The school year is ending and for many innovative educators that is when their own learning begins as they hit local, national, and international conferences and events like the #NYCSchoolsTech Summit, Building Learning Communities, or International Society of Technology in Education Conference. When they do, they share their learning with their social learning network. Social media is flooded with frivolous posts and you don’t want what you share to be among that. Here are some ideas to help ensure you are contributing quality content that will help you grow and strengthen your connections.
Before you post, think about what you are hoping for your audience. Know how they will find what you share valuable.
2-Where’s The Beef?
Share Quality ContentDon’t just post something like, “Took away great ideas I’m excited to use and implement in the classroom.” Your audience is left with nothing useful. They just know you know something they don’t. Instead share the actual ideas, information, and how and what you plan to do with what you learned.
Posts are more meaningful if they invite the audience into the conversation. Consider ways to do that. Did a presenter share an interesting or provocative idea? Share it and ask your audience their reaction. Did the presenter say something surprising? Share that and ask what others think of this idea. Posts that get conversation going are a win for the poster and the audience as everyone gets a little bit smarter.
Woohoo. Look at me at this event. I’m here and you’re not. These type of posts aren’t the best choices for social learning. What’s better is to snap photos that can help others learn or be inspired. Perhaps it is a photo of a powerful slide where you ask others for their reaction or experience with a concept. Maybe it is a great handout that promotes thinking and learning. Maybe it is a photo of someone speaking and you share a powerful quote they said as you shot the photo.
5-Tag Your Source
When you quote someone or share their ideas, do your best to find their profile info and tag them. It is always good to point your audience to the source directly. They get the credit and kudos they deserve and you make a great connection.
Did you learn about a terrific program, theory, or concept? Do your best to provide a link for readers to learn more.
Using a hashtag is a great way people can follow what folks are posting about a learning experience. Conference organizers should have this on slides, signs, programs, and more. This is a powerful way for attendees and interested parties can connect.
A terrific way to process and internalize your learning is to write a reflection as a blog post, Facebook note, or wherever you like to capture learning. If you do, share that and spread the learning. #NYCSchoolsTech educator Sean Arnold did just that following his visit to the NYSCATE Digital Leadership Conference. The recap helps the writer to make meaning of what they saw and also lets others learn from the experience.
What's a quality post actually look like? Here are some examples of useful posts following NYSCATE's Digital Leadership Conference.
What do you think? Will these tips help you share higher quality posts? Do you know folks who could benefit from some of these tips? Anything missing?
Lisa Nielsen writes for and speaks to audiences across the globe about learning innovatively and is frequently covered by local and national media for her views on “Passion (not data) Driven Learning,” "Thinking Outside the Ban" to harness the power of technology for learning, and using the power of social media to provide a voice to educators and students. Ms. Nielsen has worked for more than a decade in various capacities to support learning in real and innovative ways that will prepare students for success. In addition to her award-winning blog, The Innovative Educator, Ms. Nielsen’s writing is featured in places such as Huffington Post, Tech & Learning, ISTE Connects, ASCD Wholechild, MindShift, Leading & Learning, The Unplugged Mom, and is the author the book Teaching Generation Text.