Quentin sent me a link to the Tech Tips for Teachers blog with a blog post on ideas for using Twitter in the classroom. This post offers some useful ideas in incorporating Twitter and mobile devices in a safe but productive way. Here are some ideas on using Twitter as a communication tool for schools that incorporate those found in the Tech Tips for Teachers blog post with some of my own:
- Creating a Twitter account that is used only to post reminders including homework or other due dates and getting students and parents to follow you through that account;
- Using Twitter to post school or classroom news;
- Sending information to parents concerning bus cancellations or buses being late;
- Send messages to inform parents of emergencies quickly;
- Use privacy settings to ensure only students and parents of your school/class community are following your updates.
Of course, Twitter can be accessed on any mobile that has access to the Internet so parents and students can follow you on their mobile device. In addition, if mobile devices are used in Canada, The United States, or India, students and their parents can also receive updates via SMS so reminders are never missed and data plans are not required.
Of course, not all parents/students have a mobile phone or use SMS. However, since penetration rates for cell phones is much higher than it is for computers or the Internet, and since receiving text messages is free on most mobile networks, this form of communication has a greater likelihood of connecting with members of the community and provides a modern and efficient option to connect to members of the school community at no extra cost to anyone involved.