Monday, June 15, 2015

What Connected Educators Do Differently: Key Connector 2 Learn What They Want, When They Want, How They Want

There are some great conversations going on in this blog this summer!! Thank you all for your willingness to ask questions and to share your knowledge and experiences with other participants. And a big thank you to Michelle Green from the eLearning team, our social media guru, who responded to quite a few comments last week. Be sure to look back at older conversations to see if there have been responses to your comments or to other comments that might be helpful to you.

This chapter discussed Twitter hashtags, Twitter chats, and Edcamps. What experience do you have with any of these? If you are very experienced at any of these, please share your wisdom, how you got started, etc. with participants who may be new. I would like to recommend that you use #INeLearn to connect with other educators in Indiana. You should also consider participating in the #INeLearn Twitter chats on Thursday nights at 9pm Eastern/8pm Central. Check out the #INeLearn chat blog for information about the chat, including upcoming chat topics and archives of past chats. This is a great beginner chat. Susie Highley mentioned EdCampIndy, which was this past Friday. I'm sure she'd be happy to share a bit about EdCamps. If you are interested in participating in face-to-face PD this summer, be sure to check out the Summer of eLearning opportunities. Great PD very close to home!

For next week we will be reading "Key Connector 3 Embrace the Three Cs: Communication, Collaboration, and Community."

154 comments:

  1. The district I taught in offered a lot of professional development but you can never get all the information you need during the school day/year. I love the anytime/anywhere access we have to professional development as teachers. The what, when, how really allows us to personalize our learning. I'm going to check out the #INeLearn twitter chat this week.

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  2. I have absolutely zero experience with hashtags. I thought they were just silly things that kids wrote at the end of their tweet or Facebook status until I started clicking on them. One of the first hashtags I used after learning the truth was #IStandwithRitz. I am intrigued by the various Twitter chats I have learned about, and I hope to remember them this week. I would love to attend an EdCamp. I'm so glad I am learning about many of these things now so that I can start using them in August. I will look forward to the #INeLearn chat this week. I've added so many new people to follow this week and last, and I am finding so many interesting articles and ideas to share with my colleagues as well. Twitter is definitely NOT what I thought it was before I started reading this text! Thank you!

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    1. I too have zero experience with hashtags and also thought it was just some silly thing. I too have learned a lot about Twitter since reading this book.

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  3. I am very new to Twitter and only recently created an account. I also thought that hashtags were meaningless words kids used to describe their messages. I had no idea that they were actually links to other chats and other communicators that could provide so much more information to me. I have never attended an EdCamp - nor did I hear about them before this chapter. I am honestly still confused about the Twitter process, but I have yet to participate in a Twitter chat - remembering when they all are and which ones to attend will be my first obstacle to tackle. I love the information that I am finding, but do not yet feel that it is more than just random pieces of information that do not really connect. I will try to get involved in a chat soon so that I can wrap my head around how this process works.

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    1. I could have written that^^! That is exactly how I feel at this point. It's also taking me a little while to wrap my mind around all of this, but I am excited to figure it all out!

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    2. I completely am right there with you Teresa with the whole hashtag thing. In still unsure when and where I am to put them.

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    3. Even though I have had a Twitter account for a while I don't really know how to use it properly and couldn't figure out hashtags. The hard time is setting a time to work out the kinks and watch videos to help use them properly.

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    4. Ditto for me. I just started my twitter account and have no clue what to do with it! There has been a lot of information given and I too still need to figure it all out.

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    5. Ditto for me. I just started my twitter account and have no clue what to do with it! There has been a lot of information given and I too still need to figure it all out.

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    6. I definitely think Twitter is something you need to play around with. I think this book does a great job of breaking it up, especially with the "Take 5" section. That's where I would start if I were you. Also, use your PLN! Any question you have, tweet it, and someone, somewhere is going to be willing to answer/help. That's what's so great about Twitter - everyone WANTS to be there and connect.

      Lara, in terms of hashtags, I tend to put them at the end of my tweets. And any time you want to connect with others or tweeting about a book or are participating in a chat, you can hashtag! I can promise you that you will not over hashtag! :)

      Good luck to you all!

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    7. Oh, and feel free to follow me and ask me any questions you may have! @MissSchlo_EN

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  4. I like the ability to find learning opportunities that are relevant for my work. Most of the professional development at school is geared toward classroom teachers. I like to find new information related to school counseling.

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    1. Jenny- I know it's not exactly what you were talking about, but I remember from Key Connector 2 that there was a twitter chat heard towards school counselors!

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  5. When I find resources to share I use a hashtag that relates to the group whose members might also be interested in that information such as #mathteacher #Spanishteacher. Hashtags are also a good way to centralize tweets at conferences such as the one my local district held last week #WISE15 (Wabash Wise). Searching that hashtag anyone may see what happens at the conference and often participants and presenters add comments and direct tweets to individuals that further connect and network beyond the conference experience. In this same way chat participants add the hashtag in order to link their comments and often become followers of each other. A fun and worthwhile result of participating in #INeLearn chats resulted for me last week in attending a #WISE15 conference session in which two presenters were also people I had previously made a connection on the Thursday evening chats.

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    1. I have always just read things on twitter and haven't shared anything. This gives me ideas of how to share things with others.

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    2. Tammy,

      I attended Day 1 of #WISE15 last week at Northfield HS and was really cativated with the use and value of hashtags. I didn't really know that they could be use a way to file or sort information on Twitter. Thanks to the #WISE15 hashtag I was able to get quite a bit of information about Day 2 of the conference even though I did not attend.

      Prior to this I had only used hashtags as motivating tool for students on our high school softball team account.

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    3. Tammy, what Twitter chats do you normally join? I think I'm going to try one this week or next week!

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    4. Karlan, I am most familiar with #INeLearn on Thursdays 9-10 p.m. Load some version of a tweetdeck if you don't already have one set up; it makes following the chat very easy. Another one that I find interesting is #teacheredchat on Mondays 9-10 p.m., but I have participated in it less. Let me know if you discover a good one for math.

      P-Dub, if I had known I could have met you face to face at Wabash WISE, I would have made an effort to find you and introduced you to four of five others of us from same school district on this blog.

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    5. I am attending one of the elearning conferences later this summer and hope they have a session on hashtags and how to get more value for your time.

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  6. I have very limited experience with hashtags My daughter attempted to help me a couple years ago when I first made an attempt at a Twitter. I think this chapter helped me understand how to use the hashtag to find relevant tweets for topics related to my interests. I plan to try some twitterchats this summer so I can broaden my experience. The information provided at the end of the chapter will definitely help find the hashtags to search and to find some chats to join.

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  7. I thought hashtags were only for instagram and I had so many questions forming as I explored twitter about the hashtags. When I started to read Ch. 2 I was so happy to get those questions answered. I have seen a lot about the EdCamps but could not find one to attend this summer close to where I live and with an available date. I do hope to attend one in the future. I am busy trying to follow people but find all of this so very time consuming. I am glad to FINALLY be out of school so that hopefully I can give this more attention. As I start to follow someone and start reading their tweets I find myself following their links to very interesting and helpful information and before I know it I have been on twitter for an hour! I am starting to really love it. I currently spend lots of time on Pinterest and I find a huge amount of helpful information on Pinterest too! I think the chats will be a challenge! I am also very connected with the FACS List Serve online. That is another excellent way for FACS teachers to share information. I get almost daily emails and the information is very useful. I don't think I would be the teacher I am today without the list serve! And it is great to go to the FACS Conference every year and meet up with people you have met through the list serve. Again, this is learning what I want, when I want and how I want. This is how I get my professional development. My school system does not offer any for FACS and limited for other teachers.

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    1. I'm also a FACS teacher and I love the list serve, pinterest, and conference. I think just like getting used to pinterest and list serve (and learning connection) Twitter will follow suit!

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    2. I totally agree Amanda. Reading this book is definitely already expanding my educational world! When I started teaching (years ago) there was only "the book" and now I hardly use the textbook - except for research. I think I tried to follow you- but it says "pending"? I just need to learn how to keep up with the pace of twitter!

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    3. I think the summer is a great time to discover and try these new things. I also spend a lot of time on Pinerest and have used several things in my classroom. That is unfortunate that your school district does not provide any professional development for FACS teachers.

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    4. I am a FACS teacher as well. I find myself using the same resources that you discuss above. And I find that it is very easy to consume a lot of time with those resources. Don't get me wrong, I value every bit of it. My fear is that trying to put one more into my schedule is going to cause me to spend time away form my class preparation. Any thoughts on how to prioritize and get the most for the time spent? I will have 6 different preps this coming school year.

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    5. It's interesting when you search the #FACS hashtag on twitter; there definitely are some other FACS teachers contributing and using the hashtag. There are some other things people are using it for, but you might make some good connections there. I was looking on Cybraryman's hashtag page http://cybraryman.com/edhashtags.html and the great chat page https://sites.google.com/site/twittereducationchats/education-chat-calendar Is there something for FACS under another name? What you teach is so important that I was surprised I didn't find it.

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  8. Since I have been on social media, including Twitter/Facebook/Instagram, I have always used hashtags. Some of the ways I have used them are through events including weddings, baby showers, professional conferences, etc. I knew that the hashtag helped people so they could label their pictures and posts. While others could search the specific hashtag and could stay informed or look through pictures from that event. But I really learned to use them by observing how my connections would hashtag.

    In chapter 2, it was nice to get a good feel of what a hashtag really is and how they are used. Now as I post, I pay attention to what I am posting and put in the proper hashtags. That way if connections are searching for a specific topic, my post will appear.

    Eventually, sooner rather than later, I would like to experience a twitter chat. I just have not gotten up the courage to do it. I was unsure of when chats were and how to find the right one for me. The chapter did help. Now, I have set a goal to start slow, and to find a chat that best fits what I am interested in learning about.

    I have not had the opportunity to participate in an Edcamp, and honestly, I had never heard of them until reading this book. But someday I hope to participate in one. Being the teacher and the learner at the same time, and to have the chance to have a say in the topic, sounds like something I am interested in.

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  9. When I have remembered to post to one of my Twitter accounts, it's kind of fun to cleverly summarize my post with a little twist! I've never been able to join a chat since they're rather late for me - our days begin around 3:15 am...guess I'll just have to read the posts.
    I hadn't really thought about searching for pertinent information using a hashtag. There are some things I would really like support or information about in order to do my job better!

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    1. Hi Crystal. '
      Did you see that one of the people to follow this week was an instructional coach? I think there was a hashtag associated with it. There is just so much technology out there to integrate, it is difficult to sift through it all and decide what to use. See ya'. Rhonda :)

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  10. Since I have started using Twitter, I have used hashtags. Although I have had a facebook account since I was in college, I didn’t see the point of using hashtags, till now. At my school, we use hashtags to group our photos and posts together. We also have a hashtag that we use for our school corporation. This way it is easy for staff and parents to find posts/pictures. This chapter really helped me understand twitter chats and edcamps. After reading this chapter I am very interested in participating in these. I feel the best place for me to start is the #INeLearn Twitter chats on Thursday nights. I would love to be part of an Edcamp. I recently became aware of the Disney Edcamp, http://www.edcampmagic.com. I also follow them on twitter @EdCampMagic. I also follow @EdCampGlobal. I would to find some edcamps in Indiana. Does anyone know of any Edcamps?

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    1. Jaime,

      I recently became aware of the #INeLearn chats on Thursday and look forward ro being involved in one of those in the upcoming weeks. I had not been aware of Edcamps until reading the text, either. I have dabbed in a Twitter chat on LinkedIN in a group called #leadingwithgiants. It is a leadership group focused on various topics associated with leadership. It has been very thought provoking and informative.

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    2. edcamp Fort Wayne is coming up on July 23. You can see the complete calendar on the edcamp wiki http://edcamp.wikispaces.com/ I have also been to edcamps in Chicago and Columbus, OH. New this year is edcamp Global, which will be online July 31-August 1. I saw the information about edcamp Magic in Orlando, too. Troy Cockrum from Indianapolis went.

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    3. Thank you for sharing! I will have to look into the #leadingwithgiants and edcamps calendar!

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  11. #I #Love #Hastags. Okay for real though, I think they are awesome I don’t use them as frequently in my professional life as I do my personal life though. I made sure as I was reading this weeks chapter that I wrote down some of those # so that I can jump on board when those chats start. I’ve also been curious about the Tweetdeck.com that the text suggestions. My thought process is that it makes the tweets look more like a message format, anyone have experience with that? As far as EdCamps I would love to attend one, but didn’t find out close by. Our school did have a “Tech Tuesday” going for a while we would meet every other week and I really enjoyed them but they just kind of stopped because of a low attendance rate. I’m interested in talking with our technology and curriculum director of having one that would be considered “unofficial”. I just got word today that we will be migrating over to GoogleClassroom this year and so I intend to connect with anyone and everyone who uses it!

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    1. Responding about TweetDeck: this feature puts into columns as many different hashtags, other groups or Twitter elements that I want to see at the same time. This is especially helpful for participating in a chat so that I can visually keep separate the tweets from chat participants vs. all the feeds from any other followers. Some people participate in multiple chats at the same time and a tweet deck is especially helpful for keeping straight what is being discussed in each chat.

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    2. Just explored the TweetDeck for the first time…I think this will be a much easier way to participate and follow chats.

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    3. Love TweetDeck and Twubs- both make following a chat SO much easier on Twitter!

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    4. Your post reminded me of the first time I had heard of hashtags. If you have the time check out this clip from Jimmy Fallon https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=57dzaMaouXA . Too funny!

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  12. #I #Love #Hastags. Okay for real though, I think they are awesome I don’t use them as frequently in my professional life as I do my personal life though. I made sure as I was reading this weeks chapter that I wrote down some of those # so that I can jump on board when those chats start. I’ve also been curious about the Tweetdeck.com that the text suggestions. My thought process is that it makes the tweets look more like a message format, anyone have experience with that? As far as EdCamps I would love to attend one, but didn’t find out close by. Our school did have a “Tech Tuesday” going for a while we would meet every other week and I really enjoyed them but they just kind of stopped because of a low attendance rate. I’m interested in talking with our technology and curriculum director of having one that would be considered “unofficial”. I just got word today that we will be migrating over to GoogleClassroom this year and so I intend to connect with anyone and everyone who uses it!

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  13. #I #Love #Hastags. Okay for real though, I think they are awesome I don’t use them as frequently in my professional life as I do my personal life though. I made sure as I was reading this weeks chapter that I wrote down some of those # so that I can jump on board when those chats start. I’ve also been curious about the Tweetdeck.com that the text suggestions. My thought process is that it makes the tweets look more like a message format, anyone have experience with that? As far as EdCamps I would love to attend one, but didn’t find out close by. Our school did have a “Tech Tuesday” going for a while we would meet every other week and I really enjoyed them but they just kind of stopped because of a low attendance rate. I’m interested in talking with our technology and curriculum director of having one that would be considered “unofficial”. I just got word today that we will be migrating over to GoogleClassroom this year and so I intend to connect with anyone and everyone who uses it!

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    1. We often do "Techie Tuesday" training before school too. We are also using Google Classroom next year so I'll be looking into that as well.

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    2. Hi, Kari!
      I started using Google Classroom this year with my 4th graders. It worked out really well and was easy for them once we had some experience. The kids were showing each other how to use it. I didn't do much up front instruction. If you took any classes in college in Blackboard or even Moodle, works about the same. It was easier for my students to resubmit their work. I did really love that feature. D :)

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    3. I used Google Classroom with my 3rd graders this year and loved it. It was so easy for them to submit their work and get to websites/videos quickly. On the teacher end, it's also very easy to quickly grade and return assignments. Good Luck!

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  14. I have not used hashtags, twitterchats or edcamps. I did take a look at them after reading but with are district going to Canvas for the ipads I can't see the advantages. I may try one of them with my students and see how it goes I am sure they help students.

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  15. Thinking about Key Connector 2…I LOVE hashtags. I love finding an interesting one and reading the related posts. I really started to think about them when watching Jimmy Fallon on the Tonight Show…he tweets out a hashtag every Wednesday and then shares the results the next day…fun to follow and read. I have been more of a follower or really a consumer of twitter and tweeting and hashtags. I've been reading and taking it all in…NOW, I need to become more of a sharer and creater…still a little afraid to jump in. I am determined to make it happen…#DOSummer2015

    I learned about EDCAMPS last year at the All Write summer institute. I attended a session with Colby Sharp (@colbysharp) and he talked about EDCAMPS. I have not attended one…but would love to. Just need to find the right fit for me with timing and location.

    Love the suggestions for the Follow 5, Find 5 and Take 5. I follow these five: Donalyn Miller @donalynbooks, Colby Sharp @colbysharp, Franki Sibberson @frankisibberson, Kristin Ziemke @kristinziemke, Christopher Lehman @ichrislehman (These are just a few of my favorites!) Also the Nerdy Book Club @nerdybookclub

    Loving this book study.

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    1. Holly,
      http://clickherenext.com/ @frankisibberson is a great resource. She held a Edcampkids for her students. Her students shared their learning with each other. By visiting her site, I have a better understanding of Edcamps. Thanks for sharing. I followed all of your five.

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    2. Thanks for posting…will have to check out Franki's Edcamp with her students.

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  16. I have used very few #hashtags. I understand what they are and how to use them. Since I do not tweet a lot, I haven’t used them very often. I attended #WISE15 last week, most sessions that I attended encouraged the use of Twitter for professional development and use in the classroom with students and parents. I checked out the #INelearn chat last Thursday. I just watched and read the tweets and learned how a chat is ran . I have only read about EdCamps but I have never participated in one. I have spent a limited time on Twitter each day for two weeks. I have already found many interesting things!








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  17. As hashtags seem to be infiltrating the media, I find myself adding a # to my own thoughts constantly... #Imitebecrazy, #addictedtodietcoke, #IloveSherlock!! #sleepinginrocks. It is evident that Twitter can be a great resource for personal professional development, but how can we use it with our students? Should students be proficient in sifting through the information for some specific purpose?
    I am intrigued by the EDCAMPS...sounds like my kind of conference!!



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  19. I have used twitter hashtags in the past, but rarely use them anymore. I honestly don't tweet too much. I do understand them and find them interesting at times. I am intrigued by the twitter chats. I think they would be fun to participate in on a weekly basis to learn from one another. It inspired me to maybe start up a twitter chat with my students' parents next year. We could have a weekly chat to discuss homework, classroom items, or even up and coming things to look forward to. The ed camps seem interesting, too. I am not sure I am completely sold on them yet, though. I would have to attend one to see how much interaction there is between individuals. My concern would be participation for 4 hours. I think PD is a wonderful aspect of education and I learn so much from presenters. Just not sure how I feel about sharing ideas for 4 to 5 hours on different topics. Great chapter!

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  20. I think you have an interesting idea there with the weekly parent chat. You would have to lay out the ground rules with them so privacy is maintained. If you do try it, let us know how it came off. Good luck!

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  21. I, also, thought that the hashtag use was just some popular fad; I had no idea the hashtags actually led to additional information. On my FB account this past Spring, I made up a hashtag to kind of go along with the crowd...Now I know that I led people to a non-existent place. I agree with the others that these first two connectors have been eye opening. I am out to tackle the take action steps at the end of each chapter and anxious to see the results...

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  22. Twitter has changed my professional life, and I have been to several edCamps: 4 edcampIndy's, 3 edCampChicago's, and one edCampColumbus (plus nErDcamp, but that's a little different).

    The fact that you can use hashtags anytime to share, and to search makes them very powerful. Since November I've been a regular participant in #BFC530 It's a 15 minute "spark chat" each day with a single topic. It just switched to a "slow chat" format today. For the next two weeks, the topic will be posted at 5:30 am ET, and you can respond whenever during the day. I'm the "moderator" this coming Friday, although it's not quite the same when the chat lasts all day long.

    Here's a chat schedule, although some may be taking a break. https://sites.google.com/site/twittereducationchats/education-chat-calendar
    There are still a lot of schools on the east coast who have weeks of school left, though!

    And here are some hashtags, courtesy of cybraryman (who else?) http://cybraryman.com/edhashtags.html
    At edCampIndy last Friday, one of the facilitators recommended the "new to twitter" chat, Nt2t, which is at on Saturday mornings at 9 am ET

    There are some schools beginning to model some of their PD on the edcamp style: letting staff come up with things they would like to learn, with people volunteering to lead it.

    I am glad that this book was selected!

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    1. Cybraryman rocks- I use his sites a lot!

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    2. Agreed! I love the Cybraryman site!

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    3. Susie- Thanks for sharing these great resources!

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    4. Unfortunately, I have been able to attend EdCampIndy only once. However, I have had the opportunity to attend a couple of other EdCamp style sessions. I am amazed at what seems to start off as utter chaos can actually be so helpful. I am also noticing an increase in some conference presenters modeling their own sessions in the edcamp style. I recommend to those of you that haven't experienced an EdCamp to check it out. And thank you Susie for keeping us informed of all the great PD opportunities.

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    5. Thanks for all the great suggestions.

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  23. Okay, I updated my profile, replaced the egghead, put up a cool banner, did four tweets --one of each type, and started following some educators. Not even close to 50. Very tiring...@SraMavSpan Rhonda :)

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    1. Update on previous work...my Iphone keeps notifying me of followers now. I really do not want to be followed because I think it will create a time issue if I Tweet a resource or an idea a day...I need a more time manageable way to take of advantage of Twitter. Perhaps I will follow some others' MO and "Lurk" in a chat! Hats off to those who have really dug deeply this week into the Twitter offerings. Maybe I can catch up to you this weekend and compare notes. Very excited to read so much connectedness happening among us. Great book choice and away we keep going!

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    2. Update 2 and question: I had viewed the You Tube on how to get more followers on Twitter...what would be the benefit of this, truly? I think of friends and family who were obsessed with how many people "liked" their FB postings. I am not really in to gathering the masses. Quality versus quantity? Maybe you never know with whom you might connect with a new Follower. I need to think some more on this one...

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  24. I have zero experience personally using hashtags. I know what they are and find myself using others at times. It's a good way to search for related information on a given topic.

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  25. I use hastags frequently, but my real draw to them comes in being able to follow different hashtags. They are a great way of professional development. There are several that I follow regularly through my tweetdeck. For anyone that has not used tweetdeck I would encourage you to check it out to follow the differnt hashtags that interest you. You can search a hashtag as well to see what is posted using it. There are times that I will participate in the chats and then there are times that I am just a lurker seeing what everyone else is putting out there. Here is a link to some educational chats, the day and the time they take place. https://sites.google.com/site/twittereducationchats/education-chat-official-list On my tweetdeck I have 38 active columns that I watch regularly. Some of my favorites are #tlap, #INeLearn, #ChristianEducators, #satchat, #satchatwc, #ditchbook, #gafesummit, #nbtchat, and several leadership chats. My assistant says I need an intervention from my twitter addiction. If you are not sure about participating right away in a chat, just lurk for a while. Once you get going with it, the hour will fly right by. I even have alarms set on my phone to remind me when a chat is getting ready to start so I can be there if I am able.

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  26. Once again I find myself living in the "stone ages" when it comes to technology. This chapter contained information of what seemed like a variety of foreign species to me. :) As I wrote before, I have still not jumped the gun as of yet on a Twitter account and I most definitely have not attended an edcamp. I have heard of hashtags though! I thought they were just a new trendy way of making points to others on Twitter or even in everyday conversations. (Yes, I have actually heard people make a statement and then say "hashtag sarcasm" or such. I was unaware of all that these little markings signify. I feel as though I have much to learn!!
    Edcamps sound interesting. I enjoy attending conferences and for the most part enjoy the structure they provide. However, I can see how Edcamps could be a beneficial way for educators to connect and learn. Since "the learning is driven more by the participants than it is by the organizers (pg23), it would be interesting to experience how the unconference is guided or facilitated. Maybe some day I will have the opportunity to attend one!

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    1. I am with you Andrea. My plan was to set up a Twitter last week and I just couldn't bring myself to spend the time on it. I love the idea of having a PLN but am overwhelmed by all of the lingo and trying to make sense of it. I did look at some decamp opportunities. Now that I am aware I hope to be able to involve myself soon. Maybe that will be a way to launch into Twitter.

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  27. I am still pretty new to hashtags. I honestly just forget to use them. There are times when I have followed a chat but not really participated. My goal is to participate in chats this summer. I think using hashtags will help narrow the focus and really connect me with others interested in the same topics I am.

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  28. My favorite Twitter chats are #tlap for Teach Like a Pirate, #sstlap for Social Studies Teach Like a PIrate, #sschat for Social Studies Chat, and #wrldchat for World History Chat, though I sometimes jump in on other chats. I use the hashtag #STEM a lot. (I remember when I first learned about hashtags- two years ago, one of my 6th grade students wanted his nickname to be #awesome but he told me in class like it was "hashtag awesome" so I called him
    "hashtag" as a nickname for a while- I was clueless and the kids thought it was funny!) I have never been to an Edcamp, but I have followed conference tweets from #ISTE and other conferences- it's just not the same as being there live in person!

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    1. Can I ask what "Teach Like a Pirate" is?? I've seen several people reference that on this blog..?? Just curious!! Thank you!!

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  29. I truly had no real understanding of hashtags before reading this chapter. I just spent 30 minutes playing around searching different hashtags relevant to chemistry and biology. I found some interesting stuff although I have to say that I still like some of my facebook sites better at this point. Maybe I just need to get more familiar with twitter. I am very concerned about the time issue. I spend lots of hours on my own PD in Biology and Chem already. I know how easy it is for digital media to absorb time. Just have to find an appropriate balance. I found an appropriate monthly chat and will try that when it happens the last Sunday of the month. Hopefully I can develop some habits over the summer and then continue the useful ones into the school year. I do attend science conferences each year and since they usually have lots of topics I am interested in I am not sure about the Edcamp idea. Probably need to attend one to see how it compares to the conferences I am used to attending.

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    1. follow me @RMarkstahler. I have found some hashtags relevant to Biology. I have not spend time looking at Chemistry since I am not teaching it.

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  30. I have enjoyed participating and lurking in quite a few chats. My favorite one this year was #geniushour because I was trying out Genius hour for the first time. @joykirr and fellow Hoosier @DonWettrick were catalysts for me to be successful with GH and for me to embrace Twitter. Many other teachers participating in Genius Hour also gave me great advice through their tweets and articles they retweeted.

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    1. What types of things do they talk about in genius hour?! Sounds interesting!

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  31. I am very new to Twitter and am anxious to get started on the hashtag subjects. I have to say that it is all very intimidating. I realize that just jumping in and exploring the different sites will make it easier. I plan to try the suggestions in the readings.

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    1. I am new to all of this as well, BUT once I created an account, looked around, started searching, it all came together. Today I used my first hashtag and it felt great--empowering. I've been on summer break a week, but feel more professional by doing these new, education-related activities. I've spent more time than I thought browsing, but know I have the time right now, so the timing of this book study was perfect for me. My handle is @pschlup_schlup.

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  32. I use hastags in chats, but that's as far as I've gotten in using them. I use https://sites.google.com/site/twittereducationchats/ for a daily organized schedule of education Twitter chats. I'm still getting used to how fast the chats flow (because I want to read every tweet). I know that's not a reasonable goal but still try to do it anyway. I do use Tweetdeck to help. So far these chats have been the most helpful in my PD...the what, when, and how : #Nt2t, #mnlead, #teacherfriends, #christianeducators, #edtechat, and #satchat. I wanted to attend one of the Summer eLearning opportunities but time and location didn't match up this summer. Our elementary curriculum director organized an "unconference" of sorts for our summer PD after our teacher work day in which she called for volunteers to share an expertise a couple of months beforehand. It was called "Spice it Up Diner" and participants chose the order in which they went to the 6 different sessions. I presented the Yummy Technology Twix. One of the items I promoted was using Twitter as a PD tool and through feedback of my session I am currently trying to get the district to commit to using a uniform hashtag to share classroom happenings. Not very many of the district's elementary teachers use Twitter, but I'm trying to change that. We'll see what happens :)

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    1. I use that websites for a schedule of education chats too. It is a great way to see which chats are scheduled when! We use a school hashtag and I also have a classroom hashtag too. Twitter is a great way to share what is happening in the classroom with parents and also with other classrooms. I absolutely love using it with my students :) I hope you can get more of your elementary teachers on board with it!

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  33. So I signed into www.tweetdeck.com and explored the four columns. I also played with #hastag searches. I discovered some interesting resources and new people to follow. This week in School City of Hammond there were different workshops. To my surprise, they had their own #sch feeds, #schmath, #schk12, and #schliteracy. Those attending shared what they took away for the workshops. Edcamp was new information for me. I looked for sites offering training for Edcamp. I followed one of Holly Wrights shares to find EdcampKids (http://clickherenext.com/ @frankisibberson). A teacher held a Edcamp in her classroom and her students ran stations to teach fellow students something they had learned or knew how to do. This was really exciting for find. I could see me using it in the classroom. Thanks Holly!

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  34. A whole new world has become much more clear. If someone had referred to "#" as a filing system three years ago, my twitter life would have been in a much better state. I loaded TweetDeck into chrome and I LOVE IT! For me, part of the issue with using twitter is the "sound byte" nature of it. I hate that I have to scroll down through screens and screens to scan what has happened in twitter land over the last day/hours/multiple days. I'm a visual person and having multiple columns and ways to search for things works much better for me. I'm looking forward to #musedchat I've already found some valuable resources (a great composition app for chrome) by poking around in that hashtag. Now, if I could just get my students to say "sharp" in the music room instead of "hashtag".....

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    1. I love TweetDeck! It makes following chats so much easier!!!

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  35. When I was brand new to Twitter, I totally did not understand what a # meant. Kids would try to explain, but it was just not clicking. Just recently Karlan Varner (a member of the e-Book club) and I presented at #Wise15 in Wabash. We were discussing what hashtag we would use. She kept giving me ideas, and I would ask "isn't that already used?"
    I am finally getting it. It is okay that the # was used, that is what is connecting people, and now I am running away with it. Karlan also set me up with a tweetdeck and I am following #apbio, #biology, #ADEchat, #INeLearn, to name a few. I have found people I follow and see who they are following.

    I have found a couple of chats....now question for anyone that might know this.....I don't have to necessarily be on twitter at that time, right? if I want to participate it would be good, but I can go back and look at the chat later, right?

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    1. That's part of the power of a hashtag-- you can search it any time, and you can use the hashtag any time. For you to be able to interact, ask questions, etc, it works best if you are in the chat time, but not required. If you are going back over tweets from a chat anytime in the past, you can still tweet to the person and ask about what they posted. School librarians add on the #tlchat hashtag all the time when they find something valuable worth sharing. #INeLearn people do the same; they share things outside the 9 pm ET time frame.

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  36. I am so new to twitter! I knew about #hashtags and chats (but have never used them), but I've never heard of an Edcamp. I feel like a whole new world of information and professional contacts has just opened up for me. I plan on trying a chat later this week, and I'm searching for one that's specific to kindergarten education.

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    1. You could tweet with the hashtag #kinderchat and ask anyone if they know of a chat schedule! I am sure there is one!

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  37. Wow...I never realized the power of a hashtag! I will definitely try it out soon, especially with some of the good suggestions that people here have. The Edcamps, too, sound intriguing. As someone who is not at the top of the proficiency list in technology, the idea of in-person learning and sharing is really attractive.

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    1. I totally agree that I had no idea that power and use of a hashtag. I have already tried searching use the hashtag and have found TONS of great information. I encourage you to give it a try. You will love it and be amazed!

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    2. It is like 21st century magic! Type it in PD appears!

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  38. Having a Twitter account for several year, I was shocked by the use of hashtags. I thought hashtags were just a 'cute' way to highlight information. I had no idea that I could click on a hashtag or search using a hashtag. I have gone a bit hashtag crazy. I have found tons of good information using #sped an #specialeducation. I am very excited to keep using this tool for new resources!

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    1. I too was confused with the hashtags. I would see one Facebook or other social media people typing in crazy hashtags like #mamaneedsanapandits3:00.......I am thinking what the heck is the point of that? Now I know that it's just a "joke" on the hashtag and that's not really the intent of the hashtags used professionally. This book has made it more clear. Now that I can spot both kinds it makes a lot more sense to me!

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  39. Hashtags are great for sharing and finding information about a specific topic. Often when I have been a teaching conferences, there have been hashtags associated with the conference itself so that participants can share information about the conference with each other. I also use a hashtag with my classroom so that parents can easily find information pertaining to our class. I also love participating in Twitter chats. My favorite chats are #tlap, #1to1techat, #2ndChat. They are a great way for educators across the world to share ideas! There are a lot of websites out there that list weekly Twitter chats and their times. My favorite is: https://sites.google.com/site/twittereducationchats/. I have not heard of Edcamps, but I am really interested in researching them more.

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  40. Although I would not consider myself a “Twitter rookie,” I am hashtag shy. I do like searching and finding relevant information using #s. I am hesitant to implement them myself. I think that has more to do with my self-confidence than anything else.

    The Twitter chats I have participated in were worthwhile. My problem seems to be remembering when they occur. I admit I am not a regular attendee.

    I would love to attend an Edcamp! I am co-coordinating a Summer of eLearning conference with Barry Stone in Vincennes this summer (July 14-15). The hashtag is #ewonderland2015 (tiny.cc/ewonderland ). One of our sessions is an “un-session,” which we hope will be similar to an “un-conference” experience. We have classrooms divided by content areas and facilitators assigned to the rooms in case they are needed. We hope attendees use this time to collaborate and share resources; however, as with other Edcamps, you never know what topics will come up. I have heard a lot of positives about un-conferences, so I am hopeful this session will be worthwhile.

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  41. I have definitely been enjoying the reading but as far as conprehending the whole Twitter thing in still trying to figure it all out. I've really venture out and built my network of followers in a few different areas. The problem is keeping up. I always want to do it all but know I cannot. There is so much information out there is crazy.

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    1. I attended an edCamp last week and one of the topics was Twitter. They shared a very useful site for Twitter that I have been reading. The website is: cybraryman.com Check it out!

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  42. OK, Learning so much! I did not know about tweetdeck but now I am using it and just learned about a PISD Book Club meeting for the first time tonight in 8 minutes on Dave Burgess's book, Teach Like a Pirate and he will be there. I'm also in a summer book club for Learn Like a Pirate that I am loving. Last week the author, Paul Solarz, left a comment on my LLAP Blog. I use hashtags some, but mostly for fun. I learning to use them more effectively through some of my summer online studies, like this one. My 4th graders use KidBlog and hashtags are used there for the topics of conversations. We used KidBlog to use the Slice of Life Classroom Challenge by writing every day in March about a "moment" in their lives. Wonderful sharing. We had students leaving comments all over the world. This is sponsored by the blog, Two Writing Teachers. Chekc it out. Highly recommend it! I did the teacher/adult version, and my students did the classroom version. They were very serious about writing every day. Here is a link to our KidBlog http://kidblog.org/SOAR-34SliceofLifeStories/ Slice of LIfe happens every year for the month of March. I am off to tweet on the PISD Book Club. Hope some of you will check it out with me. 2 more minutes.... D :)

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    1. I was thinking of using KidBlog with my 2nd graders and the writing challenge sounds very engaging. Do think 2nd grade is too young for either of these things?

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    2. I'd love to know more about Teach Like a Pirate...

      Tracy, I've used easy blogger to go with my class blog, rather than kid blog. It seemed easier with the way our technology is in my classroom. We've also sliced in the past and it was easier to have kids write their slices in their notebooks, but it truly comes down to what tool would help them do their purpose easier. Does that make sense?

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    3. And if you're up for it, we have a "Learn Like a PIRATE" Twitter chat using the #LearnLAP hashtag every Monday evening from 7-8pm Central (and then "Teach Like a PIRATE" has a chat from 8-9pm Central on the #tlap hashtag immediately afterwards!)

      For the next three weeks, we will continue to break down my book. We're discussing Chapter 5 next week. Hope to see you there!!! :)

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  43. I am so happy to read all the other comments from those of us who are just now getting used to Twitter -- it makes me feel less alone and less behind :) I really had no idea there were so many chats going on to discuss professional issues and bounce ideas off each other. This can definitely be a fast, effective way to grow and learn. However, I also agree with several posts about how there is so much information out there and so much to keep up with, it can be very overwhelming sometimes. Finding time to get it all done is very difficult.

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  44. I created a Twitter account in 2010 but didn't really know what to do with it until a couple of years ago when I began looking into Connected Educator information. I have since then participated in several twitter chats, help set up our staff Twitter hashtag (no actual account yet) and love sharing and learning from others on Twitter.

    I have never been to an Edcamp but look forward to doing that soon. My tech team at work is even talking about doing one in the fall just to see if we can!

    I have participated in Summer of eLearning events for 3 years now. In fact, I was in Lowell yesterday and today at the #engagEDNWI event. As always, a great professional development experience and a great way to meet and network with other educators and professionals in educational technology. If I find the time, I might find another one to attend this summer!

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  45. I had the opportunity to learn about hashtags and a lot of information about twitter at a conference and I even had the young man who presented help me set up my twitter account. The problem was that I did not continue to use what I learned so of course I was lost when I did finally try to apply what I had learned. This time along with reading the book and learning from everyone on the blog, I am determined to understand twitter and become very good at twitting.

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  46. To be honest, I had no clue how helpful hashtags could be. After reading this chapter I have searched for several hashtags and am amazed at what I've found. I'm excited to see what great ideas and things I can learn. I'm also hoping to take part in some Twitter chats as I become more comfortable with Twitter. :)

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    1. I was in the same boat about how hashtags could be used. I thought that they were just cute ways to summarize what the tweet was about. It truly is a great way to search for conversations and groups of people that share a common interest. I have not yet engaged in the Twitter chats but would love to hear how your first experience goes!

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  47. I attended my first edCamp in Indy a week ago (prompted by the free PGP points I could receive) and I thought was very interesting. At first I didn't know what to think about the lack of agenda. As the day progressed, I thought it was a great way to interact with my peers and learn from them. There was a leader that explained a topic relating to technology and lead a very interesting discussion. This edCamp opened my eyes to the practical use of using Twitter for my professional development.

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    1. Kathryn, how did you find out about the EdCamp in Indy? Thanks!

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    2. Kathryn…
      I am interested in how you found about the EdCamp. Thanks:)

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    3. If you look on the website http://Edcamp.wikispaces.com/ it will give you a list of upcoming edcamps. I'm pretty sure there is one in July in Ft. Wayne.

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  48. I really didn't understand hashtags until reading this chapter. It opened my eyes to their use in locating information that is relevant to what you are looking for. I've spent a lot of time this week searching various hashtags and finding people to follow on twitter. I've never participated in a chat on Twitter but will have to try it.

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  49. I am officially "lurking" on the #INeLearn chat! This is my first Twitter chat and it is pretty interesting to see a chat in action. Like many of you, I have minimal experience with Twitter and know what hashtags are only because I asked one of my peers a few years ago. We have had EdCamps as professional development several times at my school. Personally, I like it better than our normal PD because I feel like I have more control over what I am learning. I don't think my faculty is completely on board with it because the last one kind of fizzled out when no one suggested any topics. That could have had something to do with the fact that it was a Monday morning in May. Anyway, I did see one scheduled in Fort Wayne for July 23rd and I might be able to make it my first official EdCamp! I love free PGPs!

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  50. What a fun week! I have been bummed with all the rain we have had, but reminded myself that being stuck inside and not in the garden or on the tennis court has allowed me to tweet, retweet, and attend my first chat at #INeLearn. It was the downtime I needed to really explore twitter and what it has to offer. I am ready to explore tweetdeck, voxer and find more chats to participate in. I am excited about all the resources, articles and individuals I have found to use, read and follow on twitter. On my way to becoming a connected educator and loving it!

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  51. I was an Agriculture Education teacher in the past. We are usually the only ones in our buildings, I think being able to connect and share ideas through twitter will be helpful I am also excited about sharing ideas with other educators when it is convenient for me is great. I am glad to know about using hashtags, this will help me focus.

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  52. I am very inexperienced with Twitter. I do not think I have ever used a hashtag. I did not really understand what they meant. I post on Facebook quite often, but am still hesitant on Twitter. Knowing what all of the hashtags can mean and what they can link you to, I am very intrigued! I am anxious to get on Twitter and start posting using hashtags. I am curious what other people are saying about the same topics I am interested in, especially in relation to my classroom.

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    1. I am with you Laura. I am on Facebook but have not experienced Twitter or hashtags. I am also curious to see what others have to say

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  53. Like many, I am very inexperienced with Twitter. I found the last chapter so informative and had no idea what the hashtags stood for. I actually thought they were just little sayings people threw in when making a post. I still don't like them in the corner of the TV when I am watching certain shows but on a professional level, I think they are great way to connect with others about certain interests and topics! My weeks are finally slowing down and I am looking forward to diving into Twitter more and using hashtags.

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  54. I'm glad to see there are several of us in the same boat as far as knowledge, or lack there of, about Twitter and hashtags. Now that I've taken part in a couple chats, I'm beginning to feel a little more comfortable with Twitter. I searched #preschool and it connected me to fellow preschool educators, great websites, and useful articles. I feel that most of the PD's I've attended are geared more for the elementary level. The main source of information for me is the internet. This will be a great resource and I look forward to the connections I will make through twitter and the knowledge I will gain. I have never heard of Edcamps before reading this section. I will continue to check for updates on edcamps near me that will be discussing topics related to early childhood education.

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  55. Still struggling here! I haven't been spending too much time on Twitter. In the time that I have spent, I don't feel like I am able to find anything that I am looking for. I have been looking for special education people or conversations and I haven't been able to find much. I did see a few posts about the Edcamp in Indy and that looked to be very interesting and something that I might enjoy going to if there are any close by. I have used a few hashtags even though I don't really see the connection to others from using them. I guess I need to spend more time getting knowledgeable and comfortable with how Twitter works in general.

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  56. So I am still very new to this whole Twitter thing and I’ve found myself walking away frustrated. The information regarding hashtags in chapter two was super helpful but I am still feeling overwhelmed. I honestly never understood how hashtags functioned until I read this book. The book keeps saying to start out slow with four tweets a day and I am so overwhelmed by this still! I love the concept of Twitter Chats but again, I think I need to get a handle on regular old tweeting before I move on to the big leagues. Like many of you I also really like the idea of designing my own professional development plan that is unique to myself and my content area.

    Does anyone have any suggestions regarding good social-emotional learning or English literature resources to follow on Twitter??

    Also, what might be a good starter Twitter Chat group for a HS English teacher??

    Thank you!!

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  57. Since I don't have a Twitter account, I don't have experience with any of this. I know people use hashtags on Facebook to share ideas as well, but I've never gotten into that. In fact I didn't even know what in the world it was until recently when I decided to click on one to find out. None of the hashtags I've ever seen on Facebook, though, have been useful. It's mostly just random stuff that nobody would look at. At least I think nobody would bother to look at it. However, I believe that with Twitter the various groups that you can be a part of us the hashtags to share more useful information and ideas so that the groups are actually productive. Again, I have no experience with it, so this is mostly speculation, but I would assume that's what it's used for. As far as Twitter chats, I don't know what that is. I guess I struggle with the idea of thinking that I have enough time to sit on my computer in the evenings and chat with other educators. My evenings are very much about my family and what I need to get done at home. I tend to leave work behind me, but maybe if I got involved in one just once a week or something it could be valuable. Very soon I intend to open a Twitter account so that I will get the most that I can out of this eLearning book club this summer. I don't think I will be able to fully understand what the book is about or what our discussions are about unless I open an account and attempt to learn how to use Twitter. I think that for professional connection purposes, Twitter might be able to be useful, but as social media I'm still skeptical. I don't want to come across as too negative about the whole Twitter idea. My biggest complaint is that I don't like to see people on their phones using social media all the time. I think it's better to be social in person. That is a lot of why I end up being so skeptical of technology. I think our society is losing social skills because of social media. However, again, as a way of sharing ideas and knowledge, it can be useful.

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  58. I tried finding a second grade chat group on Twitter and haven't found one yet...not sure if I'm using the hashtag wrong or not. Anyone else a second grade teacher?

    Recently attended the All Write summer institute. So amazing as always. Was glad to reconnect with some people that I follow on Twitter in real life and glad to add more to who I follow.

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  59. The use of hashtags really confused me until I learned that they were a way to search for comments and groups. I used fake Twitter in my Revolutionary War Unit. I had the kids tweet about the War and what was going on. I was surprised how many of them did not understand hashtags. They loved coming up with clever hashtags and spoke in hashtags for weeks after we were done with the unit. I want to propose that our 8th-grade team use Twitter as a way to communicate and share ideas next year. #AMS 8thgradeteam

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    1. Love this idea! It seems like a great way to connect with students in a way that motivates them and in a language they understand, as well as inspires them to share information. Thanks for sharing!

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  60. This chapter really opened my eyes and helped me to understand hashtags. A light went on...."I finally get it!" My lack of understanding has caused me to steer clear of Twitter. My thinking has completely changed now that I realize that hashtags are the way for me do search for information. I can't wait to see what Twitter has to offer for me professionally. I just opened up tweetdeck.com and began to explore this mode. If anyone has any Twitter chat recommendations for a first grade teacher, please let me know. The chats seem like a powerful way to communicate with other educators. I am really looking forward to pushing my learning to the next level!

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    1. They have hashtags for all the grade levels, #1stchat would be a good one for you.

      I used this site to look up chats, but it is kind of messy, wish I could find one where I could "search for chats."
      https://sites.google.com/site/twittereducationchats/education-chat-calendar

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  61. I am a hands on learner and reading about hashtags is difficult for me. I intend to watch one of the videos suggested at the end of the chapter. Two years ago I was at an eLearning conference and they had a mini Edcamp session. I see the pros and cons with having one. I pick a conference on what is going to be presented and what is going to be beneficial to me. If you to an Edcamp then there might be something of value to you and then again not.

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  62. This chapter has explained hash tags a little more for me, but I went away from Twitter a few years back. I am planning on giving it another try to see what it can do for me professionally!

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  63. I am excited that I am no longer an egghead on Twitter. I am also thrilled to finally understand what all the hashtags are actually used for. This week I have spent time searching various hashtags as well as checking out Tweet Deck for the first time. Before reading this chapter, I had no idea what a Twitter chat or Edcamp even meant. I did look at the Twitter Chat on Thursday night #INeLearn. Although I was not an active participant, I learned how this worked and am looking forward to participating in a Twitter Chat soon.

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  64. I am slowly embarking on this twitter journey. I attended the All Write conference last week and was amazed at how quickly presenters or audience members pushed out comments on twitter. I felt a little overwhelmed trying to keep up. Reading about # made things a little clearer, but I have a ways to go before I feel confident navigating around twitter. I still find myself being a reader and user of valuable information found on twitter, but not quite a contributor yet.

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    1. Jacqui: I've always thought that the #allwrite conference sounded magnificent. I did follow the hashtag a little last week to see what was being shared. From twitter, it looked like Lester Laminack's ending keynote was a huge success.You will get used to the idea of sharing more. I went to a conference last fall and saw all of the people on tweetdeck and realized I should give it another chance. I had been on it before and felt overwhelmed, so decided to try again. You'll get there!

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  65. There is also Google edCamp in Wayne Township on the west side of Indianapolis on July 9. https://edcamp.wikispaces.com/edcamp+Google
    http://www.doe.in.gov/elearning/2015-summer-elearning-list

    I just registered'; it shows only 6 tickets left.

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  66. I attended the Future Ready Summit (#futureready) in Chicago last week. My mind is on "connected educator" overload. Also attending the conference was Jimmy Casas (one of the author's of this book).

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  67. I'm a little late with my comments on Chapter 2...summer just seems to go so fast! In the limited amount of time I have used twitter, I have found hashtags to be very helpful. Definitely planning to check out the EdCampsp!

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  68. As an instructional coach, the opening quote from Seymour Papert was very powerful for me. Rarely do I reference Twitter when I am meeting with teachers, I need to build a collection of hashtags and chats where I can direct teachers, like the New Teacher Chat would be great or the grade level chats. It is important I connect them to other ways of PD besides what I can offer in the building and what our district offers during the summer. I think I need a PD on Twitter at our summer retreat!

    I think hashtags was the piece of Twitter I had the hardest time understanding when I first joined. My VP explained it beautifully one day. "They are intended to be used as a bookmark, but other times people put them as a joke or a tongue in cheek." That seemed to make it all click and I could get started using it.

    I have a few hashtags I follow and most of the big ones have already been mentioned. #edtech, #flipclass #edchat #techedchat #tlap #kinderchat, 1stchat, ---> #5thchat I normally just type the hashtag in and search for it, then favorite the things I want to save. Does anyone have a good Title 1 or Instructional Coaches hashtag? Does anyone know a way or an app to save your favorite hashtags? I always forget them!

    I have also read archives of Twitter chats, or "just watched" but last night I was able to jump in to #edtechchat. I responded to all the questions, grabbed many new followers, and even made some connections to other educators to share our student blogs with in the fall. I also had several people favorite or retweet my thought. That felt great! The chat was an hour and it flew by with so many great ideas. I honestly couldn't keep up and I need to look into that Tweetdeck that some of you mentioned. Question....I am always on Twitter on my phone, would it be helpful to switch to a laptop for these chats and to use Tweetdeck? I had so much fun I jumped into another chat right after it was over. I did finally settle with a new Twitter username, although I am not happy with it! @J4Hollingsworth.

    Also sorry for the late post again! I kept forgetting about the chats I wanted to join this week, and I wanted to try one before posting my comment. The evening would get going and it would slip my mind. I set a timer to not miss the one last night! :-)

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  69. It was really intriguing to read about EdCamps-- those were new to me and I'm definitely on the hunt for some in NW Indiana that would be beneficial.
    In terms of hashtags, I never thought about sharing the sources I find on twitter, but now that I think about it, I'm excited to go search some hashtags and see exactly what has been shared with different hash tags that apply to me.

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    1. Edcamp Fort Wayne won't be too far on July 23 (https://edcampfw.wordpress.com/) and Edcamp Michiana will be in Mishawaka September 12 (https://t.co/dSrRFpiz81)!

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  70. Hashtags are a way for people to follow all types of conversations on certain topics or that might interest certain groups of people. During a Twitter chat, the hashtag serves to keep everyone "in" the conversation. Sometimes people just use hashtags to make a joke or summarize the conversation, but a Tweet without a hashtag, especially when it's not directed at a specific person (or people) will easily get lost on Twitter!

    Without Tweetdeck, it's much harder to participate in a chat or follow a hashtag. Tweetdeck lets the user set up columns for specific users or hashtags, making them easy to check into any time or follow during a chat. I have MANY Tweetdeck columns, but my "go to" hashtags are #inelearn, #gafe, #elachat, #edtech, and #tlap. I love chats for #inelearn, #tlap, #tbookc, #gafechat, #bfc530, #satchat, #satchatwc, and #edbeat.

    Summer is a great time to get started on Twitter, because more people are experimenting! The summer of elearning conferences are happening, so you can follow the hashtag for the conference for the day or two it takes place to get the hang of things! Additionally, some chats move to "slowchats" for the summer (#bfc530, #read4fun), meaning you can respond to the day or week's question at any time convenient for you! Some chats are always set up to be slowchats, so you might check out #edslowchat (weekly) or #slowchated, #slowchatela, or #slowchatpe (new question each weekday) to get started!

    Edcamps are amazing experiences where the attendees choose the sessions together the morning of the conference. Educators suggest topics, then facilitate the conversations organically. If a session doesn't meet your expectations or help you, edcamp says you should move to a new session--it's not rude, it's expected! Edcamp Fort Wayne will be July 23 (https://edcampfw.wordpress.com/) and the summer of elearning brings us a Google edcamp opportunity July 9 (https://edcamp.wikispaces.com/edcamp+Google)!

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  71. I tend to use hashtags when tweeting about events for our FFA chapter. At times, we attend events that suggest hashtags (86th Indiana FFA Convention = #86INFFAConv). However, I also tend to make my own that other people may or may not be using.

    This week we are on a trip touring agribusinesses in Kentucky. I try to tweet pictures of the students each chance I get and use the hashtags #SAETour15 and #BluegrassTour. I doubt other people are using #SAETour15, but it gets the kids excited about this opportunity.

    I have never officially participated in a Twitter chat, but I do sometimes browse hashtags from previous chats. #agchat is used by many in the ag industry, and there is sometimes very useful information included in these chats.

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  72. I follow Scott Meech from Apple. Robert Marzano, Angela Maiers, Kevin Honeycutt, Jeff Goldstein, TED Ed, Edmodo, edutopia, ASCD, HASTI, Teachers.net, ISTE, McREL, Education Week, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Phil Plait, and others. Often I find more people and groups to follow by reading my favorites. I see that I just missed participating in an Edcamp in Fort Wayne, but I would like to propose having our faculty do an Edcamp and possibly organize one for our students this year. It is an intriguing concept - not unlike the sharathon sessions we have hosted at the HASTI conferences.

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  73. I really have zero experience with hashtags! And of course, I am hoping that changes soon! I have to admit...I love reading them!

    Since I am new to twitter I don't use them but I did know that they are a way to search for topics. I am planning on practicing this to improve my own professional development this summer.

    I am more familiar with the hashtags because of Instagram...I have used this in a very limited capacity in my class room this year and have plans to increase the use next school year. My students have LOVED the small bit with Instagram this year so I know it is a great way to pull kids in!

    I was at a conference this spring where a biology teacher told how he used hashtags on twitter when his students had to have a cell-war! Each group picked an organelle to run for president and they had to do a social media campaign. It was wildly successful and the students were actually interacting with real scientists. I hope to incorporate great ideas, such as this one, as I become more familiar with twitter.

    I also plan on attending two of the elearning summer sessions. The list of conferences looked great and I have had my eye on a couple of them all spring!

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  74. I attended the WISE Conference in Wabash a couple of weeks ago. It was there that I realized how neat hash tagging is. I sit in aw watching the Twitter feeds on the large screen. I plan on attending a couple more conferences this summer.

    Our school is not the greatest at offering PD. They have offered a couple here & there & that's it. However our tech department offers lots of opportunities that I take advantage of any chance I get. I am also looking into all the suggestions given by others so I can take advantage of everything I can.

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  75. Sorry if you saw this response on the first page, I am new to this and was replying in the wrong place! Hopefully, I will get it right! On June 17th I made 3 tweets! One about the importance of making comments rather than just a grade, another welcoming a teacher friend and finally congrats to a teacher for 8 great teacher ideas!

    On June 18th, I had just watched #INeLearn Chat concerning Rethinking Learning Enviroments and Spaces. They discussed the importance of having learning spaces for children to work alone and in groups. I felt it was interesting that they stated the spaces should be flowing like nature.

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  77. I loved this chapter. I had no idea that there were such opportunities like Edcamps and weekly conferences. I would definitely like to find one of those, possibly start one. I also will be using the app that allows you to go back and read the entire Twitter feed. I never realized all the opportunities Twitter offered, and I am getting more and more excited to expand my PLN to resources all over the world.

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  78. I am not new to Twitter, hashtags, or Twitter chats; however, I am not very comfortable with them :) I posted in a previous post that my goal was to become more comfortable with Twitter as a professional development tool, and I feel the same about hashtags, Twitter chats, and especially Edcamps. I didn't "get" hashtags and still struggle with how to utilize them myself, but I did find it extremely helpful in the second Key Connector to use hashtags for my TweetDeck as far as organizing the information I want to follow on Twitter. I have participated in a couple of chats but found the process a bit overwhelming, so I have followed several chats on my TweetDeck thanks to recommendations offered in the book and by other educators via their posts in order to become more comfortable with Twitter chats. I have even set up reminders on my phone because it's easy to forget the specific date and time of these chats with everything else going on during the day and evening. I am definitely intrigued by Edcamps and had never heard of them until I read this chapter. I would like to attend one in the near future, especially since they are free! As I continue to read the chapters in this book, I keep improving in the area of social media as an educator. The information is so helpful and beneficial. I think the only struggle I continue to have is finding a certain block of time during the day or evening to spend more time on Twitter and become more comfortable with the various features.

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    1. I am finally getting caught up on my reading & this blog & tweetdeck seems interesting. I am going to check into it to see if it helps me.

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  79. I have no experience with hashtags, chats, or Educamps so this section was extremely helpful to me. I am fascinated by the idea of an Educamp and I am going to follow the take 5 suggestion and check out the official Educamp wiki site. I am making one of my goals for this coming school year to be attendance at a Educamp. It sounds really interesting.

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  80. I have no experience with hashtags, chats, or Educamps so this section was extremely helpful to me. I am fascinated by the idea of an Educamp and I am going to follow the take 5 suggestion and check out the official Educamp wiki site. I am making one of my goals for this coming school year to be attendance at a Educamp. It sounds really interesting.

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  81. In terms of Twitter hashtags, I attempted to create one for my classroom but it didn't take off like I had hoped it would. The students, however, created one of the side that took off very well. Of course their's was more jokes and funny things about class rather than educational reminders like mine was. My goal for this upcoming school year is to find a balance between the 2 and have each class have their own hashtag rather than my classroom having a hashtag.

    Twitter chats are awesome! I talked about #tlap quite a bit in last week's post, but I have to praise it again because it was my first, committed chat. Of course, I began as a lurker, just watching different Twitter chats, especially ones that my Principal (@Principal_P) was connecting with. I have to thank him for pushing me that final little bit to participate rather than just follow along. I am so glad I did! I now can't even keep track of all my weekly Twitter chats! I'm starting to forget about some! Any organizational ideas for me?!

    Lastly, edcamps. ENSC did an in-service day EdCamp style which went pretty well. I created many sessions due to a colleague and my work over fall break regarding ENL Accommodations/Modifications, but I also got to walk around and check out others which was really neat. It sparked my interest in Standards Based Grading actually. I am also attending EdCampFW this month put on by Jason Bodnar (@EagleLeadLearnr), and I could not be more excited!! I think Edcamps are an awesome way to conduct PD and collaborate not only within your district, but also within your state/country.

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    1. This is one of my fears, Alison! The idea of kids creating side hashtags or just using their Twitter accounts to make fun of my beginning attempts with Twitter does scare me a little.

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  82. I like the idea of implementing a Twitter chat for my classroom. I'm an ELA teacher, and I think it could really spark some good conversation in a different way for students. It would be a great way to teach students to paraphrase, be concise, and how to use social media for more than entertainment purposes.

    On the professional side, I've really enjoyed the past few weeks following and getting to know fellow educators on Twitter. I'm looking into attending an EdCamp in Lafayette, but I'm not sure how beneficial it will be for someone whose school is not very technology centered in the classroom. Any thoughts?

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  83. I am new to Twitter and only understood that hashtags were related to posts people made it Twitter. Neither of my girls post on Twitter, but would discuss posts of kids they knew from school. I went to a conference last week and actually managed to find the Twitter area where speakers and attendees were posting comments and other interesting information. I learned a few things from presentations that I was not able to fit in. I am hoping to find a group of math teachers that I can follow and any teachers that are interested in flipped learning. I hope to find an Edcamp also. I feel better reading these posts and hearing that others are not as familiar with Twitter also. I worry about finding the time for learning about Twitter.

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  84. I am new to Twitter and only understood that hashtags were related to posts people made it Twitter. Neither of my girls post on Twitter, but would discuss posts of kids they knew from school. I went to a conference last week and actually managed to find the Twitter area where speakers and attendees were posting comments and other interesting information. I learned a few things from presentations that I was not able to fit in. I am hoping to find a group of math teachers that I can follow and any teachers that are interested in flipped learning. I hope to find an Edcamp also. I feel better reading these posts and hearing that others are not as familiar with Twitter also. I worry about finding the time for learning about Twitter.

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  85. Don't laugh, but the "Hashtag" song that Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Fallon sing came to mind when I started thinking of my earliest exposure to hashtags! I had started a Twitter account a few years ago at a summer professional development conference my corporation hosted. My attempts failed because we spent the time hurriedly creating our accounts and then tweeting to each other in the class. I could see no reason for me to use it. I needed the explanation this book provides; the why as well as the what. I have followed my daughter and some of her friends on Twitter. Although they don't use Twitter in the same way teachers would, it has provided lots of entertainment, and sometimes, honestly, some shock, to read their tweets. The hashtags they use are usually just added on for the cute factor. This chapter helped explain that hashtags should be used to take a person to a link to something. I have no experience with Twitter chats or EdCamps, but I'd be willing to try a Twitter chat sometime.

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  86. I enjoyed this chapter! I didn't understand the use of hashtags until reading this and thought they were "odd". Now I get their use :) I do not have any experience with Twitter chats or EdCamps; however, I think an EdCamp would be interesting to attend. I have now gone through and followed several educators, authors, etc. I'm starting to check Twitter more once doing this over vacation in early July. I probably look at Twitter a couple times a week.

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