Rise of the “Teacher Influencers”: Examining the benefits and conundrums

ID: 51771 Type: Panel
  1. Tonia A. Dousay, University of Idaho, United States
  2. Leigh Graves Wolf, Michigan State University, United States
  3. Lucy Santos Green, University of South Carolina, United States
  4. Tutaleni Asino, Oklahoma State University, United States

Tuesday, March 27 4:15 PM-5:15 PM Location: Edison B View on map

No presider for this session.

Abstract: Teacher educators face the somewhat daunting task of addressing every topic from general education theory to subject- and context-specific strategies Somewhere in the middle of the preservice teacher curriculum lies discussions and applications of technology, digital footprints, diversity, and funding the 21st century classroom When the New York Times tackled the idea of teachers brand ambassadors and ethical dilemmas in a fall 2017 article, social media reacted with an uproar; Twitter chats turned sharply to discuss the issue and Facebook threads emerged to discuss the issue from different perspectives In the perfect storm of school funding cutbacks and social media access, some teachers and school librarians have mastered "The Cult of Personality," bringing about a revolution of sorts This revolution involves acquiring vendor sponsorships and developing fan bases of other teachers and librarians These professionals now resemble a sort of celebrity hybrid; part race-car driver, part salesman, and part educator From poaching professionals across schools (and levels) to filling classrooms with emerging technology, the benefits and issues surrounding this brave new world are numerous Together, we hope to engage in a critical discourse that considers how we address and study the topic of “teacher influencers” with both preservice and inservice teachers and school librarians

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