Why we use social media
In today’s world, social media is everywhere, and is used for a lot more than chatting with friends and sharing the odd picture or two. Schools all over the world have found it to be a really engaging way of celebrating what is going on both in and out of the classroom, and creating a real sense of community, and, like it or loath it, it is becoming a growing part of school life.
Improving community outreach is one of the biggest benefits of schools becoming more digitally savvy. Social media allows us to keep parents up to date on what the children are getting up to on normal week days as well as big events. Parents can see what their children are doing in Science, Art, PE and more, in the classrooms and outside in the playground. Photos can be shared instantly, everyday, and during events so our parents are seeing photos, news and announcements in real time.
Our social media accounts have been especially necessary and helpful this year, and has become an invaluable asset for sharing with parents what their children have been getting up to in a time when they haven’t been able to come into the school. Parents increasingly tell us that it can make all the difference to them feeling part of everyday school life.
However, social media can be used for a lot more than sharing school news. It can be used to get in contact with the wider community, link up with other schools and organisations, schools can use it to cast their chartable nets wider, and past pupils are able to keep in contact with ease.
Instagram is a fantastic way to see the highlights of events and happenings, these photos are hand selected high quality photos, with regular postings throughout the week. Instagram also allows us to post ‘stories’ of events in real time, so parents are able to view videos and snippets of pupils. For example, on Sports Days Instagram really comes into its own, with a range of high quality pictures as well as videos of the children participating in the sports whilst the event is taking place.
Twitter is a great place to find daily news from the schools, hear about what the children are getting up to in class as well as event reminders, advertising, video clips and quotes. Twitter is also a great tool for engaging with the local community and businesses/charities that might have an interest in getting it touch. Hashtags make it easy to connect with others in the community or with those further afield when taking part in events like World Book Day or other charitable occasions.
YouTube allows us to make much more lengthy videos meaning we can share a lot more of what is going on in school. We have found that more and more parents are enjoying watching videos of their children in lessons, on trips and when performing. As YouTube allows for much longer videos we can upload recordings of shows/ assemblies and events without having to cut things out, saving parents from having to record events themselves.
YouTube is also great tool for advertising, allowing prospective parents to see what life is like at the schools and watch interviews with staff, school tours etc.
There are over 42 million Facebook users in the UK and it’s the most popular social networking site across all age groups. We use it to regularly showcase school activities and events. Facebook is also one of the best ways of connecting with past students, they can follow the schools’ page or join multiple alumni groups to stay in contact.
More and more schools are using Facebook is as a tool for advertising, as it allows you to reach highly targeted audiences.
With over 3 billon people now using social media, most checking Facebook, Instagram and Twitter multiple times a day, it is no wonder schools are getting involved.