Last Friday, after finishing my classes for this school year, I was absolutely fried, with achy shoulders, neck, and throbbing mouse-wrist, all the result of having been on my computer non-stop for one practically sleep-free week. I was about to close up shop and head out to my garden for some quiet, green, life-affirming tech-free time, but first tweeted something, I have to admit, without much thought. Just kind of putting a punctuation mark to the week, on-my-way-out-the-door type of thing.
Here's the tweet, and as of today, here's what's happened with it:
Teaching year #26 just about done. My learning/changes during 24 - 26 far surpassed sum total of 1-23. Why? Twitter. Right here. #EduAwesome
— Audrey McLaren McG (@a_mcsquared) June 7, 2013
26 retweets and 9 favourites. That might not seem like a lot to some of you, but it's huge to me, not to mention life-affirming. Not just because I went from feeling pretty dead to pretty happy, not just because of the amazing conversations and ideas I've had since then, and not just because I got to add all kinds of great people to my PLN, but also because it illustrates the nature of twitter that's so hard to explain to people who aren't on twitter.
If a living organism were a conversation, it would look like twitter. Utterly unpredictable, instinctive, multi-faceted, energy-consuming AND generating, changing direction instantaneously, constantly mixing and remixing, growing or dying depending on infinitely many factors....but ultimately striving to become better and stronger, on the way to becoming part of a much bigger, richer tapestry. Except on twitter, instead of genes being exchanged, it's ideas.
And why would anyone choose NOT to participate in that? You can either stay alone on your own little rock, surviving on what's always worked in the past, or you can jump into the idea pool and thrive. Everybody wins, and everybody's got something to share, but the thing is, you may be the last person to know it until you go for it.
And that 140 character thing that seems so limiting? Yeah, well, genes only get to use 4 (ATGC), and look where that got us!
I love swimming in the idea pool with you! Great post, I only have half your time and experience but feel the same impact of belonging to and EduAwesome PLNReplyDelete
Thanks so much Sam! Your energy, humour, and overall brilliance have a huge impact on everyone in your PLN, including me. But I think the thing I appreciate the most about you is that you treat everyone the same, regardless of subject, tech ability, or age. To add one more swimming metaphor, people like you keep my head above water :)Delete
I had a similar experience this week...I was totally fried, and Twitter and my fabulous PLN totally energized me...and it only took 20 minutes of random chatting.ReplyDelete
I 100% agree with you and love I have so many people that I consider friends, even though we've never "met".
So glad to hear you got a pick-me-up too! It's just amazing, isn't it? We can be friends with people just based on feelings and ideas, nothing to do with how we look or how much we make. Thank goodness. Thanks, Delia, I'm so glad to be in your PLN, and one of these days we'll all have to actually meet and have an old-fashioned, what did they used to call them...PARTAY!!!Delete
Twitter is indeed a funny place, and 26 is indeed huge. Makes me wonder if there was a tipping point in there, where after 4 RTs they came in a rush, or if it was a more constant flow... but then, I'm into statistics. :PReplyDelete
I'll add that Twitter experience is even valuable if you're on the sidelines, at the wading pool, something I was musing about myself only yesterday. No need to necessarily dive into the deep end. I think it does have to be something you're ready for. At any rate, congrats on getting through and may the good feelings continue over the next months!
Extremely insightful thoughts as usual, from you Greg! I suspect one tipping point was when someone with a gazillion followers re-tweeted . But there probably is an exponential-ness to it as well. You know, someone should come up with an app for that....Delete
Excellent point, also, that you can benefit just by watching, as opposed to tweeting. That's what I did for at least the first 6 months I was on twitter, definitely only dipping my toes in at first. We all have to start at our comfort level, but we can still learn a lot while we're there.
And as for being ready, that's part of the weirdness for me. What I think is a casual off-the-cuff comment turns out to resonate for 26 people (actually it's more now - including your RT which thank you btw!) so if I had waited until I thought that tweet was ready, it probably wouldn't have happened. On twitter, ready is all relative.
Thanks for your thoughtful comment, as always!
Greg part 2: Part of my reply didn't get through....the someone with a gazillion followers was Dan Meyer. I typed his name between the greater than/less than symbols, and I guess blogger didn't like that. Oh well. But there's the secret I think!Delete