This week we were asked to participate in an EdChat using TweetDeck. All week long I was dreading having to do this because I felt as though I had little to nothing to offer. I am a 4th year student who has had all of four months of full-time teaching experience and so I wondered what on earth I could possibly contribute to the conversation. But as much as I was dreading it at the start I was floored by the richness of knowledge the other people in the chat had to offer.
I participated in the #2ndaryELA edchat this evening and I think there were about 12 participants in total. While that may sound small I was thankful that the group was so small because it meant that you could actually follow along with the conversation and read everyone’s responses to the questions. Earlier in the evening, I lurked on the main #edchat feed and I was so overwhelmed. I would read a tweet and by the time I came to the end of it 468 375 958 more tweets had already popped up and the topic of conversation had changed. Another thing I did not enjoy about the #edchat was that a lot of people seemed to just be tweeting random education-related stuff but there was no actual conversation going on. I would definitely recommend finding a smaller chat to partake in because then you can actually read what everyone is saying and you actually feel heard as well.
While it was a great experience, I am amazed that people schedule these things into their day for fun. There is value in hearing different perspectives though and the resource sharing was awesome. On a technical note, I wish that you could be more selective about who sees your responses to the chats as opposed to it being blanket tweets that everyone that follows you can see. It would be nice to be able to filter who sees your responses and who doesn’t. Or if your profile tweeted once to say “Sally is participating in an #edchat. Click here to see his/her contributions”.
I loved using the chat to gain some new resources and perspectives but I’m not sure it is something that I will engage with on a regular basis. But I definitely recommend trying it.