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As part of National Teacher Appreciation Day, which is on May 4th, Facebook Messenger has launched a new initiative to honor teachers’ efforts.

As Facebook points out, teachers have had an increasingly difficult task in the last year, working to re-configure their processes into online learning while also adapting and developing knowledge of entirely new systems in order to meet COVID-related requirements.

This has flipped their entire lesson plans on their heads, and teachers have had to maintain individual student care via video links, as well as establish new connections with parents.

Facebook is now allowing users to commend those efforts.

As explained by Messenger:

“Messenger Rooms is working with Say It Now, an organization that helps people conduct “Living Tributes” honoring those who have impacted their lives the most. The mutual goal is to encourage people all over to set up Virtual Living Tributes for the teachers that have made a difference in their lives.”

Messenger New Initiative
Image Source: iDea Huntr

In essence, Facebook is encouraging users to create tributes to teachers who have had a positive impact on their lives by using Messenger Rooms, where current and former students can come together to express their gratitude.

“The group video call can be scheduled in advance and created directly in Messenger or Facebook. Anyone can join via the link, even if they don’t have a Facebook account. Rooms hold up to 50 people with no time limit, so the tribute doesn’t need to be rushed and can include a small or large group.”

Say it Now essentially serves as a resource and guide in this regard, with a number of steps that users can take to create a meaningful and lasting personal tribute:

  1. Identify the teacher – Once you’ve identified the teacher you would like to honor with a Virtual Living Tribute, reach out to them to ask if they would be comfortable with being honored. Say it Now has a template to reach out to them. 
  2. Reach out to potential participants – Reach out to others who may have been impacted by the teacher and lock in the core group participating. Say it Now has a template to reach out to them, too.
  3. Schedule the Virtual Living Tribute – Scheduling a Messenger Room for a future date and time is easy.  You can do this directly in Messenger or Facebook. 
  4. Share the Details – Send the Rooms link, date, and time to those participating. Anyone can join via the link, even if they don’t have a Facebook account. 
  5. Conduct the tribute – This part is fun. Visit the Say it Now website for inspiration and ideas.
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So, in essence, it’s all about using Messenger Rooms, with Say it Now providing advice and guidance based on its experience to help users run the best teacher tribute possible.

Given the past year’s effects, it’s a good initiative, and it could lead to more people thinking about how teachers and mentors have influenced their lives, and how that has helped them improve and achieve better outcomes.

While one-on-one expressions of gratitude are extremely meaningful, Say it Now claims that “group gratitude is a uniquely powerful experience for the person being celebrated.” Although this comes as no surprise, it does highlight the potential value of Messenger rooms as a vehicle for such, as well as a good prompt to encourage participation.

It could also serve as a catalyst for more people to talk about teachers and their effects, which could be relevant to your marketing plans.

Source: Social Media Today

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