 class, which involved a video conference with Ian Landy, a principal in Powell River, BC. It was a great class and I learned a ton (not the least of which was the power of a video conference to be able to bring guest speakers into the classroom). At the end of the class I thought “Why not tweet about the class and put in a mention to Ian?” So that is what I did. Nothing earth-shattering. But then he retweeted it and poeple from his Twitter connections started liking the post. All of a sudden, I understood what makes Twitter different from the other social media platforms. It lets you connect with people that you would never have contact with. It is an easy way to share ideas. FaceBook is very insular. I feel that FaceBook is more like a mirror, while Twitter is like a window.
I have changed my mind about Twitter. I think that I am going to try and tweet a bit more and see what happens. I am also following some people who also use GIMP in the effort to increase my PLN for my open inquiry project. I am not ready to dive into the deep end of the Twitter-verse quite yet, but I am enjoying splashing around in the kiddie-pool.