Several years ago I pontificated the value of my using Twitter. At that time I came to the conclusion that Twitter was not a useful tool for me. Much of my current thinking
has benefitted from my reading or rereading several books (listed
below), my having participated in Carroll Technology Fellows group discussions,
and my developing with six student research assistants a new course ("Pioneering Virtual European Immersion
Experiences"). I also have found value in revisiting some resources I discovered such as this classic tutorial by the consummate visionary, teacher, and proselytizer, Jane Hart.
Books that have shaped my thinking:
- Michelle Pakansky-Brock's Best Pracices for Teaching with Emerging Technologies. She writes well and thoughtfully, recognizes the limits of technology tools and offers a well-reasoned set of criteria for deciding which tools to integrate into the classroom. She is definitely someone I find value in "following"—so I do!
Susan Manning and Kevin E. Johnson's The Technology Toolbelt for Teaching. This book provides a useful decision matrix for choosing among and using the "right" technology teaching tool. As a result of having studies this book, I now have a better understanding of some situations where Twitter can be helpful to me in my teaching and scholarship.
- Deltina Hay's A Survival Guide to Social Media and Web 2.0 Optimization. This book, though not written by a a teacher or for teachers, provides a very pragmatic guide to maximizing the benefits of Web 2.0 tools. I found the CD of links particulary instructive.
- Paul McFedries' twitter Tips, Tricks, and Tweets. Though somewhat outdated, this book successfully provided me with helpful, lucid details on mastering features of Twitter of which I was totally unaware.
Now if I can only divine my message to Pope Benedict XVI to 140 characters or less.