The wealth of information available via social media continues to amaze me. The vast amount of resources and networking opportunities that have sprouted (no pun intended) up in the last few years is incredible. Educators from around the world can connect and share ideas. But some of us might be wondering where to start! Or, for those of us already immersed in the online culture of the educational realm, how do we add to our networks? We all know time is valuable. How can we make the most of our time online?
I’ve compiled a resource list based on my experience with educational resources and networking in our field. Personally, I find Twitter is the best place for both. I get quick, easy access to great materials, and the many Twitter chats that are available allow me to connect with some amazing people in our field. But I realize I haven’t explored the full potential of the other social media networks. For example, does anyone use LinkedIn groups to share educational resources or have discussions? Feel free to add your favorites to any of the following lists via the comments section below. With your help, we can make all of these lists comprehensive!
Using hashtags in Twitter allows people to view all related posts in one place. This is a great way to find lots of educational materials, articles, ideas, and opinions. Twitter chats are fantastic for having a discussion in real time about predetermined educational topics. These chats are also a good way to find interesting people to follow. I’ve linked some of the main chats below to their websites so that the upcoming topics and times are readily accessible. Also, someone started this list of ELT-related Online Chats, including the names and the meeting times, in order to try and organize all the educational twitter chats available in one place. (My apologies for not giving credit to the person who started this list. I had it bookmarked and can’t remember the original source. Please leave me a comment if you know the source and I will give credit where it is due!)
Popular Hashtags and Twitter Chats:
- #EAPchat – Website
- #Edchat – Website
- #elemchat – Website
- #ELLCHAT – Facebook page
- #ELTchat – Website
- #engchat – Website
Ever wonder what all these abbreviations stand for? I know I did, and had to look a lot of them up over the past few years. Check out Educational Acronyms and Abbreviations to unveil the mystery behind some of the most common abbreviations in the field of education.
Some of the Twitter chats have great Facebook pages, too.
You can try IATEFL, Edutopia, and AzarGrammar.com as well. Also, ESL-Library’s Facebook page and our very own Sprout English Facebook page are excellent places for lesson ideas and grammar pointers. Let me know if you have any other favorite Facebook pages or groups for educational resources.
Here are a couple of communities I find useful for educational resources, articles, and blogs:
Also check out ESL-Library and Sprout English‘s Google Plus pages, which are full of educational materials, grammar advice, and teaching tips. Another good reference list is 10 Google Plus Educators Every Teacher Should Follow by Educational Technology and Mobile Learning.
I belong to a couple of educational groups, but I must admit I haven’t spent a lot of time looking into educational resources on LinkedIn. Does anyone have any other recommendations?
Thanks to the growth of webinars (advertised on most social media sites, especially Google Plus), professional development and networking with our peers is getting even more interactive. I for one am excited about what the future holds!
Ain’t technology grand?