What was the value of four weeks of Twitter? Will I continue with the Twitter network?
So here it is. The 4th week of the Twitter challenge. (It is actually the 5th week, but I had to stop for a week to focus on the 5 Days of Google course!) To continue or cease is the question. I have not been really sure about the value of a Twitter network. As the weeks progressed its value began to appear. The biggest being the PLN it created for me and the sharing of ideas by other teachers. That culminated itself yesterday.
I had not been very active on Twitter last week. Until last night. There were tweets that attracted my attention on unintentional gender bias. I followed the tweets to David Truss’s blog and continued to follow along to Betty Gilgoff’s blog. I also took a side trip to Dan Meyer’s blog. These posting had nothing in common, except to me. The connection between them made plain the power of my Twitter PLN.
Now, to humbly attempt to write this as well as Dan. I am a linear, logical thinker and I find the web is not a place for linear thinking. I lose focus and get lost in info overload. Dan’s blog is my anchor. His ability to get to the point, to be linear and logical helps refocus my own very linear thinking. Dan is at a place in his career where I am. His post really hit home. He’s looking for a challenge to keep him “lean and hungry” for the next 30 years to provide his needed level of job satisfaction. Our difference is I have challenges, more than I can manage, which is causing job satisfaction in my current position to fast lose its lustre. Dan listed his former challenges and that list is what I needed to “see”. It helped me clarify what was causing my own lack of job satisfaction and now I know how to fix it. He, as usual, helped me refocus and clarify. I wish I could offer the same level of help back. What does David and Betty’s gender bias discussion have to do with any of this?
One of the most important missing pieces in my former teaching position – the one that caused most of my lack of job satisfaction and caused me to leave – was lack of professional development and dialogue. On Twitter and in the blogs came a marvelous dialogue on gender bias started by a man (David Truss) regarding biases against women. The topic is one we all think about but do not speak about. It was brought up and discussed by men and women from all over the North American and Australian continents with grace, tact and professionalism. That is what made the power of the Twitter PLN so very, very clear. It was everything I have been looking for for the past 9 years. I now have a way to provide professional development, dialogue and a place to refocus which in turn provides me with a way to create/maintain the job satisfaction I have lost in the past or currently been losing. All from a set of apparently disconnected posts and tweets on my own PLN. That has immense value to me.
Will I continue with Twitter? Definitely.