As always when I take a class I get really excited about everything I am learning–which is the good thing but the bad thing is sometimes I feel like I am not a master on any of them. That I just have these pieces of superficial learning–so my goal this class was to apply some of what I am learning immediately and find one or two items that I can find depth in. Social media and Symbaloo is what I have choose to focus on. Symbaloo will be an upcoming post so stay tuned.
Twitter–now I dabbled in Twitter before–I had set it up, had twenty or so that I was following and another 20 that were following me (for whatever reason). LInked-In–I had kept up with this tool since in the beginning it did not involve as much reading as it did networking–adding people to my network–all kinds of people! Facebook–sorry my friends–social-social networking is a lower on my priority list but I have made the effort to get on at least once a week–to check things out (sometimes just too much drama there).
So back to Twitter–now that I use it on a regular basis I find that it is an invaluable resource for growing my network, finding and following experts in my field, and most importantly growing my professional development. I am now following 111 people and have 113 followers. I am not a huge tweeter–coming in at 244. But I am good at favoriting and sending email links of the Tweets to my non-Twitter colleagues. I have also taken an interest in getting my husband into Twitter as a way for him to connect, educate and market the Freestore Foodbank. Let me just tell you that he is Twitter Maniac! I started him in Twitter in February and he has 1100 Tweets and 69 Following and 73 Followers–he even has Prez Ono following him–which as we know is addicted to Twitter.
I also worked with a superb techy colleague James Z. to have a Lunch and Learn for WMS staff on Twitter. We had about 80% of the staff attend and we got a few new Tweeters! I set up a wiki for staff Tweeters to put their suggestions of ‘who to follow’. It also had directions how to set up their own account. We have Cary Harrod listed as an Educational and Tech Guru–perhaps that will get me extra credit points!!! LOL Here is the link: http://wmstweets.wikispaces.com/home So as I take this class for my job it is not about just my learning–my role is to move WMS staff toward the center of TPACK2. I do know that I have to be using and believing in what I want them to use–so my usage is very important.
I also like to follow some blogs–a few technology ones and a bunch of library ones–I have been using Google Reader as my aggregator but since it is going away this summer I have decided to follow fewer blogs and use symabaloo as my aggregator. I have gotten so many great ideas from blogs and twitter–it is just so hard to keep up! I keep up my Reading Reiber Blog–where I write about the books I read–a place to keep all the information and to share (although reading YA books has definitely been cut back this semester by taking 5 credit hours of classes) 😦 Here is the link to that blog: http://kreiber.wordpress.com/ I have been working on changing the look–so that is under construction.
As an added thought about students and social media– at our Learn 21 Day with some high school students they said they are not using email and some them said facebook is on a rapid decline that they are using Texting, Chat Apps like Instragram and Kik and some are even using Twitter. It seems like their social media is moving at the speed of light–snail mail now is email.
So these are my reflections on how this class has helped me to grow Professionally Through Social Media. It is really hard to put a number of hours on part this part of the class–with using Twitter, preparing for Lunch & Learn, setting up the WMS Tweets Wiki, and blogging I am going to take a modest 7 hours. I write this early on a beautiful Mother’s Day morning in sunny Cleveland, Ohio while my husband is sitting and tweeting next to me!