Social Media Monitoring

Last week I posted about Denis Masseni’s report “Why Schools are Spooked by Social Media.”

An interesting component of this report was on social media monitoring. That is, monitoring the internet for mentions of a particular keyword (such as your school). This is a good way to take defensive action if negative mentions occur and to keep tab of positive mentions.

In his report, Denis described two free online applications that allow you to search the internet for any reference of your keyword.

Social Mention (

social mention

Social Mention can scan a range of social media outlets such as blogs, comments, images, videos, audio etc.

When you search a keyword, along with your results of mentions on the internet, you get a display of sentiment. That is, what percentage of occurrences are positive and what percentage are negative. It uses a linguistics processing tool to analyse the words and phrases for positive and negative language.

Social mention also provides information on who the top users are of your keyword search. Interestingly, for my school (Leopold Primary School) that was me!

This tool is popular with businesses and also members of the wider community who want to keep track of a certain topic. Give it a try.

The second social media monitoring tool that Denis mentioned in his report was,

Google Alerts (

google alerts

Google Alerts are email updates of the latest relevant Google results (web, news, etc.) based on your choice of query or topic. You simply type in your keyword, select what you want to search and when you want to be emailed.

Whether or not schools are using social medias themselves, it seems that it would be a good idea for schools to have these social media monitoring tools in place. They are a good way to nip any problems that occur in the bud and monitor what your students are doing in cyberspace.

Do you use social monitoring?

How do you think social monitoring should be used?

Cyber Safety and Young Students

Teaching cyber safety is an important aspect of all technology teaching. With my Grade Two students, I try to discuss aspects of cyber safety while using the Internet on the interactive whiteboard (IWB) and I have found blogging to be an excellent avenue to teach young students about appropriate online behaviours.

All my students know not to publish their surnames or reveal other personal information about themselves including passwords. They also know that what they publish on the Internet is forever and can’t be taken back. My students are becoming aware of correct netiquette.

From the discussions I’ve had with my students who are 7 and 8 years old, it seems that they are only beginning to explore the Internet independently at home. I therefore feel that it would be a opportune time to teach my students more about cyber safety before they become involved in using technology such as social networking, instant messaging and mobile phones more broadly.

I have decided to use some of the fantstic online resources on the IWB with my students to teach some lessons specifically targetting cyber safety issues. I thought a good way to open these lessons would be to ask the students exactly what they do on the Internet and how much access to the Internet do they have.

Some sites that include videos, games, professional development, activities and lessons about cyber safety issues include

While it is important to provide education to the students about cyber safety it is also important to provide parent education and I will look at doing this through a parent newsletter. I may even have the students create or contribute to the newsletter as I find student participation usually encourages more parent interest.

This poster is from the Cybersmart website and has some good tips which could be taught to students and displayed in your classroom.

cyber poster

Do you know any other good websites for teaching about cyber safety? How do you approach cyber safety in the classroom?