There are so many social networking sites out in the world, how can we possibly as educators keep up? A new one is being made every day and I feel education in Scotland needs to embrace it in the correct manner. Children are growing up with there parents on social media right now, and they are on it too? We can’t shelter them from it so we have to embrace it. However, using social media as a teacher means that you might have to make the decision, do i make my account private or professional?
Teachers for years now have been caught out with inappropriate photos or posts because they haven’t been careful about what they’ve shared. Posts can be put up in a fit of rage and sometimes the most innocent of posts can be misconstrued and manipulated by children, parents and society. As a teacher you have a GTCS guideline to follow – http://www.gtcs.org.uk/web/FILES/teacher-regulation/professional-guidance-ecomms-social-media.pdf and faliure to follow them could result in you being diseplined and even the law could come into it. The basic rule I feel as a teacher or in any professional role is always think before you post – could this affect my career? In the classroom this is the same, many parents are afraid of the technology and won’t let their children use it at home and some can’t due to lack of funds. Therefore using social media in the classroom could cause some problems, especially if parents aren’t happy.
However, making the social media account professional means that you can use your account alongside other methods for work – which is great? Aren’t teachers always looking for a new way to teach kids? There are thousands of possibilities out there for using social media with children in the classroom, and providing you warn them of the dangers, and they use it sensibly, they can learn so much from it. You can get the children to run a twitter/instagram/glow/tumblr/pinterest page on behalf of the school asking them daily to tweet about something they have learned in school, something they are excited about that is happening at the next assembly and they can promote local fundraising events for the school or in the community. This would be an amazing way to get parents to see what the school are doing as well as teaching the children ICT skills, English skills and tie it all together with internet safety and what is appropriate to post? It can be tied in so well with the curriculum, we need to use it as a resource. And this is just one idea. The possibilities are simply endless. Social media in the classroom doesn’t have to be scary. I personally feel social media needs to be embraced within schools and taken with a positive attitude.