I have done Twitter 101 sessions at conferences and faculty PD more times than I can remember. The one thing that is always blatantly obvious is that most people who attend do not stick with it. There is so much anxiety about joining, so much anxiety about sharing…yes, for you extroverts out there, sharing something–ANYTHING–online for the first time is a heart wrenching experience. When they walk out of the room after an hour most never go back on…because they don’t have to. It gets written off as too time consuming, too much work to find something useful, too ridden with vulnerability, too much to navigate by themselves, alone, with no backup or support.
I just started teaching a grad class at St, Joesph’s University a couple weeks ago and for the first class I introduced twitter. One big difference between a conference or PD is that it was a four hour class–I did not have to rush through. I was able to take the time (even though I am sure it felt rushed to the students) to go into detail and set them up on site other than twitter.com so that when they walked out of class there was nothing else to do except tweet. Their hashtags to follow were loaded, they were following lots of people, and they had already been forced to tweet a few times. I was also able to do something else that I have never been able to do before, I was able to force them to tweet 🙂
Their “HW” this week was to simply write a post on their “new” blogs reflecting on their first week on twitter. The first post that came back I will save and continue to share at future classes, conferences, and PD that I do.
Please check out that post here…leave a comment either welcoming Karina Woltke to twitter, or welcoming her to blogging (everyone is a bit apprehensive about that too!)