I remember back in 2010 when I attended my first ECOO Conference. I was star struck! Here were all of these amazing people that I follow and learn with online, and I was meeting them in person. It was incredible! Honestly, I questioned why these people would even want to talk to me. I felt like nothing compared to them. I often still feel this way … but then I remember something: Twitter connects us, and makes these “stars” a very “human” part of our PLN (Personal Learning Network).
Today was a perfect example of this for me. This afternoon, I was thrilled when I saw that Mark Barnes, the author of Role Reversal, commented on my Storify Story from yesterday. I read and blogged about Mark’s book this summer, and I was in awe that he noticed and responded to what I was doing in class.
I was then further surprised when he tweeted me.
At this point, I wrote Mark back and thanked him for the support! Well this came with another incredible surprise — a tweet with an exciting message!
It was at this point that I paused to think: only on Twitter would authors of professional resources interact with teachers and share learning so openly. That’s what makes social media amazing: it connects us and with people that we never thought possible. I learned a lot from reading Mark’s book, and now I get to learn from him more online!
Yes, to me Mark is a star, but he’s a person too, and I’m glad to have him as a part of my PLN. What star struck experiences have you had thanks to social media? How has Twitter helped “humanize” the “stars?” I’d love to hear about your experiences!
You have such interesting connections on Twitter, Aviva! I am certainly not as accomplished as you are at connecting with people, but I understand what you are saying. Twitter is very humanizing – we are all only worthy of 140 characters. No one is on a stage. I like learning from everyone. I would turn your ideas around. You talk about how great it is to connect with the stars…I like that it offers the opportunity for me to learn from people I wouldn’t otherwise have the chance to see or hear. I appreciate those “stars” too, but I can always pick up their book or hear their presentation. It is the teacher in a school with only their twitter PLN to leverage that I find so interesting.
Thanks for your comment, Kristi! As usual, you pushed my thinking. The truth is that many of the “stars” I speak about here and in my last post are the amazing teachers in different schools that I never get a chance to communicate with and/or learn from in any different way. When I went to ECOO the first time in 2010, these “stars” with people like Danika Barker, Rodd Lucier, Jamie Weir, Colin Harris, Andy Forgrave, and many others. I don’t think that any of these people have written books, but they’re all incredible educators, and I felt as though I was “star gazing” just the same.
Aviva, you are a star on the rise. More important, you are turning kids into stars. Thanks for all your amazing work. I’m going to be in touch in the future, when I need content for my next book on student-centered, progressive learning.
Wow! Thank you so much for the lovely comment! I really appreciate your support, and I definitely appreciate how much your last book, ROLE REVERSAL, helped me reconsider the use of inquiry, project-based learning, and descriptive feedback in the classroom. I’d be honoured to share some information with you for your next book on a topic that I’m passionate about for sure!