Now class, if you will take out your cell phones for this next assignment ….. *updated*

2 Mar

Before we do anything. Lets take a minute to listen to what John McWhorter has to say about texting …

Now after watching this lets get into using a cell phone in the classroom and how you can use it now knowing what texting is not as something that the kids do and use cute unrecognizable terminology but as a new form of communicate/language.

Two things you never want you students doing while they are in your class

  1. On their cell phones 
  2. Using social media while you are teaching a subject 

Doing one or the other in class would be a sure way to get your cell phone taken up but with social media all around us and almost everyone having a facebook or twitter page, or at least knowing what one is, incorporating social media into the classroom seems like a no-brainier. Fortunately for students using modern day technology is beginning to  emerge from taboo to it becoming a required, needed resource implicated in classrooms. Teachers from all over the world are finding new an innovative ways to use new technology in their classroom. There are two websites that I will use in my classrooms



Using either of these applications may be something that sounds foreign to you but if you think like an educator then you can find many uses for both social media pages.

Facebook is great for students because rather than spending money on a webpage domain name you can just create a Facebook page for your students where you can post daily assignments for students who have missed class, lost their homework or had it eaten by the dog. You can create discussion that students need to respond to. Eventually students will begin to organically start their own discussion on the Facebook page and asking questions about assignments, setting up study groups, what they need for a group presentation. This is something that every educator wishes would happen between their students but always fall short on implicating it. The picture below shows some stats about facebook and why it seems like a no brainier to start using Facebook in your classroom. My idea is if students are already using something then find a way to make it work in your educational curriculum

Twitter  is another one of those apps that seems that everyone is using now a days. You see #hashtags every time you turn on the time, you see a little blue bird every time you walk into a store. Twitter is the number one app that is the closes a company can get to interacting with their customers. If businesses are using this and have recognized this then why hasn’t the education field? There are a few ways that teachers can use twitter in their classroom to help their students; creating IBP projects where you can have your students follow business leaders, scientist, businesses, anything and they can ask those people who are leaders in the field is they can answer a question that they have. This shows the student who thinks having an education is “stupid” that they can follow their favorite celebraty and ask them questions related to education and how they got to where they are now if it was not for school. The best practice you can do, in my opinion is having a #hashtag that is specific to your classroom, let’s say #MrGs930EnglishClass you can have certain hashtags for every period that you teach, oh and they are FREE! you can encourage your students to have their cell phones out and on your overhead have twitter open and you can have students ask questions if they are confused with something. This encourages decision and gives a voice to students that would typically not ask a question because they are afraid of speaking in a class, because they sound “stupid”*. The joy of learning something new is being able to show it to not just your peers but also to people all over the world. With having a designated Hashtag for your students they can tell their parents, grandparents, friends, whoever that they can go and look up #MrGs930EnglishClass and see what they are working on, this is a good way to get your parents excited about the fact that their child would be using Twitter in the classroom. Below is a visual graph that shows some stats about Twitter

*students words not mine.

I have also created a google document that has useful links that I think are very beneficial if you plan on using either Facebook or Twitter in your classroom.


4 Responses to “Now class, if you will take out your cell phones for this next assignment ….. *updated*”

  1. Terry Garza March 3, 2013 at 11:25 pm #

    Wow! That was AWESOME! I think this was the best blog I have read yet! Every week it gets better and has more information for me to bank for my classroom! I enjoyed how you explained the use of Facebook and Twitter for classroom purposes, I also think this could prove to be beneficial for the teacher and students..even parents for that matter. No excuses it! I also enjoyed how you explained the benefits of using it for projects. The times are changing and it is important the we as teachers keep up with it, especially in the classroom. I think if we can bring all of these things into a classroom our students may never wanna leave! Great Post…can not wait to read next week’s!

  2. Monique March 6, 2013 at 2:51 am #

    I second that “WOW”!!! there is so much information in this blog that I think educators can use! I really appreciate the statistics! If teachers are aware of the amount of time students spend on the internet and the types of social networking they are engaged in, they may be able to incorporate this into their daily lesson plans.

  3. Joey Talley March 6, 2013 at 10:03 pm #

    This was an incredible post. There are many things in here I have never considered before. I have always said teachers need to embrace new technologies in the classroom, and this post shows many great reasons for doing so. I love the idea of using twitter in the classroom to ask questions. I have always been somewhat of a shy student, and having this method to ask questions would have saved me much grief if I had access to it. The stats listed about Facebook were also amazing, I had never seen that information before.

  4. Alex May 7, 2013 at 2:14 am #

    Those facebook statistics were pretty interesting to see! I’ve never seen anything like that before, but it’s not surprising that there’s someone out there that actually has a job to figure things out like that!

    Something you pointed out in the beginning that many teachers don’t realize is that they will get their students to interact in the classroom more likely when they are doing something they want to do. A great way of getting that done is to base the lesson around them. Isn’t that something we’re supposed to be doing anyway! Student-based learning. So letting students use technology and cell phones and facebook and twitter and all that will definitely get them to do their work because they’re going to be on there anyway! Realizing things like this now shows that you’re going to be a wonderful teacher 🙂

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