Samstag, 7. Januar 2012

thought a week - Teachers and social media

At the beginning of the week I came across this news story on Twitter. After this article spread around a discussion broke out. But since this news story broke on Twitter and the people who where discussing it afterwards, where all obviously pro-social media teachers, it became pretty lopsided.
These teachers use Twitter and social media for sharing experiences and new learning technologies and also for educational discussions of all sorts.
I guess my reaction was mostly the same as of all the other teachers, the first thing that came to my mind was just, ‘wow’. That’s really straight up, practically forbidding them to use social media. I suppose this sentence was especially disturbing:
Secondly, never make any comment about your work, about your employer, about teaching issues in general.”

One would think (hope) that teachers who use social media tools in their ‘private life’ (and not for teaching purposes) are smart enough to understand their position in society. Teachers have a special reputation, meaning, they have to act like role models and always do the right thing. So if you abuse this role, then it’s understandable where such policies come from.
But on the other hand, if a teacher is using social media tools as blended learning tools in class and using it successfully, the school would have to accept it and embrace it.

One of main things I heard over and over again during my training is to be authentic as a teacher. Don’t try to fake your personality, because the kids will notice it right away and it costs way more to energy than to be yourself. And if the kids find out, they can and will be fake too, and nobody wants to imagine a classroom where the fake-teacher is talking to fake-kids.
Since I’ve been coaching the last few years, it was not that hard for me because I’ve experienced learning environments and knew that there’s nothing better than to be natural and authentic. The kids appreciate it and the connection instantly becomes more personal.
And just think about how annoying it is to work or talk to adults who are fake, and everybody knows there are plenty of them.

So, as a teachers, you have the responsibility to act authentic, but theres’s a limit to everything. The most important thing is to find the balance between in-school use, socializing tool and professional portfolio.

1 Kommentar:

  1. really liked this one: