This past week in my #ECMP 355 class I was introduced to the world of twitter. Now that’s not to say that I had never heard of it before, because I did have an account at one point in time however, I had no idea how to use it and I thought it was boring. My exact thoughts were “oh great another media platform for people to post annoying status updates about their boring lives”. Little did I know it was actually a really useful media technology that I could use both in my personal and professional life. So to anyone who has had a twitter account for years, I apologize for being a snob!
While I am by no means a twitter expert I am enjoying playing around with it and learning more about the benefits of it, especially in an educational position. I really like that we can search specific topics according to the hashtag and follow people without having to “add them” and you get the option to choose whether or not you follow them back. I had never heard of a twitterchat before last weeks class, nor would I have known how to partake in one. That was a really neat experience. I unfortunately was unable to attend the #saskedchat on thursday, however I searched the topic the following day and enjoyed reading some of the responses. It was really neat for me to see a local principle from the community in which I live partaking in the discussion.
Technology is a fairly new concept to me as I have been limited to my exposure in it. There is still so much to learn about twitter, however I feel I am getting the hang of it. I found this really great article called The Teacher’s Guide To Twitter where it has lots of helpful tips for teachers. There is a lot of information on there and I am still reading it and trying out some of the things that they have suggested.
Feel free to follow me on twitter and my learning journey as I dive into the world of technology!
Before I sign off for the night I’ll leave you all with an interesting fact about the “hashtag” and how it got it’s name!
The symbol known as the hashtag (#) in Twitter has a history of different names and uses in American English, including pound sign – used after a number to mean “weight in pounds,” number sign – used in front of a number to mean “number” (as in “Please review item #2 on the list”), crosshatch, and hash mark.
In addition to the symbol, the term hash mark can also refer to a set of stripes on a soldier’s sleeve that indicate a number of years of service in the military, or to lines on a football field.
The word hashtag, used to refer to the symbol (#) in Twitter, is a combination of the word hash from hash mark and the word tag, a way to mark something as belonging to a specific category.
As many of you probably know, using a hashtag in Twitter helps categorize your message and makes it possible for others to find your tweet when they search for messages on the same topic. If you include the hashtag#snowden in your tweet, for example, anyone who searches for #snowdenin Twitter will see your tweet. Hashtags make it easy to quickly find messages about a topic that interests you.