Twitter is a very useful way to express your thoughts, connect with the education community (either locally or around the world) and to keep up with news and developments across the education sector.
The main thing to remember with your Twitter account is that you decide how to use it. You decide what to post and who to follow so that your followers have a clear idea of your educational profile and so that you can stay informed and socialise with education accounts that suit your interests.
You can join Twitter by signing up online or by downloading the app on your mobile or tablet device. You will be prompted to enter your full name, email or phone number to verify your account, date of birth and password. Remember to choose a strong password that is eight characters or more.
Upload a profile picture
Once you have signed up, you will be asked to choose a profile picture. Choose a good quality and up-to-date picture of yourself which represents you in a professional, friendly manner. Make it simple and easily identifiable.
Write a bio
Next, begin writing your bio. It is important that you write your bio wisely so that you can get users’ attention and so they can easily identify you. You have 160 characters to describe yourself to others. Provide information such as your school, what type of teacher you are, your school’s aims, hashtags relating to your education background and useful links e.g. other social media accounts. Avoid writing information that is offensive or overly personal. Remember to remain professional and communicate as you would when teaching.
Create a username/@ name
Your username is how people will be able to search for you or mention you in tweets. Your @ name should be between 4 to 15 characters. As there are so many users on Twitter, make sure your name is personal and includes underscores and numbers if your name is already taken. You will also have a display name which is up to 50 characters and can be any name you choose.
Find people to follow
Finally, start following the accounts you want to keep up with. You can follow the accounts of those you know e.g. friends, students and colleagues so that they know you’re a new Twitter user. You can also follow accounts aligned to your interests. As a teacher, you’ll be wanting to follow educational accounts, so start by typing in words such as ‘education’ or ‘teaching’ into the search bar. You will be given a list of useful accounts to follow or tweets and media sources relating to your search. Remember that accounts that are verified (blue tick) will be genuine accounts from organisations and famous people.