Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Teachers & Twitter

Why Twitter for teachers? Twitter provides us the opportunity to learn, share, collaborate, and follow leading edge information in our content areas. It allows us to narrow our streaming news from quality sources to specific interests and content that translates into student learning and engagement. It brings to life material for us, which makes it easier to bring to life material for our students. Although there are a number of ways to incorporate Twitter into our classrooms, there are three specific techniques that have been most effective for me.
First, as a financial educator, I need to be aware of the never-ending evolution of information in my content area. I am very careful about who I choose to follow, as the information I am collecting could ultimately be brought into my classroom. I have chosen to follow key financial literacy organizations, opinion leading economists, highly respected personal finance bloggers, key government organizations, and other key leaders in the field. Obviously, you can apply this thinking to your own situation.
Second, government and financial literacy organizations often tweet engaging student contests that add more enrichment to your classroom. For example, this past fall we participated in the Ohio Attorney General's Office 'Speak Out Ohio' consumer protection contest for students. The St. Louis Fed created a YouTube contest on saving. Jump$tart supported a drawing contest for younger children. My Reading High School students run a financial literacy organization called
TeenDollars, which created an online financial education game contest. These are just a few of the numerous student contest opportunities I have made available to my students as a result of Twitter.
Third, as educators we are responsible for differentiating instruction for all of our student ability levels and interests. In my room, I have various anchor activities readily available for students if they complete their assignments early. One of the options is a collection of financial education articles consistent with the curriculum, with varying degrees of difficulty. The articles are student centered, and provide additional learning opportunities in the areas the students are interested in the most. These articles derive from my Twitter account.
If you are interested in following me on Twitter, you can do so by
clicking here.

1 comment:

  1. "Third, as educators we are responsible for differentiating instruction for all of our student ability levels and interests."

    This is huge! Students do learn at different paces and it can be very difficult for any teacher to teach a classroom where there are different paces. There is a financial education website dedicated to teaching teens at their own pace. can really help you as a teacher in the classroom with lesson plans and games to play that teach them the tools of finance that will lead to teen success.

    Kyle Simpson,