Fahrenheit 451 Tweets

I used Storify to pull together a bunch of tweets about the novel my AD English 9 students are currently reading. This is the first time I’ve used Storify, but I’ve seen it a lot, especially in bundling tweets following a discussion.

I’m thinking about working this into an assignment, maybe requiring certain hashtags for me to follow: #Fahrenheit451, #RayBradbury, #mrshawke. I’ve had students creating tweet-like posts in writing before, but I’ve never used Twitter as an assignment. One issue would be that a Twitter account is not a class requirement. (Do teachers do that? Probably.) I’m pretty sure most of my students have Twitter accounts, though; I will be asking soon.

Basically, once you set up an account, you just search for content from various social networks like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Flickr. When you see something you want to include in your story, you click and drag it over. You can also click to make text boxes in between the pictures, videos, tweets, etc.

Storify has many options, so I’m going to post a few different versions to see how they work.

This is what Storify calls the “Full Header Story”:

This is the “Mini Header Story”:

This is the “Full Header Grid with a border”:

And this is the “Mini Header Slideshow”:

I’m not sure why the “full header” examples are not showing all of the content, but only the tweets that contained pictures. I guess I have some investigation to do.

I think I like the “Mini Header Story” best. What do you think?

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Freshman Orientation

For three hours on Tuesday evening, I had the pleasure of meeting about 36 of my new 9th-graders and their families at GW’s Freshman Orientation.

I have two advanced freshman English classes this year (1st and 6th periods) with almost 50 freshmen total on my rolls as of yesterday morning. So, including the student and mother I met on Friday, that makes about 3/4 that I’ve met already. Not bad. :)

At times C106 got pretty packed up front, with everyone trying to go over the materials list and complete the sign-in sheet. And then there was my “Parents’ Wall”:

I gave parents three sticky notes each, one for each section.

I can tell by the number of sticky notes on the board that some parents didn’t do it, and that’s okay. (I know Mr. Hawke would look at one of our kids’ teachers like she/he were crazy if they tried this on him. :P)

Overall, the experience was a very positive one. My students seemed very enthusiastic for the most part, and their parents seemed very engaged. I only wish I’d been able to talk with more of my students’ parents one-on-one.

This evening, we have our school-wide Open House. I may get to see some of my freshmen again, coming back to make sure they can navigate the hallways. And I hope to meet the other freshmen who weren’t able to come by Tuesday and my three classes of sophomores. . . AND all their parents!!

Thanks to Meredith Stewart for the great parent-participation idea. :)

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