My first Twitter chat: #edchat or #edechochamber?

Last Tuesday, I participated in my first Twitter chat—namely, an #edchat. We had a couple of topics:

For the question about “connected educators,” the responses tended to focus on professional development and expanding one’s horizons.

…But there was a bit of joking around, of course!

The participants sang the praises of being “connected” with other educators over social media:

In particular, they extolled the value of their “Personal Learning Networks” (PLNs):

But they acknowledged that these connections don’t always come easily:

And here was some of the advice for selling other teachers on the idea of networking and connecting over social media:

All in all, I’m still not quite sold on Twitter chats. Maybe #edchat was just too general a group for me. The discussion topic also struck me as an exercise in naval-gazing and self-congratulation: “Why are we all so awesome? How can we convince other teachers how awesome we are and get them to approach personal development and networking the same way we do?”

And maybe they’re right—maybe they are all awesome and do have the best methods for making meaningful, productive professional connections with colleagues. But instead of seeing that awesomeness in action, I really only saw an echo chamber full of meta-talk—a bunch of the converted preaching to the other converted.

I still have at least four more chats to participate in. Hopefully #edtechchat and #ellchat will be more practical and productive!

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