The rise of social media has made it easy for people to connect with each other and has become a prevalent part of American life. According to a study conducted by Pew Research, over three-quarters of Americans use some form of online social media, and the numbers are even higher among teens and young adults.
For many educators, social media is a great way to connect with their students and colleagues. It can also help them develop a stronger network of contacts and provide a platform for their classes. However, for personal use, many teachers are drawn to it due to the fact that it allows them to connect with their friends and family members. Today, we’re going to be discussing how you can use social media proactively in your classroom.
Follow your local laws
Before you start using social media, make sure that you thoroughly understand the policies of your school or district. For instance, while it’s not allowed for students to access social media in school, it’s still okay to establish a classroom account that students can post on.
Get the permission of your administrator
It’s important that you talk to your school’s administration about your plans and ideas. They’ll be able to help you avoid potential problems and ensure that the project goes smoothly. Also, ask them to help you if a student makes a mistake or if a parent raises concerns.
Communicate with parents
Make sure that the parents understand why you’re using social media and how it can benefit your students. Also, encourage them to participate in the project in a variety of ways. For example, they could bring up some meaningful conversations at home. If all else fails, create some alternatives for students with reluctant parents.
Establish (and hold) firm classroom boundaries
To develop classroom norms about social media, use the same approach that you would with face-to-face communication. Ask students to explore and discuss the various aspects of social media and its effects.
Protect your students’ privacy
You should never post student names, photos, or personal information without their permission. Your school can also provide you with permission slips that can be obtained from the students.
Be a role model
Be a positive role model and educate yourself about the various aspects of social media. Having a professional account and maintaining professional boundaries are also important. All communication should be done through the school’s official channels, such as email and the Learning Management System.