Monday, 19 October 2015

Teaching Social Media

Finished October 12
Teaching Social Media: The Can-Do Guide by Liz Kirchoff

This book starts with an introduction that includes an overview of social media, why we teach about it, how to get organizational support if you don't already have it, and where to start. It outlines the preparation and planning that pertain to this type of teaching, ideas around format for the teaching, and the arguments for either live teaching or canned powerpoint teaching.
There is discussion of tone, and this is important as a casual tone fits well with this content. People have a lot of questions and they should be made to feel comfortable to ask those questions. For each class, you need to assess your audience and adjust your teaching for any difficulties particular to that group.
The following chapters deal with individual social media programs and follow similar outlines, covering common questions and concerns, variations for teaching, notes for the instructor, ways to use that program, sample handouts to use, and a list of some users of that social media that you may want to follow. Not all social media programs have all these sections, as they may not apply.
Chapters that dedicated to a particular social media include Twitter, Foursquare, Yelp, Pinterest, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+.
Then there is a chapter that gives shorter overviews of some other programs, including Goodreads, MyFitnessPal, TripAdvisor, Reddit, Tumblr, Ravelry, Pandora, Prezi, and GoogleDrive. It is interesting to note that some popular ones are missed, such as Instagram and Flickr. Of course, there are so many social media programs now they couldn't possibly cover them all. Here's a link to a Wikipedia list.
The Conclusion wraps things up nicely, talking about how to tailor these classes to your community, ways to evaluate whether the learning is happening, and how to stay effective and relevant.
This is a useful guide for those libraries just starting out teaching these programs.

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