I have used a number of web2.0 tools in (and outside) of my classroom. I have recently started using twitter, primarily to follow a number of influential teachers who advocate for the use of technology in the classroom. Through following these teachers I came across a link to a video about Professor Monica Rankin from UT Dallas. The video is about a "twitter experiment" conducted in her history class.
I am now inspired to try the same type of experiment next year. My early preparation for this attempt will be structured in the following way:
- During class discussion / film viewing / lecture...
- Set up a secondary LCD projector & project TweetDeck
- Have students (with previously created twitter accounts) submit comments during the class.
- Each comment will be marked with an appropriate #hashtag or could be sent in a direct message to my "classroom" account as to make all comments appear.
To continue the assignment and create a type of assessment, I plan on having the students go back and read through the classroom comments and write a brief review of the class.
My initial understanding of the benefit of using twitter in class is that it will allow students to participate in class without the social constraints and natural hierarchy that develops in a typical face to face classroom. Also, because all comments are cataloged and essentially saved in twitter, they can be referred to later to stimulate further class discussion, review material or lead to another assignment.
Unfortunately, I won't be able to undertake this project until September. But once I try it out I will post a video.
I have already posted a similar type of project using two LCD projectors and rotating student comments during a lecture from Academic Earth. Check it out here: