18 March 2014
Whilst school kids seem to be pros at Twitter, and masters of hashtags, if you as a school principal think Tweeting is what birds do, it’s time you get your head out of the clouds, and start coming to terms with the technology kids are using. You never know, on learning a few basics, you too may also find it’s a great way to engage parents and students of your school community.
So, let’s get back to basics and firstly have a look at what Twitter is, and how to set up an account, then we’ll delve in to how it can be used for your school.
The article below from Mashable, is a great resource to get you familiar with the common terms used on Twitter and basics on how to get started:
Hopefully by now, you have a bit of an understanding about what Twitter is. I’d suggest setting yourself up an account, and just following other people in your industry, media outlets, or companies you’re interested in at first, which will teach you quickly how others are using Twitter. Then, once you are more confident, you can start looking at how you can produce or share content via Twitter on behalf of your school.
Here are 4 simple ways that your school could use Twitter:
1. “Follow the Principal” – Chances are, parents are sending their children to your school because you as a principal have created a great environment for both the students and teachers. As a respected representative of the school, people are interested in what you see around the school each day, how you interact with students, and your views on any publicity that education is receiving in the media.
2. Special Interests – you may look to split up your Twitter responsibilities and create multiple accounts that interested people can follow – eg, get your head of music, sport, science, English, involved to create and follow content based on a subject area.
3. Newsletter Items & Alerts – Twitter is great for sharing general information you may have already posted on your website about upcoming events, excursions, etc. Chances are you can also set up your existing website to automatically send any new updates straight to your Twitter account.
4. School Sport – Set up a Twitter feed by sport which can contain up to date sports scores, venue changes, wet weather details, etc. You may also wish to get a parent or coach involved as a school “Twitter champion”, and allow them to directly contribute content.
The link below is from Sewickly Academy in the US, which also gives detail on how they use Twitter at their school, along with a useful guide the academy has published for parents.
I hope the above information has been useful in giving you a better understanding of Twitter and how it could be used for your school. Even if you set up a personal Twitter account and use it to follow your own interest or your industry peers, it’s made my time compiling this article worthwhile.
So, go forth and Tweet!