Website Wednesday: A Teacher’s Alternative to Twitter in the Class



by Kristie Burk

Sometimes teachers may need to talk with their students online in real time, especially when they are not meeting face-to-face every day. Today’s Meet is a place where people can chat for free.  The website also allows teachers to tap into the back channel of their classroom; a back channel is everything that is going on in the classroom that is not coming from the teacher, such as questions being asked among students. Many teachers effectively use Twitter and hashtags for this purpose; however, not every student is allowed to have a Twitter account.  On Today’s Meet, students can post in 140 characters or less for free and without needing an account.

When teachers want to use Today’s Meet, they create a “room” by naming it and determining when it will close. They can then share the room’s URL with their students who join the room merely by typing in their name. Today’s Meet can be used synchronously (all the students are online at the same time) or asynchronously. When the room is closed, the teacher and/or the students can save the transcript for future reference.

Teachers can use Today’s Meet for:

  • formative assessment in a face-to-face class
  • exit tickets
  • class note taking during a video or lecture
  • online office hours to answer questions
  • reviewing key material for a test or quiz

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