Being intentional about my social media use has been a nice little side project for me throughout this semester. In general I have no problems wasting away the hours on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter but I have had problems (or lack of motivation?) in the past to be truly active in those wasted hours (being more active would in turn make them less of a waste!) So the push to be a meaningful participant online has been a nice gear shift for me.
What is a #COETAIL?
I remember seeing the COETAIL hashtag (I’m going to quit being particular with the case sensitivity of CoETaIL – it’s too hard) and being drawn to the content as well as the community. It was clearly a group of educators who were keen to embark on a learning journey and share their successes. I think it must be close to two years ago that I had a long twitter chat with @chezvivian and she convinced me to join an online cohort. The COETAIL community was the first reason I signed up for this course so reflecting on the impact and my participation with the COETAIL community is a nice way to start to close out Course 5 for me.
I see COETAILers being most active in the Twitter and WordPress worlds although many might argue that there is an equal (or at least growing) presence in G+. I tried so hard to fall in love with Google Plus. I tried to get my students to fall in love with it. I’ve tried to get our school to be more active with it. Why isn’t it working for me? I’m Google obsessed. I chucked out the iPhone and got a Nexus (just to clarify chucked out = dropped in the toilet) and I’m a massive Google Apps junkie and a self-confessed snob about people who keep sending me bloody Microsoft Word docs! So, why didn’t Google Plus connect with me? I honestly only open up Google+ to check up on the two COETAIL communities that I’m in. Maybe that’s enough? I do wonder if I’ll keep it up once Course 5 is done.
Twitter has definitely been my biggest centre for my online presence. My connections have grown steadily throughout this first half of the year and I’m finding it easier to engage/chat/connect with people – instead of simply lurking. Joining chats and making better use of hashtags has resulted in more follows and a higher Klout rating but none of this matters if you are simply collecting numbers. Setting aside time for #mathchat, #coetailchat and #sbgchat has (and will always be) been more engaging than follower counting. (But, you should still follow me, the link is on the right) I love the new slow chat movement more than anything as the time differences can often mean that I’m trying to be insightful at 6am or midnight which rarely happens!
The last COETAIL slow chat we started to think about life after COETAIL. I don’t want to get too ahead of myself as I still need to finish the project but I hope to do Kim Cofino’s coaching course in August. That will keep me in the COETAIL learning space and hopefully keep this blog going and my Twitter tweeting.
See you on the Twitter machine.
Twitter: The only place where you get excited when a stranger follows you…
— Not Will Ferrell (@itsWillyFerrell) August 12, 2012
In terms of collating my community engagement throughout this course I thought I’d put together a storify to walk you through my online learning and contributions.
(Here’s a direct link to the storify – way easier if you are on a mobile device)