Thursday, 8 April 2010

Professional development and personal help from Twitter

Today more than any other day made me realise just how useful Twitter is as a way of connecting with other teachers round the world, but also as a way to stay informed and up to date about happenings around the world.

On the professional side, it enabled me to stay in touch with the big IATEFL conference taking place this week in Harrogate. I couldn't go for a variety of reasons but following the events online, particularly via Twitter from some of the more tweet-happy delegates really helped me get a sense of what a lot of the sessions were about. I was pretty busy today doing the shopping, taking my son to the park and some other little tasks, but I was constantly able to check my phone to read a little of what was going on there. Big thanks to the likes of Shaun Wilden, Gavin Dudeney et al who provided excellent summaries and commentaries on the sessions.

At the same time me and my wife were anxious to find out about the situation in Kyrgyzstan where there is a coup underway and tremendous civil unrest. My wife is from there, I lived there myself for four years and we were obviously concerned about what was going on there, particularly for the sake of my wife's family.

Again, despite a busy day we were able to keep up with the events there and through a mixture of SMSes and Twitter feeds we were able to establish the well-being of her family and also receive up to the minute info about what's going on there.

The term 'social networking' has always been a bit of a misnomer when it comes to Twitter. For me it's a way to stay connected, involved and informed about things that matter in my personal and professional life and to be able to do that from anywhere.

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