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Social Media in Early Childhood Education:E-Literacy and Professional Tips

  1. Social Media in Early Childhood Education: E-Literacy and Professional Tips Melanie Parlette-Stewart, BA, MLIS Twitter: @melanie_sarah_ April 2013
  2. Today we will cover . . . • Social Media and Early Childhood Education • Ethics and Security • Tools • Tips • Recommended Resources
  3. Why should I care about social media?
  4. • Communicate with your profession • Build your professional brand • Learn and engage
  6. Challenges Is social media a benefit or a distraction for early childhood educators?
  7. Benefit or Distraction? • Our work lives take a lot of energy. By the end of the day it might be hard to do much else. • Our work lives can benefit from our growth achieved through networking • More people engaging = better conversations – The time is now to jump in! • Connecting allows us to learn and collaborate with others
  8. Challenges Ethics and Responsibilities
  9. Ethics and Responsibilities College of Early Childhood Educators • Early Childhood Educators are current in their professional knowledge (Standard IV) • Early Childhood Educators build a climate of trust, honesty and respect in the workplace (Standard IV) • Professionalism as an Individual: role models for children, families, members of the profession . . . (Standard IV) • Confidentiality and Consent: Early Childhood Educators shall not disclose information concerning or received from children under their professional supervision, or the families of those children (Standard VI)
  10. Security • Digital literacy is key to being secure online • Social media sites intended for adults should not be used by children • Regular monitoring of security settings • Revision of policies and procedures regularly
  11. Policies • Does your organization need a social media policy? • Get opinions from people in your organization • Determine how to best ensure the privacy of the children • Privacy settings • Permission from parents if you plan to post photos • Use initials instead of full names • Key to engage with parents using a variety of methods • Be an advocate for the causes children, their families . . .
  12. ECE and Social Media TOOLS
  13. What is Twitter? • Microblogging social networking tool • Read and write messages of up to 140 characters
  14. Why should I be on Twitter? • Connect with clients / colleagues • Get feedback / engage • Develop your online brand • Keep up with the latest . . . news, trends, and more
  15. Your Twitter Profile
  16. Your Twitter Profile • Always use a professional photo, ideally a headshot • Include a bio – people want to know something about who they are following • Post at least two interesting tweets before you start to follow people • If you don’t have a website to link from your profile, provide your LinkedIn profile link
  17. How do I choose Tweeters to follow? • People Search: Search for specific people you are interested in following. • Use a directory: Twellow (Twitter profiles are indexed here by categories) • Explore who other people follow and are following
  18. Tweeters to Follow • NAEYC • EarlyChildhood News • Teaching Strategies • Canadian Child Care Federation • CCAC •
  19. #Hashtags to Explore • #ECE What’s a Hashtag? • #Preschoolers # People use the hashtag symbol # before a relevant • #EarlyEd keyword or phrase (no spaces) in • #PreK their Tweet to categorize those Tweets and help them show • #ecetech more easily in Twitter Search. • #childcare
  20. Tips to make the most of Twitter • Ask for help . . . ask for input, ask questions • Help others . . . answer questions, provide feedback • Plan a tweetup (meetup / conversation on Twitter, have a designated hashtag) • Make a plan to tweet often, set goals of how many original tweets / retweets each week
  21. What is Facebook? • Opportunity to develop both personal and professional pages and connect with colleagues • Join groups and follow pages of interest
  22. Why should I be on Facebook? • Get in touch (find and be found) • Learn and share professional experiences • Build your online career identity • Facebook for business
  23. Your Facebook Profile
  24. Your Facebook Profile • Personal – Don’t post unprofessional status updates – Make your profile picture a picture of you – Don’t post incriminating photos – Customize your privacy settings • Facebook changes their interface and privacy options regularly. Be prepared for change and regularly monitor your own settings.
  25. Your Facebook Business Profile • Business – Create a business page – Images and videos are best to promote visibility on feeds of followers – Engage and build relationships – Comment back – Link to your website or blog – Ask your friends to invite their friends
  26. Why should I have a Business Page (not a profile) on Facebook? • Access to Analytics (statistics) • Facebook is #1 • Branding • Listen – get feedback and answer questions • Engage – ask questions
  27. Pages on Facebook • Your alumni association • Professional groups
  28. Pages on Facebook • Early Childhood Professional Resource Centre (PRC) • Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario (AECEO) • KidsAbility Centre for Child Development • Campaign for a Canadian National Child Care System • Healthy Canadians • The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) • Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care (OCBCC) • Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario (AECEO)
  29. Tips to make the most of Facebook • People will search for you. Keep you image professional, update your background and education information and show your interests. • Connect with potential collaborators and/or employers. “Like” their pages. • Really think about the photos you post. • Keep your Facebook resume up to date. • Limit your friend list / expand your friend list • Be aware of what you post on Facebook.
  30. What is LinkedIn? • Database for professionals • Ability to search for professional contacts – Education, Company etc.
  31. Why should I be on LinkedIn? • Get in touch (find and be found) • Learn and share professional experiences • Build your online career identity
  32. Your LinkedIn Profile
  33. Your LinkedIn Profile • Always use a professional photo, ideally a headshot • Just use your name (do not include titles, acronyms, credentials) • Have a catchy headline • Connect with as many people as possible • Write in the first person • Build credibility through recommendations • Join Groups • Use your vanity URL • Own a company? Create a company profile
  34. Why should I join Groups on LinkedIn? • Learn from the discussions • Identify opportunities to collaborate • Discover best-practices • Explore and post job opportunities • Build relationships
  35. How do I choose Groups to join? • Corporate • Industry • Alumni • Geographic
  36. Groups on LinkedIn • Early Childhood Technology Network • Early Childhood Education, Child Care, and CCR&R Professionals... • Early Childhood Education Network • Early Childhood Professionals Group • Advocates of Early Childhood Education
  37. Tips to make the most of LinkedIn Groups • Plan to visit your top groups at least once a week (ideally 2-3 times/week) • Identify discussions in groups that interest you – Respond to comments – Provide insight (examples on your own experiences / reflections) – Ask questions • Start a discussion in a group • Be Active
  38. What is a Blog? • A website where you can communicate ideas, experiences and information on a regular basis
  39. Why should I have a blog? • Builds your online identity • Increases your credibility • Establishes you as an expert • Opportunity to have a voice
  40. Your Blog
  41. Tips for your Blog • Think about your audience – Your profession? – Your clients? – Your colleagues? • Think about why you would like to blog – Personal satisfaction? – Share your career and professional experiences? – Focus on a specific subject/ topic? • Think about your time – How much time can you commit? – Set a goal for how many posts per week/ per month
  42. Blog Tools • WordPress • Blogger • Tumblr
  43. Blogs to Read • Let the children play – Also provides a great list of blogs • Topics in Early Childhood Education • The Living Classroom • For the love of Learning • Inspirational Early Childhood Education
  44. What is Pinterest? • A content sharing site • Users can “pin” images, videos and other web objects
  45. Why should I have Pinterest? • Have a presence • Gather ideas and become inspired • Method of filing and organizing potential projects or ideas
  46. Your Pinterest
  47. Tips for your Pinterest • Have a variety of boards – display your interests • Post your resume and accomplishments • Monitor photos and comments • Check your security
  48. Pinterest Boards to Follow
  49. Pinterest Boards to Follow • Favourite Early Childhood & Education Blogs • Early Childhood Education Skills • Early Childhood Education Ideas • Spring Crafts and Activities • Arts and Crafts With Kids
  50. ECE and Social Media TIPS
  51. Thinking about social media . . . • Use your best judgment • Privacy, privacy, privacy • Don’t overdo it • Keep things up to date • Give credit where credit is due • Have fun!
  52. Model Good Social Media Practices • Don’t post private information on personal profiles (i.e. phone numbers / addresses) • Block harassing or bullying posts • Monitor the activities of children online – Did you know that 40 out of every 1,000 children on Facebook are 6 years old or younger*? – Software – Social Media just for kids i.e.,,, and *Source: parents-of-children-on-facebook-shares-results-on-realities-parental-concerns/
  53. ECE and Social Media QUESTIONS
  55. More Resources • • • • • • • • 16488475 • education • know-to-help-teachers-use-technology • • • • • • ecosystem
  56. More Resources • ttp:// • • • • • • • • AECEO/189978994376068?group_id=0 • • • • • • • • education • online-communication-tools • education •

Editor's Notes

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