I was lucky enough to present, with Lindsey Reynolds, to aspiring leaders in our county on the use of social media to engage stakeholders and growing your own PLC. This is a topic I am very passionate about and I hope that my enthusiasm was evident in my presentation. I will discuss each topic briefly and then share our presentation at the end. Please feel free to copy anything from our presentation as the point of a PLC is sharing with other great educators.
First: Using Social Media to Engage Stakeholders- My first dabble into social media was twitter and it started for me as a twitter stalker. I did not post and only followed news, sports, and entertainment. One of the first educators I came across on Twitter was Eric Sheninger. I am very passionate about instructional technology and he was sharing all of these great resources and how he was transforming his school in New Jersey. Not only was I utilizing the resources he was sharing, but I found it odd that as an educator in Maryland that I knew more about his school in New Jersey then I did about other schools in my own county. I embraced his message of “tell your story or someone will tell it for you”. We shared this message with aspiring leaders and showed them examples of how we are engaging our stakeholders through multiple social media platforms. The twitter letter that I used with our stakeholders is a modification of one that Eric shared with his stakeholders. This leads to my next topic…
Second: Using Social Media to Grow Your Own PLC: I was a Lead Teacher for three years before becoming an administrator and I shared at one of our meetings two years ago that Twitter was the best PD I had ever had. I was able gather resources and great ideas from all over the world and share them with our administration and staff. Twitter has made me a better educator and leader because not only was able to learn from great leaders in my county (Mike Chilcutt and James Aleshire) but I was also learning from leaders across the world and I was able to do it on my time; I did not have to attend conferences as I was able to gather free information throughout my day. I was personalizing my own professional development.
One message Lindsey and I did share with aspiring leaders is to practice. Every tool we shared (Instagram, Vine, Twitter, Facebook, Blogs) is a tool we were unfamiliar with at first. Look at these tools and practice with them. See how other educators are utilizing them to enhance their own practice and/or promote their school. I just started with Vine this past summer; I practiced with it for about a week before finally feeling comfortable enough to use to promote our school on Twitter (Clear Spring High School).
I am thankful I was given the opportunity to share this message with aspiring leaders and present with an educator who feels as strongly about this as I do (Lindsey Reynolds). Here is a copy of our presentation: Social Media PD Please let us know if you have any questions or need any other information.