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How to show Facebook friends you care using lists?


From time to time my Facebook (and Twitter) friends express how lonely it can be online because they don’t understand how to get the most out of the site, get others to comment on their stuff or be blessed to have them “talk to the wall” when they don’t have Mari Smith celebrity status (Love you girl). So how do you show Facebook friends that you care even if it doesn’t get the social response you desperately need?

Social Media: PLN 7.5

Good friends know how to grow that covenant personal relationship sharing affections that eventually transcends boundaries that guard our core feelings. Yet many of us forget these basic truths when connecting with people we call our friends.

That’s where Facebook Lists come in. By creating lists those you follow are placed under a microscope for smoothly merging onto the many social media highways out there. That way your paths are more likely to cross outside of your personal space. It’s an effective way for getting yourself onto Facebook radar patterns. Not so much for being seen as it is for discovering the minds of those added as friends so that you can comment on their status updates, notes, and “Like” their pictures and links.

If you ever wondered why you never saw so and so’s status updates in the Most Recent and Top News feeds of your home page it’s because you didn’t know where to look.

Creating and closely following lists helps to discover content you need for showing friends how much you care.

You become valuably important by establishing trust and being found credible over time, two of the most valuable qualities we can contribute to the community teaches Facebook friend Michael Port, national best selling author of Beyond Booked Solid, Think Big Manifesto, and The Contrarian Effect.

Facebook and Twitter friend Tiffany Michelle Alexander says, “I have several lists. Family and close friends, book lovers, film lovers, hometown folks, -easier for me to keep track of people and things that way.” So how do we create these lists?

1) You can take care of placing people that you’ve requested into lists before they accept you as a friend by clicking the Add to List drag down bar. The same can be done for those trying to be added as a friend to your Facebook.



2) I always recommend adding a comment.



3) If you didn’t catch them before now, it’s Ok. Go to your Edit Friends option (top right Home > Profile > Account link) and place them into a list or create a new one.



4) Finding your list can be a little tricky, but I’ll walk you through being able to follow your friends more closely. From your Home page click Friends in the left column of the page. Go down a little click More. That’s it, just find the list you’ve created and click again to find all those lost updates.



Stay focused. Stay confident and accountable for making friends smile like Chris Gloss champions. I guarantee they’ll start replying more often to your stuff.

Your Best Year Teaching: If you have been inspired from this article please consider leaving a comment and subscribing to the RSS feed (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader. Please send your friends to http://laroncarter.com to connect with me or @laroncarter on Twitter.

I can’t seem to update my Twitter list?


I created my Twitter account long before lists were developed. Now that it exists I’m not able to over come the huge task of organizing all of my connections. You’d think I would at least be able to add new followers to list I created over a year ago, it’s embarrassing.

Social Media: PLN 7.4

I don’t know what it is about getting caught up on organizing my Twitter List. Maybe I feel a rant coming on because the WiFi I’m on in the public library is so slow right now. But honestly, the issue of staying current with my list may cause me to hire one of my young cousins to work it out, because the benefits far out way the challenge.

Out source on a small budget

The way I look at it is that I’m going to spend valuable time learning how Twitter works, sharing newly discovered content, and creating personal leaning networks I should at least use my time wisely by following the lists feature. Otherwise the challenge of following those with shared interest become closer to resembling a needle in a haystack everyday my small account grows bigger.

Here’s why lists are so valuable:

Brings valuable content to the top
If you’re smart the reason for following people is to connect and learn. Lists allow you to place users into categories of like interest that brings those feeds to the top of all the other noise.

Sends a message I care about your news
You’ll rarely see the news feeds of those you care about if you’re not on line when they are posting their content. By clicking on the lists you’ve created of them you will be able to comment replies more often sending a message that you are genuinely following their stuff.

Subscribed to lists feature builds network
Once you subscribe to someone’s list your learning network is exponentially increased and your feeds become more visible as well. Who wouldn’t like more followers for a daily ego rush?

Makes me more Twitter Savvy
I love my social media, but my time is valuable when I’m online. Creating category lists and maintaining it (ouch) is just plain smart use of your time.

Ok. Ok already. I’m committed to naming June, Social Media List Update Month. Being a smart follower is far too important not to.

Stay focused. Stay confident and stay on top of your list for Twitter savvy consciousness.

Your Best Year Teaching: If you have been inspired from this article please consider leaving a comment and subscribing to the RSS feed (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader. Please send your friends to http://laroncarter.com to connect with me or @laroncarter on Twitter.

Categories: PLN, Stressed Out K-12 Tags: ,

5 Reasons Why You Need To Schedule Tweets

You maybe thinking, “Why in the world would I need to schedule tweets?” Someone told me, “Twitter wasn’t deep enough for all of that.” Maybe it isn’t, but once you jump into the wave of PLN’s (personal learning networks) and all of the conversations happening on the Internet, it becomes a World Wide Web discussion with different tweet patterns and time zones.

Social Media: PLN 7.3

Twitter operates on a community model. Think about it. Don’t you use social media around your availability and the stuff that happens throughout the day? Scheduling tweets allows me to make sure others see my content on their schedule rather than when it’s convenient for me to post information live. Scheduling creates flexibility to schedule the same or similar tweets more than once for increased visibility. Here are a few ideas for how to best use scheduled tweets:

Reason 1: Eliminate forgetting to tweet. If you you’re into #followfriday, #teachertuesday, or some other hash tag, schedule them when you think of it throughout the week. You’ll eliminate forgetting about it or missing the opportunity because something came up after you ran out in a hurry to do your Friday banking.

Reason 2: Tweet on “their” schedule. Have you logged on and realized that others mentioned you in tweets several hours earlier? Schedule your reply around the time of day they tweeted you. Of course you want to have real time conversations whenever possible. So, check their profile to see if they are tweeting live at the moment, if not online, schedule your reply comment. It’s not an exact science, but it works.

(Keep in mind others may also schedule their tweets or they’ve stepped away if they don’t respond within minutes of your reply.)

Reason 3: Free up time for live chatting. If joining Twitter hash tag conversations is your thing, the amount of incoming tweets can upload the search grid so fast that just following the thread takes up all your energy. A remedy is to schedule well thought out comments [including hash tags] so that you can focus on a few tweets while the continuity of your update thread remains fluid in the discussion.

Reason 4:
Make yourself visible in other time zone rush hours. Twitter users from the opposite end of the country or on the other side of the world may never see your live tweets if they only watch their home feeds to follow what you’re saying on Twitter. This is a good time to schedule content links, Re-Tweets, and Replies.

Reason 5: Spread out your non-reply links. The majority of my tweets were links to great blogs, web stories, and websites when I started K12Live: Teachers using Twitter. That kind of tweeting gives your profile the appearance you aren’t socializing with other people. And although you maybe producing fantastic content people like to connect with people for social reasons. Think of it as personal learning networks that interact on a human level. Although you maybe tweeting fantastic content – produce a profile image that actually looks like you’re having real conversations.

Stay focused. Stay confident and schedule in success.

Your Best Year Teaching: If you have been inspired from this article please consider leaving a comment and subscribing to the RSS feed (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader. Please send your friends to http://laroncarter.com to connect with me or @laroncarter on Twitter.

5 Steps Toward Hootsuite Twitter Search Mastery



Hootsuite is my social media client of choice. Our relationship was began the day my Apple Power Book G4 wouldn’t properly install the Adobe AIR needed to run Tweetdeck and I haven’t looked back since. Hootsuite is also getting a lot of buzz from iPhone users for being the current client application of choice for integrating multiple accounts with ease and flexibility.

Social Media: PLN 7.2

In my blog Social Media: PLN 7.0 and 7.1 I shared a few simple, but valuable tips for jumping into the wave of social media PLN’s (personal learning network). This blog post gets specific with identifying a few subgroups that have been making buzz in the K12 education online community and walking you through a less stressed entrance into their space. Once you have followed the Hootsuite video and read the blog for setting up your account, it’s time to turn up productivity.


Step 1: Create Public or Private Group Twitter List Column

Click the Add Column link off to the right side of the window and create a Twitter List (Conference Speakers, example) or choose one already existing in your account. Once you have done this click Create Column.


Step 2: Search for Usernames to Follow – New or Existing

Type the username right into the search box on the right of window (it’s next to the Add Column slide adjuster).


Step 3: Add People to the Column

Click, drag, and drop the avatar picture you want to follow into the new Twitter List column (Shelly Terrell @ShellTerrell, example). Creating a list column of 10 – 20 people to follow closely will take the hard work out of following. And you can repeat up to 10 new columns per tab.


Step 4: Create Hash Tag Searches of Topics or Terms

Start a search column of the hash tags and topics you’re interested in the same way you created the Twitter List by clicking the Add Column link and typing in whatever you want (Teacher Appreciation Day, example).


Step 5: Follow Someone New While Doing All That Creating

Click on some of those Tweets (Ricki James @RickiSiouxan, example) and Follow a new friend, Reply, Re-Tweet, or Add to List you’ve just created. It’ll be cool growing your PLN.

Stay focused. Stay confident and master those search skills.

Your Best Year Teaching: If you have been inspired from this article please consider leaving a comment and subscribing to the RSS feed (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader. Please send your friends to http://laroncarter.com to connect with me or @laroncarter on Twitter.

5 Steps for entering a social media PLN conversation

Social media communities like Twitter, Ning, and Elluminate have Personal Learning Network subgroup events that can be more of a challenge than opening up a Twitter account and trying to figure out what to do next. Finding your voice and jumping into an online conversation that’s loading upwards of 18,000 feeds per hour adds another few intense weeks onto your eight-month training period. These steps help out a little with finding a door to enter.

Social Media: PLN 7.2

In the previous blog (PLN 7.1) I shared some simple, but valuable tips for jumping into the wave of social media PLN’s. This blog post gets specific with identifying a few subgroups that have been making buzz in the K12 education online community and walking you through a less stressed entrance into their universe.

Step 1: Discover who’s who in the community
• Do a little checking around on those you are following. The first thing I do when doing an online background check begins with scrolling through 3 – 6 pages of their Twitter status updates to get a feel of how they’re using Twitter.

• Then I do a search for their username to find out more about whom they’re actually engaging in conversations.

• The next thing I do is follow their web linked to Twitter. If that proves uninteresting I may do a Google Search on their name matching the location and avatar found on Twitter to better match who’s who.

• If they are a blogger I usually enter the URL into my Google Reader to receive RSS feeds each time there is a new post.

Step 2: Closely follow those that have shared interest and personalities
As mentioned earlier following should actually mean following those you add to your PLN. Create client list and groups of those you’re most interested in following closely. And take time on the weekend to read their Twitter and blog post. There is no better way to connect with someone than to make comments on their blog. It is extremely exciting for a blogger to know that others appreciate their articles.

Step 3: Know which client and communities works best for you
Because there are literally thousands of applications known as clients used for social media communications I’ll narrow it down to a few for now and turn this post into a living document by posting updates when needed.

Tweetdeck: A highly favored free social media application offering a downloadable stand-alone program to install onto your computer. Tweetdeck is used by serious Twitter users for status updates for Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, Ping, and other online social media communities from one window with flexibility of creating customized columns of search information, Tweet scheduling, status and a lot more.

Hootsuite: A fast growing social media client of choice because it offers everything Tweetdeck has, but there is no need to download a separate application. Hootsuite is a Twitter client service meaning all you need is a username and password and you can log onto any internet connected computer or smart phone and it’s on. Hootsuite is getting a lot of noise for being the outstanding Twitter client for Apple’s iPhone users.

Tweetgrid: Seems to be used in addition to Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, and regular web users because of a much quicker real time status update feed. Users claim it feels more authentic offering a pause button so you can catch your breath between Tweets.

Elluninate: This client is a downloaded application created by social learning consultant Steve Hargadon that offers cutting edge PLN flexibility for educators, support staff, and students in both public and private communities.

Ning: A pioneering social media community platform that was quickly embraced by educators in the earlier days PLN boom before it acquired the name.

Edutopia: Created by the George Lucas Foundation offers K-12 community platform for educators, magazine, blog, reports, and videos. Great for joining groups like New Teacher Connections.

Step 4: Stage a few general topic comments
Setting aside time to stage a few prepared comments and scheduling them in advance to be posted during your PLN online event allows you to do some pre-background investigating, have multiple feeds in the conversation, and remain focused on the status updates that interest you the most all at once.

Step 5: Check for comment mentions about you frequently
Once you are engaged into the conversation like #edchat (Tue. 12pm/7pm EDT) or #nchat (Wed. 4pm PDT/7pm EDT) it’s not hard to forget that people in your PLN are commenting to your status updates without seeing them in the live feed because it maybe zipping by at the speed of light. Take your time, do your homework, and you’ll do fine.

Stay focused. Stay confident and come on in.

Your Best Year Teaching: If you have been inspired from this article please consider leaving a comment and subscribing to the RSS feed (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader. Please send your friends to http://laroncarter.com to connect with me or @laroncarter on Twitter.

5 Tips for jumping into the wave of Twitter PLN’s


Personal learning network or as we educators have embraced PLN to be the newest and coolest way to connect, develop, and learn more about our craft and the people that share our profession. There isn’t an exact science for growing your PLN (group of people you go to for information) using social media platforms, but jumping into the wave can feel like putting your toes into a large body of water to test the temperature before slowly dipping in. So here are some tips to warm the water before the jump.

Social Media: PLN 7.0

No needs to stress out over trying to fit into social media personal learning networks if you are feeling like you are behind the learning curve. I tend to always miss participating with the newest and hottest thing on the market. Whether it’s the most popular car, latest shoes crave, or state of the art technology, I jump into the wave well after the ripples turn dribbles. Even creating my blog and later @K12Live were several years behind everyone else – I know how you feel.

Tip 1: Get a web link. If you don’t have a personal website, blog, or Linkedin to link to your Twitter account create a Google Profile and use that URL web address. Google profiles are a great tool because you can put as much or as little info as you want and instantly become part of Google’s community. Don’t leave the web address blank because you’re building a PLN and being transparent is very personal for allowing other to learn about you.

Tip 2: Google search for: eBooks on Twitters for teachers; Social media for teachers; Twitter communities for educators; Nings for PLN and educators and classroom. Look for these groups on Facebook and Linkedin as well. This type of research gets you more familiar with what’s out the without before jumping in to the water.

Tip 3: Pick a username for branding yourself. Make it as short as possible and easy to write down when your say, “You can find me on twitter @___________.” Make it as simple as possible for them to find you on twitter and follow the web link to more contact info like email, other profiles, blogs, and phone if you like. (Create a Twitter account here.)

Tip 4: Join an established Twitter community. There hundreds of ways to build your list of people to follow, but joining a group that shares your interest is going to reduce the stress of building your PLN. Here are a few that I belong to, tell them I sent you: PB works twitter4teacher, Classroom 2.0, Elluminate, The Educator’s PLN, Edutopia, K12Live Facebook, and I have assembled over 1000 teachers and support staff in the following folder of @K12Live. (also see pp 36 – 39 of Best Year Teaching for more)

Tip 5: Meet people. Follow greet and meet instructions learned from your grandmother and read this eBook from Steve Hargadon on Social Networking in Education. I’ll follow up with more detailed tips for jumping into specific online communities in my next blog post.

Best Year Teaching: If you have been inspired from this article please consider leaving a comment and subscribing to the RSS feed (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader. Please send your friends to http://laroncarter.com to connect with me or @laroncarter on Twitter.