Sunday, May 7, 2017

A thank you letter to my #PLN on Twitter.

Dear @Twitter #PLN:

I just want to say thanks to a great start to 2017.

My account just hit 1000 followers this weekend. I follow about the same amount and I am humbled that somebody would follow me back. In reality, it's an arbitrary number that doesn't mean much, but it gets me thinking about why I joined Twitter.

When I started in late January 2017, I never thought Twitter would be my go-to for learning or have such an effect on my view of education. I created a Twitter account as a way to grow my personal learning network (#PLN) and to learn from those already established on Twitter (See blog). I have to say, I learned a lot from you (my Twitter family). George Couros, Alice Keeler, Eric Curts, Casey Bell, all need to be thanked by name because I basically re-tweet everything they do.

After I became a Google trainer, I joined Twitter but didn't really become fascinated with it as a learning tool until I went to the #MACPL17 conference in Baltimore and met George Couros. I'm a Google guy and my PLN was primarily with Google+ and my district. So, I followed people from Google+. Fortunately, my world has become a bit bigger with Twitter.

In the four months I've been on Twitter, I have learned about tools that I may have missed otherwise: Jennifer Lagarde introduced me to Flipgrid, Google slides stop motion by Eric Curts, AnyoneCanView extension by Alice Keeler, Autocrat from Jenny Conrad, are just a few. The list is quite extensive. Also, a big thanks to Jeffrey Heil, Molly Bennett, Tracy Purdy, and the whole EdTech team for the support they gave when I first presented and live-tweeted at a Google summit.

Here's my novice advice for enjoying your time on Twitter:

1. Join a live chat. thought-provoking, lots of learning & networking! EdChat calendar
2. retweet, retweet, retweet.
3. Ask questions.
4. Enjoy the connections.

My views on following on Twitter:
1. I tend to follow people, not things or companies. Exception (@Buncee & @Flipgrid)
4. I also tend to follow people who tell me a little bit more about themselves in their profile. I like to see who I'm learning from.
5. I also tend to follow tweets that have pictures. I love infographics. And cheesy as it is, I love quotes that are in Canva style picture format.
6. I like to follow hashtags that help my job as a tech educator. #edtech #personalizedPD #gafesummit
7. Weirdly enough, I don't follow @Twitter...maybe I should.

Power is gained by sharing knowledge. See you on Twitter @TechFrye.

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