Social Media Experiment: Day 3 – Connections!

The tweet from @boadams1 while at the ropes course with our young learners connected to my learning and work in every hour of today.

When we don’t pull TOGETHER as a team, we can get stuck. In sync, we can move forward.

THE most powerful learning for me today was the connections between Dr. Sousa’s research on the 20 minute learning episode (primacy-recency), formative assessment, and social media.  In the JH History PLT today, we paused the discussion about essential learnings for students studying the Civil War.  I asked these adult learners to summarize what they were learning.  @JenLalley called on one of the adult learners.  His reply was honest and direct.  “I’m not learning anything; I don’t teach this course.  I’m not actually paying attention.” 

I was THRILLED with his honesty, candor, trust, and assessment.  Isn’t it better to know  at the 20 minute mark than to get to the end of the class period and realize (or not) that a learner was left out?  @JenLalley used her solid facilitator skills to deflect attention from this adult learner to others to summarize our learning.  We tweeted.  Then the magic happened.  The team began to connect the essential learning work of the Civil War to essential learning work for World Cultures.  It engaged this left-out learner.  He enthusiastically participated in the work and conversation after the 25 minute mark.  His contribution was valuable.

Formative assessment at 20 minutes, at any time, informs all learners.  It allows us to make on-the-fly adjustments to accomodate and include all learners.  Notice that the team made the adjustment; the learners adjusted to have inclusion.  It was an unspoken community decision.  Powerful!

Today, day 3, we had 13 faculty members and 4 students directly tweeting at the 20 minute mark.  The tweets using #20minwms has an 11 hour span today.  Eleven hours of tweets on learning from our learners.  Eleven hours! 

Of course you can follow this work on Twitter, but again here are examples. This list is longer than normal because we can start to see connections between classes.  Connections made by teachers and by students.  I think it is so great and very interesting to see the summary of learning posted by the teacher and the student.  (Note:  I always use learner rather student but in this case, we are all learners.  I am using teacher and student to differentiate the age of the learners.)

Isn’t this great?  One of my young learners said in class today that Coach Jones was teaching them about spreadsheets in science today too.  Connection!  You can read my tweet above and @aatmuri1’s tweet.  @aatmuri1 does not sit with me to learn algebra but has Coach Jones.  This confirmed that my learners were accurate in their assessment of what they were learning and the connection between two of their classes.  Progress!

Look at the tweets from @epdobbs and @runningwitty about songs and poetry.  See @aatmuri1’s tweet today connected to @senor206’s tweets yesterday about reading in Spanish.  Nice!  @kplomgren, @TaraWestminster, and @boadams1 all gave perspectives about learning from the ropes course.  Our students, our young learners, can see our learning too.  Read @JenLalley and @jgough’s tweets about the History PLC. 

@abaconmoore is using formative assessment and self-assessment and is reporting results of learning.  @occam98 is on leave this week and is still participating.  This is his second day of tweeting with our virtual colleagues about our learning, formative assessment, and social media. 

@sgough asked today if his learners could directly tweet.  Could they tweet with him so that multiple voices and perpectives could be recorded?  Wow!  Yes, yes, yes!

The most powerful tweet, for me, of the day comes from @boadams1 while at the ropes course with our young learners.  If you didn’t know he was at the ropes course, you could assume that he was with us in the History PLT.  If you didn’t know he was at the ropes course, you could assume that he was with us in the Algebra I.  If you didn’t know he was at the ropes course, you could assume that he was with us in English. We are pulling together. 

When we don’t pull TOGETHER as a team, we can get stuck. In sync, we can move forward.


  1. Love that the History PLC member was honest in his reply. When trust permeates and binds a team, deep learning can happen. Without such trust, we may only scratch a surface. Great post!


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