First off, I should start with that I do a lot of professional development about social media in education and why it is a GOOD THING to share and be shared with. I recently wrote a blog post for Sopris Learning's EdView360 blog all about this, and how as a teacher we need to destroy the seemingly negative stereotype that is attached to social media in education. There is so much awesome stuff out there for the classroom that it needs to be shared and reshared over and over again. I get so many of my lesson ideas and cool classroom projects from other educators I follow on twitter. Just this morning I got an email from a fellow teacher (who I've never met!) in Maryland wanting to collaborate about a project my kiddos did in the past--and all of this was made possible because of social media and sharing. I have a twitter, Google+, YouTube, and blog all dedicated solely to my education connections and sharings. I share on these networks in hopes that my education ramblings and ideas will be of service to other teachers, just as I use these networks to find things that will be of service to me in my classroom.
So putting my educational social networkings aside, I do admit that I share a lot on my personal networks...and I do so for many reasons. I'm gonna list them, because I like lists and I think they emphasize my points more since they are listy-like and stick out from these paragraphs...so here I go:
1. I have family and friends all over the country and the world--many of them I would lose touch with if it were not for Facebook or Instagram. With me posting pictures of Patrick and Scooter (let's be honest, 95% of my postings are of my baby and fur baby), I feel like I'm giving them a glimpse into their lives even though they are hundreds--or thousands--of miles away. Yes, I could email or text pictures--but life is crazyyyyy busy these days with a mobile-almost-one-year-old, so as informal as it might be, it's just easier for this mama to post it on Facebook or Instagram and share it with everyone at once. And, I just like sharing our family's ramblings, excitements, and milestones for others to enjoy as well! Is it bad that I like sharing things with others?! I think that's why I'm a teacher: I like to talk, and teach, and share with others.
2. Instagram is a PHOTO SHARING ONLY app. It's what it was made for! It is simple and awesome--I blogged wayyyyy back like 3 years ago about this awesome app, and I can safely say 3+ years later I am still loving it. And I don't think twice about posting 15+ pictures a day on it either, because THAT'S WHAT IT IS FOR! As my friend Tiff said, "If people don't want to see a ton of photos of my kid and think I'm over posting, uh, don't follow me. That's what Instagram is for."--I couldn't agree more Tiff. And I love that it is a digital photo album of all of my ramblings--I love that my Timehop app reminds me daily what I posted in the past year, two, or more, and then I love that I can jump to any date via MyInstaAlbum app and revisit or download any pics I need. I cannot tell you how many times I can't find a certain picture on my iPhone or computer and I just jump on this app, go to the date, and download it. FREE digital photo album. I love it.
MyInstaAlbum is an ah-mazing app--check it out if you're an Instagrammer--so much easier than manually going back through all of your pics in the native IG app.
Timehop app lovingly reminds me what I posted in years past on this date--which is awesome. A walk down memory lane each morning (like today, which reminded me a year ago I was more than ready to be done being pregnant--haha, I still had 12 days to go!)
3. Scooter doesn't count. Okay, that's a lie. He totally counts, because no matter how delusional I think it is, I am (and sometimes Mike too) in fact am the one behind Scooter's social media postings. But Scooter's social media ramblings are actually for a purpose (most of the time)--pup has himself a job! So his bacon (literally! haha) depends on his social media postings. Scooter has gotten so many new followers and friends because of his pictures, and I love that there are people out there who've never met Scooter in person but love his antics anyways. I feel guilty if a day or two goes by and he hasn't shared anything; he's got some serious fans and I feel like I owe it to them to share what this posable pup is doing all day! Plus, this is a great way for my students--who are always eager to follow me--to stay connected with "me" through Scooter.
Scooter's got a ton of fans out there--and we are sooooo grateful for all the Scooter-love he gets! That's the reason he (I) keep postin' Scootie antics.
4. I don't care who sees what I post. Before I post anything--blog posts included!--I always think, "Okay, will this offend anyone? Does this make me look bad? Is this appropriate if my students saw it? Am I okay with my name attached to this?" And if I'm okay with all of that, I post it. Usually what I post is Scooter and Patrick--and I'm 100% okay with that and whoever sees it. I don't mind giving people a glimpse into our lives--if I did, I wouldn't post it! And doing this got Scooter a job and a lot of recent publicity (back to #3)--which is awesome. Plus, posting means (back to #1) I'm sharing our lives with friends and family near and far, which I know I love seeing what's going on in their lives, so I hope they like seeing what's going on in ours.
Whew. Okay, so there are my explanations as to why I post things...and why I may be an oversharer--and I'm okay with that. I love that I'll be able to give Patrick (and any future babies) more pictures than he could possibly want from his baby years when he needs them for a school project, or wants to look back at them to show his friends the silly pictures his mom took of him and his pup Scooter.
I really do embrace that I'm an oversharer--so many awesome things have come into my life because of the things I share and post--from YouTube videos of classroom projects, to a pumping blog post, to Scooter cuddling Beggin' Strips--and I've met so many awesome people through social media. Yes, there are evils that posting on social media can bring, but I emphasize the word can, because not everything that's posted on social media is bad or brings bad things. Most of the time it brings awesome things: new connections, friendships, sharing with others near and far, and so much more. I've made tons of new friends that I've never met through social media! My love of cloth diapers has connected me with so many other fluffybum mamas out there and it's all be through social media. There are good people in this world, and I enjoy sharing our good life with all of you!