Teaching with social media: Communities of practice in a digital world

Steven W. Anderson | February 10, 2022 in Higher Education

pearson online, interacting with others in a virtual meeting

This blog series highlights educators who have embraced social media in their ongoing quest to meet students where they are, increase engagement, and improve results. Through these stories, you’ll discover how they got started, learn a few tips to make your foray into social media as seamless as possible, and hear some advice about incorporating these new technologies and platforms into your instruction or institution.

Learning is a social activity — it very rarely happens in isolation. We live in a digital world where we have access to some of the smartest, most brilliant minds anywhere, almost at the click of a mouse or the tap of a keyboard, so being able to plug in to these networks in whatever form that is most meaningful to the user is important.

Importance of teacher communities

I’m a proponent of Twitter, but there are some educators who look at it and say “I could never be involved in something like that for one reason or another.” They find it overwhelming, or they can’t find what they need.

The key is to get hooked into a community, because “alone we’re smart, but together we’re brilliant.”

So when we work together, and share and reflect and grow together as professionals, the impact on our students can be tremendous. And it doesn’t really matter what platform you choose, the key is to become connected to one another.

That then again shows students that learning is a very social activity. But it also shows them that these platforms can help build skills like digital citizenship and digital literacy, which are increasingly more important in understanding where our information comes from.