The Xmas Factor 2011

Let me share with you a Twitter conversation that transpired between Kevin McLaughlin and myself a few days ago. It all came about after Kevin tweeted about the 3D snowflakes he had made with his class. The 3D snowflake buzz caught on quickly and many primary tweechers found themselves making these beautiful decorations in the days that followed, myself included…

OhLottie: Today was our turn at the new Twitter xmas tradition started by @kvnmcl 🙂

kvnmcl: @OhLottie Wow! They are fantastic! Have I started something 🙂 My class will use colours next year too

OhLottie: @kvnmcl The colours were due to a lack of blue paper so our snowflakes became stars + generic Xmas decs 😉 You’ve def started something!

kvnmcl: @OhLottie I’ll make sure to start it up officially next Christmas then 🙂

OhLottie: @kvnmcl I’m feeling an Xmas decoration tweet-off… 🙂

kvnmcl: @OhLottie Excellent idea, there’s potential for a christmas deco tweet off!

OhLottie: @kvnmcl Think it could be great! Different categories: best star, best fairy, snowflake etc etc etc 😉

kvnmcl: @OhLottie Great idea, it’ll be a showcase of creative talent. Plan it for next year?

kvnmcl: @TomSale Looks like we’re organising the first ever Twitter Christmas Decoration Tweet off for next year @OhLottie has the plans!

And so dear tweechers, The Xmas Factor 2011 was born – a worldwide Christmas decoration competition for schools! To say it’s in its early days is somewhat of an understatement, but the ball (bauble?) is definitely rolling.

From a few initial tweets, we’re imagining that The Xmas Factor 2011 will coincide nicely with The X Factor in the run up to Christmas next year. We’ll base the format loosely on The X Factor and have judges/mentors and public votes, e.g. a poll or similar so all participating schools/classes get to cast their vote. Kevin suggested live voting after Skype video calls where children do demos of how to make their Christmas creation. I like this idea a lot. If that’s not possible, then perhaps just video demos. There could be various categories such as the type of decoration or just by year group – there could also be a teacher category too so we get in on the fun?! The best designs from each category would go through to the next stage until they reach The Xmas Factor final!

Now, there are a lot of details to fill in such as how long it will run for and just how on earth we’ll organise it all, but if you are keen in theory, it would be great to hear from you. Plus if you have any ideas you’d like to throw into the pot, please do! Just leave a comment and tweet about it using the #XmasFactor2011 hash tag.

Merry Christmas!


  • Thanks for posting this Claire. It demonstrates again how the use of a social network can help tease out the beginnings of a large collaborative project. This idea started small but caught on quite rapidly, and even though it’s Christmas 2010 I’m already looking forward to the myriad of learning and teaching possibilities #xmasfactor2011 will bring to everyone involved.

    • Thanks, Kevin. As I was typing it up I was thinking to myself, ‘this is exactly why I love Twitter!’ I’m looking forward to it too and hoping it becomes as collaborative as possible.

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