I’m just over halfway through Don Wettrick’s book Pure Genius and loving it. The book is worth the read just for the valuable social media information, let alone all of the great ideas around facilitating passion projects with kids that he shares in the first part of the book. I’m a relative newbie to the world of Twitter. Well, that’s not entirely true. I’ve actually had an account since 2009, but I didn’t start using it until attending my first techie conference this fall.
Like many others, I assumed Twitter was just about following the Biebs or the Kardashians, so I steered clear. I use Facebook regularly for keeping in touch with family and friends, but the idea of tweeting just didn’t appeal to me. And to be honest, many parts of it still don’t. But I know I have been frustrated for years with trying to find people who think like me (my husband claims I never will), and Twitter has helped find some of them.
I started by using the hashtag from my conference and started following the presenters I saw in sessions. From there, I branched out and tried a few chats. Fast forward about six months, and I just finished a set of Skype chats with a music teacher I connected with on Twitter, I did a short “commercial” for Twitter with my building staff this morning to get them to come on board, and I have hopes to launch a PLC chat with teachers in my district (others are welcome to join us!).
But am I a hawk, crow, or owl? Wettrick talks about three types of Twitter participants: hawks (tweet a lot but rarely follow back), crows (engage in discussions, share info), and owls (prefer to follow select few and “listen”). I would say I am typically a crow – I like to get involved and start a discussion with colleagues to learn as much as I can. That said, I think I’m also an owl at times, particularly when wading into an unknown waters. Sometimes I lurk in an unfamiliar chat and don’t really participate because I want to get a feel for the “room.”
Fortunately, Twitter is big enough for every type of bird. The important thing is that you join the flock! What will you be: hawk, crow, or owl?