Most of us would be familiar with social media as a platform for connecting with friends and family, but its value in the education world is gradually being realised.

The sharing nature of most social media avenues provides a great platform for the exchange of knowledge and ideas not only between teachers and students but also among students themselves.

So how can social media support learning in the classroom? We’ve put together a list of the ways you can utilise the true value of social media to create a quality learning environment.

1435642630_news  Student blogging

There is an age old saying…

The more you write, the better you get at it.

Blogging is a great way to get your students writing and help strengthen those creative muscles. There is a certain sense of achievement seeing your work published on the web and students will be more inclined to consider what they say more carefully and check their spelling, grammar and punctuation knowing that their peers and teacher will be reading.

You could have students reflect on a previous lesson or a particular video you may have shown to the class. Once completed, they can share blog pieces for peer evaluation which can lead to thought-provoking discussions and debates about a particular focus area.

Visit our Love Learning blog for more ideas.

1435642737_Facebook  Create a Facebook group

The world’s largest social media platform, Facebook, is not just for catching up with friends. You can use the platform to create a class group.

Use this group to keep parents up to date with important events such as parent teacher interviews and excursions. Keep older students up to date with assessment tasks that might be due in the near future or to provide details on how to prepare for tomorrow’s lessons.

1435642785_Twitter  Say it with a #hashtag

Twitter revolves around the use of hashtags. Hashtags are a great way to keep up with all the latest information and discussion regarding a particular topic – a great way to learn about what is happening in the world. For example, your students can aggregate all the content available on Twitter about a natural disaster by using a specific hashtag.

You can even browse hashtags on Twitter without having an account!

To take it one step further you could create a dedicated class hashtag that you and your students can use to discuss topics.

1435642842_YouTube  Make videos

YouTube isn’t just for watching videos of cats. Make the most of this great resource by having your students create a podcast, host a show or present a news report.

For example, students could create a video discussing the results of a science experiment or a review of a recent excursion.

1435642878_ic_vpn_key_48px  A note on privacy

There are numerous privacy issues related to social media so please make sure you abide by your school’s social media policy (this might mean you cannot use social media at all), the privacy policy of the social media platforms you will use and keep any class-related social feeds set to private.

Before creating any accounts for students, seek permission from parents and your supervisors. Lastly, use your best judgement.