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Using Twitter with LEARNZ

LEARNZ on twitterTwitter is a part of the modern phenomena of social media, which many students are familiar with.

LEARNZ has 3 twitter accounts: 

During each LEARNZ virtual field trip the LEARNZ teachers keep students and teachers up to date by sending twitter posts (tweets) at various times, often with an image captured at that moment.

With LEARNZ, twitter could be used at:

  1. Lurker level (limited): watching what the LEARNZ teachers tweet. To see what someone is tweeting on twitter you don’t need a twitter account, just their web address on twitter
  2. Contributor level (ideal): responding to what the LEARNZ teachers tweet. To contribute your own tweets on twitter or to follow someone on twitter you need to set up a twitter account (setup is 3-5 minutes).

Set-up and Cybersafety

Some teachers set up a class twitter account and supervise entries and control who to follow. Students may contribute to a separate shared document and then a teacher or a trusted student may copy-and-paste selected items into class tweets. For ways to set up twitter, go to Google and type into the search area either "how to set up a twitter account for a school" or “YouTube how to set up twitter” and follow one of the many suggested video tutorials. Kidsedchatnz may also be an appropriate educational place to start tweeting with your class - action is at 2pm each Wednesday.

Benefits of using twitter with LEARNZ

  • Connectedness - LEARNZ on Twitter means that you and your students become better connected to the live experience. Students may also like the opportunity to digest the field trip in the small chunks that form each tweet. 
  • Student agency - Using a class Twitter account (or funnelling tweets from individual student twitter accounts through it) enables students to respond to aspects of the field trip that appeal to them or that relate to your clasroom teaching and learning programme.
  • Community - Tweets by your students contribute to a larger picture. Tweets by students from other parts of New Zealand should broaden your students’ perspective and give them ideas for further inquiry.
  • Literacy - Reluctant writers may be drawn to contribute. Fluent writers may like the challenge of twitter’s 140 character constraint. Transliteracy is the ability to understand and communicate across a range of communication platforms, including social media, and is a vaild literacy outcome.