Tweet an Invasion

Events such as the adventures of Balloon Boy and the political unrest in Iran showed the power of Twitter in relaying information, factual or rumor, with the rest of the world. This past Halloween I listened to Orson Wells’ 1938 radio broadcast of War of the Worlds. Listening to this radio classic is a Halloween tradition of mine. While I was listening I grabbed my Black Berry and started tweeting the events as they unfolded on my Teacherbytes Twitter page.

When the broadcast first aired in October, 1938, it created a nation-wide panic because of the realism of the broadcast describing a Martian invasion of Earth (particularly Grovers, Mill, New Jersey). In the days before Halloween I wondered how Twitter would be used if such a broadcast could be recreated. Could anyone or group of people could create such as a panic if started with some well-planned Tweets. So when it came time listen to the broadcast I started tweeting the events. I wanted to see if anyone would bite. No one did.

After listening to and tweeting the broadcast I wondered if this could become a way of assessing student understanding of historical events, excerpts of literature, or other academic pursuits. It could be fun to see how students relay or retweet events to each other or other classes in a Twitter style of using only 140 characters. I would love to see what the tweets look like at the end of the class or day. The creativity could be amazing. This would become a lesson of explaining details in a limited space would would engage thought in the writing process. Let’s tweet the Boston Tea Party or the Shelling of Fort Sumter,