G&T Social Media & Web Site Support
On Giftedness, Support and my experiences with the Social Media Scene:
The most amazing thing happened this year… after having been a bit dubious about the new social media explosion, being one of the more ‘mature’ users.. I decided that if I did not start to explore and find out about all these fast evolving platforms, I would soon be left, so far behind in the dust, that I would never be able to catch up..;-D.
So I started exploring and experimenting… I had dipped my toes into Facebook last year, and had found it very beneficial for keeping contact with my far flung family… as I could chat, send messages and send and view photographs and generally keep up with all their news. I had also begun to use Skpe quite a bit as it was much more economical on long distance calls, and collaborate with others around the world. What I didn’t know, was how many folk, including those who offer support for the gifted were also out there using this technology..
Twitter – It came to my attention after my first and hesitant steps in getting familiar with twitter, a social media web-based app, on which folk can chat to each other, or send messages, but only with 140 characters.. thus making one think and put their thoughts down in a concise, and often clear format.. The thing is that as you begin to ‘follow’ folk then they too begin to ‘follow’ you… and often bring along a whole lot of other folk as well. Essentially you build up a following… who read your ‘tweets’ that you are sharing with the rest of the world… and you most likely will become part of many other peoples ‘followings’ as you begin to read their ‘tweets’ and become interested in them.. Fabulous resources and links are shared..
Through this I discovered a whole world of folk out there.. tweeting about #gifted issues, including very familiar names such as Hoagies Gifted and Talented Page, The Davison Institute, and SENG.. who also run very informative and useful websites. I discovered that several Irish Supporters where also using this format.. including CTYI, Giftedkids.ie and Daynuv, (also running websites) as well as many Irish individuals to include the Frazzlid and Dazzlid parent team who are the authors of a new and up and coming Blog site.. and many Irish teachers. There are just thousands of others out there too, good people and organisations sharing their expertise, knowledge and links to websites, articles and tools for teaching.. a wonderful learning platform. It is simple and easy to register and use twitter, and once registered, and ready to tweet and join the twitter gifted community.. all one needs to do is to put #gifted and #gtchat after your comments, and it will reach folk tweeting about gifted issues, then, you will find that others will start following you, and soon chatting and sharing info and links and you will be on your way… See the ‘GTChat ‘ page on this Blog site for more info on this community..
Blogs… Blogs there seems to be no end of useful blogs out there that folk are running.. these are individual people’s pages, kind of like little mini personalised websites where a person can share their thoughts and views of the world or issues they feel strongly about… some have the capability of having several pages where you may share other information that you may feel is relevant.. If this is of interest to you two platforms that seem to be popular are Google, and them WordPress.. There is a small selection of different blogs related to giftedness available to explore on the Blogroll located in the left column of this site. There are people from all over the world doing/using this type of platform to share information and thoughts, so it is a great place to explore and connect with people in a multicultural arena..
Second Life and Virtual Worlds are another platform that is fast being seen as a useful tool. People can hold meetings, have conferences, and exchange information with each other in a virtual environment. A person may go to Second Life site, develop and Avatar, or a cartoon type character of self, which you are in control of moving through and talking through , in the Second life virtual world/place.. It is important, however to be aware that there are many many worlds within the second life world, and some are more ‘risqué’ than others, such as the business or educational ones, I have not used this very much yet, but I have it on good authority that it is a good idea to have an idea of where you want to go within this cyberland, or you might end up in rather unusual places ;-D.
Daynuv in Ireland has done a lot of work in this format in schools in Ireland, and is always happy and eager to collaborate with others both nationally and internationally. If you would like to try and use this platform, there is an gifted event coming up on the 28th of August, the first Second Life Virtual Parents Gifted Conference, being hosted by Roya of the Bavarian Gifted Support Centre or Begabungszentrum. Roya is an excellent English speaker as well, so if interested just click on the link here and ask her for directions of how to join in..
I am sure that this explosion of people breaking down the barriers and borders, cyber minds meeting in cyberspace is a great way forward to increase our understanding of others and our communal learning and knowledge as a global gifted community.. Hopefully it will make us all stronger and more affective as we advocate for our children wherever we are living.. and it is good to explore these platforms as it is a sure thing that our gifted kids and young folk will be using a whole lot of these and more not only now, but in the future.. so probably a good thing to get a little familiar with at least some of them…;-D
It is important to realise that there is a vast number of useful websites out there in cyberspace.. and can be difficult to try to choose what to look at, or indeed list all of them on one page. So in the interest of simplicity, I am going to list two of the more Popular Websites below of use to anyone looking for information on Gifted. When time allows I will endeavour to make more additions.
Hoagies Gifted and Talented Page – for all things gifted for parents and educators
Davison institute maintain a vast archive of articles on all things gifted, which they share and offer to the public on their site