During the summer months, educators often take time away to reflect and re-engerize for the fall. At first, summer plans are high on our list, but often our minds wander to the upcoming school year remembering things to change or add to our libraries. Our minds are ripe for new ideas. This can be a perfect opportunity to explore new resources from your pjs or front porch.
Several conferences are held during the summer months. Many of us cannot attend all – or any – but using the conference’s Twitter hashtag, we can explore ideas.
First, locate the website of any conferences of interest. Typically, the conference has a hashtag that all participants will include in a tweet.* Collect a list of those hashtags and open a web browser or the Twitter app from a mobile device. Search using the Twitter hashtag and include the “#”. A list of tweets will appear.
*If you do not have a Twitter account, you can still access the tweets. Just go to http://www.twitter.com/#_hashtag_ to view tweets.
Once you start reading the tweets, you may find helpful links, quotes, and resources. I suggest organizing the tweets using an online tool like Evernote. Evernote is a great organizational tool that helps organize notes, bookmark web items, and much more. It is available as an app or from the web. With Evernote, you can download an extension or add-on to easily clip the tweet and make it easy to find the information again.
For example, when I locate a tweet, I go to my Chrome extension for Evernote and choose Screenshot. Add tags and choose a notebook to save the ideas. For tweets that contain links, click on the link first and then bookmark the shared link to Evernote.
You may also choose to like a tweet by clicking the heart button. This will save the tweet in your list of favorites. If you are like me, I click this option a lot, so I prefer Evernote to organize my tweets into tags and notebooks.
If you prefer another tool, Diigo, a social bookmarking tool, might be another great option to save the tweets.
Once you organize tweets and gather new ideas, post those ideas for others to view. Share the notebook of tweets in Evernote with colleagues. Retweet compelling tweets or add your ideas with a new Twitter post.
Author: Becca Munson
Becca Munson, Librarian, is a National Board Certified Teacher with over 24 years of experience in education. Becca is the Coordinator for Library Systems in the Blue Valley School District. Previously, she was school librarian at Blue Valley West High School. She opened two buildings in Blue Valley and spent some time as an Ed Tech Specialist before returning to libraries. Becca supports over 45 librarians and support staff as they work to fulfill the mission of flexible scheduling, collaboration, and literacy.