Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Tuesday Teacher Tidbits: Social Media

First of all, Happy Election Day!

As they used to say in Chicago.... "Vote Early, and Vote Often!"

Trivia:  Do you know who came up with this slogan?

Today, I will be leaving in the morning to go out to Roland Colony to work on Internet connection to some of their new computers.

Tomorrow, I will be traveling to Lake Benton and helping them with any technology issues they may have.

On to the subject at hand:  Social Media

Did You Know:

  • 91% of online adults use social media regularly
  • 83% of people believe platforms like Twitter and Facebook help them make new friends
  • 40% of people spend more time socializing online than they do face-to-face
  • Every minute of the day:
    • 100,000 tweets are sent
    • 684,478 pieces of content are shared on Facebook
    • 2 million search queries are made on google
    • 48 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube
    • 47,000 apps are downloaded from the App Store
    • 3,600 photos are shared on Instagram
    • 571 websites are created
    • $272,000 is spent by consumers online
  • 80% of active Internet users visit social networks and blogs
  • social media use has increased 356% in the US since 2006
  • 93% of US adult Internet users are on Facebook
So, what does this mean for Educators, and Education?  

Well, simply put.... people out there are using Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, etc, etc...)
-What a better way, to bring your message to people... but to put your message out in a format that people are already using.
(Imagine Mom and/or Dad surfing their Facebook page at home in the evening, and they see "Don't forget History Test tomorrow!" posted by their child's History teacher.)

So I thought I'd break down a few of the more popular social networks out there.  Each of the 3 social networks listed below are free to use, and all you need is an active e-mail address to get registered.

Facebook:  The most widely used Social Network.  I would not suggest that you link to your own, personal, Facebook page... but, there is an option on Facebook, called "Create a Page"... you can create a page like "Mr. Harming's classroom" or something like that, where you post any and all information about your classes.

Also important:  Privacy settings - this will apply for all social networks.... I would set all educational privacy settings to private... so that they cannot be seen by the public at large, but only by people that you "approve".

Twitter:  Twitter is the fastest growing social network.  In fact, 53% of all Twitter users have been members for less than a year...compared to 19% of Facebook users.  Twitter is growing rapidly.  In addition to growing rapidly, it is the preferred social media of choice among young adults  (the 18 to 29 age demographic is the largest on Twitter).

 In Twitter, you post short messages (140 characters or less).  A great tool for announcements and things of that nature (Science Test Thursday!).  In Twitter, there is also a feature within your profile that allows you to connect your "Tweets" with your Facebook account.  So you post your message on twitter, and it goes on both Twitter and Facebook.

Google+:  Google Plus is basically Google's version of Facebook.  Since it was "late to the game" (meaning started AFTER Facebook and Twitter) it is not as widely used (yet).  However, Google+ has some features that the other networks do not have... or have since adopted in tying to "catch up".
-Video Chat... Google+ calls this a "hangout", and it allows you to video chat (think Skype) right over your Google+ account.
-Control your message - Google+ has a feature called "Circles".  In "Circles" you can choose who you send your message to.  You can create as many circles as you like "Students" "Parents" "Co-workers" and then share them with who you like.  Not long after Google+ went Public....Facebook tried to copy this format, and do something similar.
-Follow other social media - If you use the Google Chrome Internet Browser - You can add an "Ap" called "Streamified"... what streamified will do... is post all the messages from your facebook, twitter and other social media accounts....right in your Google+ stream!

In my opinion... and take this for what it is worth, because I tend to love most Google products.  But Google+, is the best and most advanced social network out there.  However, since it is the least used of the 3 I have mentioned here, it may not reach as many people... (unless you use Streamified).

Again... I want to Re-Emphasize...
If you want to use a social network for classroom/educational purposes.... make sure that you have set your privacy settings...so that you can control who sees your message!  Very Important!

If you are interested in starting or setting up a social network... but don't know where to begin, please don't hesitate to contact me:  Mark.Harming@k12.sd.us .  I'll be glad to give you some tips.

Trivia Answer:  Al Capone

1 comment:

  1. Interesting Stats! I remember when instant messengers where the deal, then we got ICQ to monitor and interact on all of them at once; waiting to see the next ICQ for social media, Google+ may get there first? How about a "tablet" comparison blog? Looking at the Nexus 10...