We're living in unprecedented times. For the first time ever in history, everyone owns their own media channel and the ability to spread a message (click to tweet).
Students growing up today will no longer need a lot of money to have the clout of mass media names like BBC, FOX, or CNN. They just need to know how to tweet, market a Facebook page, and write a meaningful blog post.
Great schools act as nurturing centers that foster creative development and high-quality art, math, and science skills; and school is the medium to advance human development and better society. The internet took our society into hyper speed and successful schools will quickly follow.
Do keep in mind that we don't condone forcing students to tweet, but, rather, that teaching students to do so (perhaps in a safe LMS) has tremendous long-term benefits for 21st century skills.
What can students do with a Tweet, Pin, and Like?
Feel free to share this formula with your son, daughter, or a student you know:
Step 1: Start a blog that helps solve a problem, highlight an area of concern, or is wildly entertaining. Check out Jaden's Awesome Blog For a sixth grader, Jaden does a great job sharing his insights into football, wrestling, and other popular online middle school topics. Come time for online high school, Jaden may choose to switch to politics or his destined career.
Step 2: Create a Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook page. Include a link to the main blog to direct readers to it. Below are the benefits of each social media platform.
Twitter: Craft 3-5 daily tweets that stay on the positive and entertain or educate your readers. Always keep your ideal audience in mind.
Pinterest: Pictures, yeah! Upload beautiful photos that appeal to your audience. For Jaden, he'll want to post great photos of wrestlers or football
Facebook: Facebook is great to start off if you don't want to create a blog. Do keep in mind, however, that Facebook has the ability to use your photos as advertisements and anyone can see your page (even if it's set to private). That's why we suggest using a self-hosted domain or a secure LMS like the one we use.>
Post questions like Socrates would ask and encourage comments. Offer small prizes for incentive.
Step 3: Keep it up. It takes time to develop the benefits from having an online presence. However, through time, students will be one step ahead by having a solid Google presence. When it comes time to apply for a job or entrepreneurship, students will have some stellar media experience on their resume.
So, go ahead and get started. Enjoy the likes, the retweets, and the re-pins. You have nothing to lose besides moving forward.