what prompted you to join twitter?

By Meredith Johnson – @mjjohnson1216

June 18, 2020

What prompted you to join Twitter? This was a question I tweeted out on May 23, 2020 and again the next day. I found the question received 81,084 impressions and 2,170 engagements. Quite impressive! I posted this as I hoped to share, with educators all over the world, how many different reasons there are to join Twitter. In the book, Evolving Learner (Rowell, Andre, Steinmann, 2020) they share, “If you are an adult who has … avoided social media for another reason, we encourage you to hear us out and take another look. Social media, when used thoughtfully and well, could be the most powerful source of professional learning that you have ever found.” Keep their quote in mind as you read through the responses that follow. What I adore about all of them is they are so different! 178 unique individuals responded to this question – some of them showing their marvelous creativity!

Depth and accessibility of the professional development opportunities.


You have voice outside this building,

Becoming a connected educator has been a total game changer!

Learning that takes place

Build a broader PLN and learn from educators who I’ve seen at conferences or read books by.

Keynote speaker that recommended using @Twitter to learn.

Principal, @BrianMoore55 was a huge inspiration

A desire to be able to reach my students for this account.

School. I manage my school’s twitter feed. That and going to conferences.

Grow as an educator, get on #Twitter. He was right! My #pln has grown substantially. I also try to advocate, inspire, & empower others. I love connecting w/edus who have the same #positiveenergy & love for our profession positive energy

Twitter shamed by an AP in my former district

Good intentions turned into the best ongoing PD received and a fantastic PLN group!

My goal was to expand my PLC by interacting/engaging with teachers beyond just those in my district. In all honesty, being a part of #TeacherTwitter has taken my career to a whole other level. I love my #TeacherTwitterComm!

I was honestly just being a follower at the time listening to all the Twitter buzz.

Hesitant at first, but joined for the team and never looked back! Found educators who stretch my thinking and inspire me! So glad I found my tribe!

I learned about Twitter when I attended @iste several years ago. #edutwitter and the #educhat platform have served as an invaluable resource to @grow my craft.

Professional and personal development. I can interact with professionals from around the world

More professional, reaching higher profiles, more expertise shared, more opportunities created.

It was required for our school PD. Never thought it would be this #awesome

I fought it as just another SM but joined and saw the PLN of it all and I am so glad I did.

To increase my professional connections and further my learning. I love my Twitter peeps.

About 10 years ago I went to a conference session on blogs, wikis, and Twitter as educator tools. I did all 3 for a while but Twitter is what stuck!

It took me about a year to give in, way back when I started, but it was when I realized I could follow most of what was happening at a conference I couldn’t attend in person that I got it enough to give it a chance

I needed more support for my kinders. Not just DonorsChoose, but the brilliant minds I have connected to here. I have gotten emotional support to try new things and rethink old supplies for new used.

PD by @JillBromen

It was the Thomas Fire out here in SoCal. I wasn’t getting good or timely info on school closings etc. There were a couple people that stepped up and did what the media wasn’t doing. Having that connection thru Twitter was huge. I have met so many educators thru this also

For me, it was b/c Alan November @globalearner told us it was a MUST at my first @NLearning

#BLC conference back in 2010. So obviously I followed his advice & got signed up then & there. Next step was attending @lthumann ‘s session on 25 #edtech leaders to follow to get me going!

A place to follow my students and to contact them teacher twitter has helped me more than I’ve ever thought it could!!

I was doing research for my first book and I was told I could reach a lot of people. I didn’t know how to use it. I did sign up and then it lay dormant forever a long-time

@globalearner visited my school and I was inspired to try again.

Believe it or not that was 5 years ago and only due to this pandemic have I become so involved here. This educational Twitter family is my go-to for all thing’s education, motivation, inspiration & support

VSTE and ISTE there usually is a hashtag to follow and I keep up with those I know. There are sometimes gatherings to eat or whatever that get coordinated and contests. I also like to tweet out what I learn at sessions and tag teachers I know might be interested

I think someone mentioned it in 2007 and I was bored. For this account I discovered edu Twitter in 2013 at a conference.

It was April 2009 and I was looking for innovative ways to connect with students and share lessons.

Post it with my syllabus for my university courses – but not my middle school classes. That said, my student audiences are not on twitter much anyhow. It seems much better teacher-to-teacher and professional-to-professional.

Years ago, a colleague encouraged me to try Twitter and as the saying goes, “I never looked back!”

I joined as part of an assignment in grad school to connect with #edtech professionals and build a professional learning network

I was fairly new to social media still and made an account. Later, I had a grad school assignment and this is the growth since then. I follow a few hobby related threads but its education related for the most part.

An assignment in grad school to connect with #edtech professionals and build a professional learning network

I have been an educator for 30 years and Twitter had helped me learn about new digital tools, curriculums, resources, books, and conferences about education. I have learned about Educational Leadership, new learning platforms, new technology features

Twitter chats

This is kind of sad, but I used to teach at a small #school where I always felt like a nobody. Then I started connecting to people on Twitter, and they liked my ideas and they listened to what I had to say. For the first time in years, I felt as though I mattered

Have gotten great advice and feedback and made amazing connections. I am the only one of my kind at school. I teach a tech maker STEM class, so I dont have that team. Twitter is my team.

I started to collaborate with educators all over the world and use Twitter to improve my teaching.

@JillBromen launched the use of IPAD s for all ELL teachers in my district.

@gcouros gave an aMAZing presentation about the positive impacts of Twitter, it has truly made a difference in my educational career.

I used to avoid it. The name just set me on edge. Until I discovered the networking & building a PLN as an educator. I so value the connections.

I joined when I started at a new district. It was the best thing ever!

Networking. Twitter is great for connecting!

I initially joined after a district initiative to use a Twitter as a platform to share practices and current reality with colleagues and parents.

to Merce @Ms_Sampson23 who convinced me join this platform. I have met an awesome networking team of educators, access to relevant PD sessions and chats that keep me abreast of new tech. trends and changes in education.

When I was in college it was required for some of my education classes. Second time was a push from admin in my school for networking opportunities.

To learn and grow from other educators.

Wanted to connect with educators sharing new and exciting ideas

I attended an Ed Tech Summit and learned about all the possibilities. One of the best decisions I ever made. I have learned so much and gained some great relationships.

I joined because of an online conference called Reform Symposium.

The interactivity for sure!

Learning and connecting to other learners

I started a personal account back when Twitter was new because I wanted to talk to John Mayer. Then I bumped into edu chats & made this profile

I joined in 2011… no idea why. But didn’t start to really use it till 2015 when I discovered Twitter chats for educators. A world opened up for me. I still remember the excitement of that moment!

I was hired as an edtech coach. I had heard that teachers were on Twitter so I thought it may be a good way to learn some things.

Initially, to join a chat about the #Oscars but learned yrs later the power to learn, connect and share.

Primarily to grow my #PLN but also to maybe perhaps make some friends… the former has been a work in progress, the latter – not so much… Oh and… Eid Mubarak

I wanted to get better as an educator…What better way to learn then by being connected to giant edu community…Still learning, growing, and connecting

@gcouros came to our district and trained us on Twitter and did a Twitter-vention as @alicekeeler would say create a handle use a hashtag how to follow people or other educators ”imagine if every teacher at your school tweeted one positive thing per day”

I wanted to get better as an educator…What better way to learn then by being connected to giant edu community…Still learning, growing, and connecting

It’s what all the cool, connected educators were doing. I’m so happy I tried it out!

IDOE book study

When I was superintendent, I told my faculty to join Twitter…revolt! So, I never mentioned again. A few joined…

It was April 2009 and I was looking for innovative ways to connect with students and share lessons.

I just wanted to learn from different perspectives, cultures, subjects….

About 13 years ago my friend in IT said, this thing is gonna be a big deal. I haven’t consistently used it but I’ve had one since then. Most recently my move to edtech prompted my increased engagement

To keep up with what is happening in the world

Curiosity. Twitter had only been around a few years. My daughters and I were looking at it and Second Life.

My friend, @doriedance

Wanted to connect with educators sharing new and exciting ideas

The opportunity to connect with likeminded people and to increase my professional learning network.

Book study at school

To connect with other passionate educators!

Teaching, Learning, connecting with others that stretched way beyond my zip code to start …

I joined after attending an online conference Roscon? That was orchestrated by @ShellTerrell … it was my first experience with online conferences after my master’s degree!

For me… opportunity to collaborate with other professionals on a personalized learning platform; I chose what I want for no cost!

Leadership academy

I wanted to live tweet conference sessions instead of taking notes I’d never look at again

I started using because some friends of mine that I respected in education (2APs etc.) said that I needed to be on it and it was on Pd goals. Glad I did because I have learned a lot and met some great people and made some great friends

I wanted to stay connected to my students

Another teacher used it and showed me its possibilities. I swear it’s been the source of the best free professional development I’ve ever had. I’m constantly inspired by other educators out there! – 85

The same as most other things that draw me in. Curiosity and Wonder. The fundamental question: What’s this? Eleven years later, I’m still learning from following.

I started using it at NCSS 2016. I learned of the power of Twitter and and it has changed me as a teacher.

I joined after a conference where people were using it share their learning. Didn’t really get it until my first Twitter chat a few months later and realizing it was a level playing field where anyone could share out

The reason I joined – I was at a convention in WI where @E_Sheninger was speaking in 2013. He encouraged every single one of us to join by the end of the convention. I did.

Wanted to connect with other educators. Love hearing the ideas, and stories, shared by others so that I can grow in my own leadership and better serve my teachers. Some challenge my thinking and some support. Twitter for me is about growth opportunities.

The reason I “engaged” (which took me a few years after “joining”) – I was reading #KidsDeserveIt & #BeTheOne. Their reflective questions at the end of each chapter pushed me out of the role of Twitter observer to Twitter contributor. I have not looked back ever since!  

Celebrating our school story but it has become so much more!!

Rapid, creative sharing of ideas, resources, collaboration of math educators

To build a professional network! To be able to go and seek answers from people who do what I do!

Required by school admin to check in @ PD.

@kresak2j offered me chocolate..true story. @kresak2j gave intro PD to staff & placed chocolates in our mailboxes if we were caught tweeting (thanks, J!). From that day, I’ve been so impressed with the wealth of info at my fingertips & the experts I can connect with in an instant..love it

The college class I was taking encouraged it in order to increase digital communication

I wanted to connect with other educators at #ISTE14 and discovered that Twitter could help me learn and grow exponentially on my own time, in my own way. I’ve been a #ConnectedEducator ever since!

I read the book “The Innovator’s Mindset” by @gcouros GAME-CHANGER

I started in 2008. At first I just wanted to see what it was. Then in 2009 I found a huge running community as I prepared for my first marathon. Somewhere near the end of 2010 I discovered teacher friends and EDU & that has been my purpose here ever since.

I started because of the hype but quickly discovered it as a source to challenge my ideas, learn and connect with others that I would never have had the opportunity to meet otherwise

I wanted to connect with other educators and was encouraged to by friends in real life who have a strong network here.

I wanted to connect and learn and grow from likeminded positive educators in order to expand professionally!

I started this account last April. I became a Fund for Teachers fellow and they asked for my professional social media and I realized I didn’t have any. So, I started trying to figure it out. It’s been the best PD.


I joined because it seemed to be the thing to do at a conf I attended. I stayed as I realized there was more here than pics of food & running. What an amazing space in which to learn/share! Here you can find your voice. fellow edus, & all kinds of inspiration!

You can blame @burgessdave & @tishrich for introducing me to the professional benefits of being here.

I was inspired by @raehughart, and she led me on an amazing journey that has truly changed my life.

I joined Twitter because I was trying to grow my professional leadership within the education field. In the end I met some great people who helped me grow beyond my job and education and I’m extremely happy to call them friends and family!!

Building my professional learning network when I started my journey to become a teacher!

To connect with other school librarians and tech leaders. School librarianship is an island. Finding others in my content who were interested in honing their craft, sharing ideas, and building community led me to Twitter.

The then-new tech guy @kcalderw made me! LOL True enough story. Then again, you learn from people with different experiences. His #edtech experience and knowledge has transformed learning in our school, starting with something as simple as, “You need to get on Twitter.”

Started after attending a conference several years ago and wanted to stay connected to some of the presenters. I have found Twitter to be some of the best PD.

Increasing my personal learning network and connecting with other educators!


Work! Hobby!

Get new ideas and feel inspired

Wanted to be a part of a bigger teacher community

I had reached a point in my career when I was severely doubting my ability to enable positive change. I’ve been overwhelmed with joy in connecting with other educators and leaders who truly care. It has reinvigorated by passion to make a difference.

I joined Twitter to post pictures and share with parents what we are doing in the classroom. I have since found it a great place to connect with other educators.

My college professor @kvdixon showed us what a powerful tool Twitter could be for #PD .

I was beginning a 21st century Classroom and wanted to connect my students to other classrooms around the world! I also wanted to learn from other educators.

I was encouraged to use Twitter to connect with other educators, be inspired, and to seek out answers to questions.

I like others was looking to showcase what I was doing at work and collaborate worldwide.

4+ yrs ago, my colleague @heystryker encouraged me to join Twitter for the learning community it could provide. As an instructional technology coach, I wanted a way to get ideas, to see what others were doing. Eventually I was comfortable sharing my own ideas! Best decision ever!

I use Twitter to broadcast my essence – authentically, boundlessly, consistently, devotedly, expansively, fun-lovingly, gracefully, hopefully, lovingly transparently, vulnerably, wholeheartedly.

A bright young educator who showed me the opportunities to connect with educational thought leaders here! @b_e_sanders

True story: I came because @TheEllenShow wanted to ‘break Twitter ‘ when she was hosting Academy Awards. I wanted to see what that meant. I stayed when I stumbled upon #tlap & #bfc530. I can’t imagine going back. I have built an amazing #PLN and am better for it.

I started in 2012 when @gofrontrow hosted a @NorthBayCUE twitter training. It’s been a fantastic way to keep up to date on EdTech issues.

My job!

For me it was curiosity. Started poking around in 2009. Created the account as a “class newsfeed” but eventually moved toward the personal leaning/collaborating side and created a separate class account (@PS10Tech and now @HeathcoteTech)

I felt like Twitter provided me with positive, inspirational thoughts on education as well as the latest and greatest in the field. This helped me provide top-notch PD then, as a coach, and continues to do so now, as an administrator. I like remaining current!

Wanting to interact w/like-minded Ts having a similar experience to mine. Joined very close to beginning of Twitter when we were all trying to keep up w/everything new in leveraging tech in Ed. It quickly became my source of learning, camaraderie, & collaborative problem solving.

First to push a Donors Choose project but then did nothing for ~5 years. I moved to a new district that uses Twitter so I resurrected my account, but again did very little. Then @mradamwelcome did PD for our district mentioning the benefits. I found chats and the rest is history!

A friend who suggested that it was a great professional development tool for learning and global connections

I was speaking at a BOE meeting about class size and demands on teachers. Our Union asked if anyone was on social media. Suggested tweeting out as we waited for the BOE session to begin. So, I did ….

I wanted to create a group for our high school to promote positivity for our kids. Since then, I have followed so many other educators and more to better serve our students! There is so much out there!

Joined Twitter about a year and a half ago to connect to the #gamemyclass folks especially @MrHebertPE who are a bunch of badass gamifiers lighting up the classroom!

Initially it was used for publicity, to share a current event as it was happening. What am I enjoying? I appreciate witty remarks. I appreciate being able to choose what I want to see/read. As an educator, it’s a quick way to share out what’s happening in our classrooms.

It was introduced at a PD session. At first, I was clueless but once I got the hang of it, it has opened my eyes to so many positive things in my teaching career!

WSTA started to get involved with more educators

To learn!

Connection and building a PLN – learn from others. Share with others.

I wanted to connect with other educators.

The #clearthelists campaign got me started, and it’s been great to connect with teachers worldwide.

A colleague suggested I would find the like minded, similarly motivated educators I was looking to engage with, on #Twitter so I joined and she was right. Thanks @CathyWilson123

Professional development and networking  

Started twitter thanks to @PLTWorg during a Lead Teacher training! I think others are hesitant because it’s tough to start a social media platform with zero followers and no idea how to “get more”

I wanted to connect with educators. I’ve discovered a wonderful world of like-minded educators. I never knew about chats. Learned as I bumbled through. I love what I learn from our #PLN. I love to contribute & learn. I’ve made some amazing & supportive friends.

One of my grad school professors said that it was the best spot for PD. And it was!

I had a Twitter account for a few years and was just an observer. It wasn’t until a @gcouros presentation years ago that I saw the power of engaging in the platform. Haven’t looked back.

I joined to share the amazing work being done on our campus and within our district. Little did I know that it would allow me to make connections with people from around the globe. I have learned from so many master educators through chats and through their posts.

I was challenged to use it for developing a wider PLN.

Purely to find like-minded educators that I could learn from. I remember lurking for several years before I dare even say a peep! It continues to be my favorite space to develop myself in education and tech integration!

My AP actually encouraged it

The most expansive PLN ever!

My admin program was trying something “new” back in 2011

I had written my book Blended Vocabulary. The marketing team wanted me on Twitter to promote it. So glad I took the plunge! Have learned so much!

I was learning @Flipgrid and found a lot of tricks here!

Professional network

To become connected with other educators worldwide and locally to share ideas and learn new things which is a continual journey in Teaching.

You are amazing @NAlston9 @JohnnaParaiso suggested it to me many years ago, but it wasn’t until 2016 when I became addicted by discovering #Ellchat_BkClub and  @Toppel_ELD

Grant money

I was referred to Twitter by  @CBTennyson to use it for educational use in an ELL workshop. And have blossomed ever since.

Networking amongst other educators. It is awesome.

Get connected and learn from a larger community.

My principal

I did so for a grad class back in 2011 #edtech

I was at a conference 2012 and met Kelly Gallagher. He said he uses Twitter for work. My journey began right then and there.

And I started one at a PD workshop as a teacher. I didn’t use it for years until I became a Dept Chair and had to use it.

In all honesty. I made one in college because my professor made it an assignment.  I used it a bit back then but only recently in the last year or two got back into it after my department chair told me I should use it for PD.

Started using bc @kfairchild6 told me about this thing called “Twitter” where I could connect and learn with other educators. That was the Fall of 2016. I had just returned from an almost 3-year leave. Best advice! The classroom had changed so much! Glad I’m changing along w/it!

Is your mind swirling with all of the positive thoughts these educators shared? Jennifer Casa-Todd shares in her book Social LEADia, (2017), “Once you experience how powerful, meaningful, and transformation technology and social media connections can be, introducing them into your classroom for students to experience becomes not only desirable, but imperative.

I created WordArt of all these responses for you visual learners! It’s so interesting to see the words that seem to jump out of the heart at you.

So now, my question to all of you reading this is, how will you use the information to encourage others to come and learn with us? Will you share it at your school or district in hopes of helping them understand how many different reasons there are to join Twitter? How can this blog post work toward my dream of encouraging those not using Twitter to jump in, and either try it again, or get their feet wet? You can make a difference in achieving that goal. I believe we are stronger together!

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