The stakes for educating our youth have never been higher. The next generation of citizens must be prepared for an ever-changing world, and a workplace where creativity, insight and collaborative skills are especially highly-valued. To adapt to these new realities of education, the best teachers are constantly exchanging ideas on new styles of learning to understand which ones are most successful. Social media provides an important means for educators to extend their personal learning networks beyond geographical boundaries.
To recognize the value and importance of social media in K-12 education, here is the first edition of the Top Social Tech Leaders in K-12 education. The ranking is determined by a combination of factors including number of followers, Twitter list memberships, tweet volume and content and other metrics as tallied by several social influence scoring providers. On average, these K-12 technology professionals are members of over 300 lists and have over 6,000 followers.
In order for schools to teach students about social media, it is important for faculty and administration to be not only familiar with it, but adept at it as well. The vital concepts of digital citizenship and digital footprint are best learned by putting them into practice. Susan Bearden, number six on this list, has found it extremely rewarding to help teachers use Twitter to extend classroom discussions about literature beyond the classroom.
"The discussions these kids have are incredible -- I was so impressed with what the kids had to say. They learned great lessons about using social media appropriately and the public nature of Twitter posts. I guarantee that none of these students will ever use Twitter without an awareness of the impact on their digital footprint ever again," says Susan regarding students using social media for their class projects.
I invite you to join me in congratulating these must-follow top social K-12 technology professionals. Leading by example, all 100 understand the enormous value of social collaboration in education.