The following blog provides 2 case studies and some brief examples of schools using Social Media in some capacity, across the 6 areas of Social Media use i.e. Communication, Student Engagement, Organisational Branding, Personal Branding, Professional Growth, and Public Relations.
There are very few schools that have embraced Social Media in a comprehensive way. There are many examples of teachers using social media to improve student outcomes, but these activities are not part of an overall school strategy for social media use. This blog finishes by providing a link that shows more than 100 ways that social media can be used in the classroom to improve student and school outcomes.
Figure 1.0 – Categories of Social Media Use.
CASE STUDY 1 – New Milford High The Principal of this school strongly believes that “effective communication, listening, support, shared decision-making, and the integration of technology are essential elements necessary for the transformation of school cultures”. This Principal is the only Principal that I could find showing innovative leadership in use of social media and web 2.0 technology as tools. He primarily uses Social Media to engage students, improve communication with the school community, and to facilitate teacher professional growth. The Principal of this School is also acutely aware of the use of social media in Organisational Branding. “Like the Golden Arches, when people hear of New Milford they think innovation”.
CASE STUDY 2 – Lincoln Junior High School
This article highlights how student engagement at this school has increased, by using social media. This school introduced innovation day. The student work produced in innovation day was highlighted in the organisers blog. It was subsequently then picked up and published by the New York Times thus creating a positive public image for the school. From a professional development perspective the organiser of innovation day makes the following statement. “Educators must embrace technology to be more effective, Stumpenhorst said. He connected students in his social studies class with a class in Philadelphia via Skype. Using contacts he’s made over social media, he envisions making those same kind of connections with classes in China, Romania and South Africa. Stumpenhorst said the connections he’s made with other educators on Facebook, Twitter and his blog have made him a better teacher”.
EXAMPLE 1 – (@CCahillMN), a librarian at Orono Middle School, uses Twitter in the classroom to help students research and engage with specific subject matter. “Students compete to find resources, and be the first to post to Twitter. It’s like a kind of scavenger hunt, and it teaches students research skills”.
EXAMPLE 2 – Stanford University provides public access to projects developed by faculty and students on its Facebook page. “Students looking for inspiration for projects can see videos, pictures and other previously done projects”.
If you are looking for further ideas for social media in your classroom try the following link that contains more than 100 ideas.
Please feel free to add other comments about other schools that you have heard of that are using social media in their school in a comprehensive way.