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Author Bio: Nancy Carroll http://teachingiselementary.blogspot.com
Connected Educator’s Month is coming to a close and the new school year is about to begin. However, this doesn’t mean that educators around the globe will go back to their classrooms and stop connecting.
On the contrary, many teachers, administrators and others in the education field are looking forward to associating with each other through the use of Twitter Chats. A ‘chat’ is organized so that people can connect on certain topics or specialties and is usually held on a specific day/time.
One very popular chat is #4thchat. It was brought to life by @jmplus2 (Jeanne McQueen) from Colorado. She began the chat with the hope of bringing fourth grade teachers together to share and discuss this wonderful grade level. Other moderators include @plnaugle @newfirewithin @CYarzy and me, @ncarroll24. #4thchat is held each Monday night for an hour and has grown in popularity.
Moderators take turns hosting by preparing questions on a topic ahead of time in an effort to keep the conversation rolling and focused. During the chat people are sharing their ideas, resources or asking questions. There can be as many as 20 – 50 participants. Often people start by “lurking”, which means they are just following the conversation without offering any remarks.
For those who miss out on a particular chat night there is an archive of the discussion. The archive is posted on the #4thchat Wiki where there are many other resources as well which are geared towards and created by the participants of the chat.
Conversations in the last year and a half have included: Writing Strategies, Project Based Learning, Social Media in the 4th Grade Classroom, Homework, Getting Organized and so many more topics. Learning from one another is so easy and fun! If ever we have a question we post it on Twitter during the week and within minutes we have an answer posted.
The #4thchat has connected me with so many wonderful educators who now are my friends. Many of us are in contact with one another outside of Twitter. Just as importantly the walls of our classrooms have been flattened because of our #4thchats, and our students are the beneficiaries of our connections!
Feel free to join us on Monday nights to experience the camaraderie yourself!
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