A Blend of Social Media and Teaching

Written in partial fulfillment of graduate work completed at Dominican University. When we think of social media, we think of resources such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, GroupMe, and the like. But social media is not limited to any one platform or group of platforms. Renfro (2011) offers eight social media resources that can be incorporated into the classroom, some traditional, some non-traditional. These include: Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, Linkedin, School Tube, Edmodo, Animoto, and Jing.

“Forms of electronic communication (such as websites for social networking and microblogging) through which users create online communities to share information, ideas, personal messages, and other content (such as videos).”

Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary

We can think of YouTube or TeacherTube as social media sites because individuals have the ability to communicate with others. On the basic level, we need to think about the components of what entails social media to understand how we can incorporate it into education. I’d like to consider Learning Management Systems such as Schoology, and its ability for students to communicate and interact with others through posts, videos, etc, as an entity of social media. In broadening our understanding and possibilities of what we qualify as social media, we have greater opportunities to teach online safety, responsibility, and etiquette. But the question still remains, how specifically can we integrate social media in the classroom. Davis (2015) provides 12 specific ways to accomplish this. Some of these appear to be repetitive. Check out this link for specific details and examples.

  1. Tweet classroom status
  2. Write blog posts of what students are learning and reflections for parents
  3. Write blog posts for the general public
  4. Connect with other classes through social media
  5. Use Facebook to gain feedback, i.e. online polls
  6. Utilize YouTube to host a podcast or show
  7. Create a special interests project
  8. Ask questions about weather in other parts of the country
  9. Teachers and students collaborate and communicate with other classes
  10. Create projects with other teachers
  11. Share learning with the world
  12. Adopt a cause and document the learning process

I hope that many of these ideas will provide authentic learning opportunities for teachers to incorporate for students to gain a holistic approach to how social media can be used effectively and practice responsibility.


Davis, V. (2015, Feb). A guidebook for social media in the classroom. Retrieved from https://www.edutopia.org/blog/guidebook-social-media-in-classroom-vicki-davis

Renfro, A. (2011, Dec). 8 social media strategies for your classroom. Retrieved from http://www.gettingsmart.com/2011/12/developing-a-social-media-strategy-for-your-classroom/