Kim is writing powerfully about her practice, and a few days ago she posted this:
Hereâ€™s the amazing thing about blogging for me. When I go home to my family or talk to friends, noone really wants to talk about education, or my ideas, or drop out prevention, or student achievement. Mystandard response to â€œhow was your day?â€ is â€œgreatâ€ and thatâ€™s about it. But I still have my students, school and itâ€™s challenges swirling around in my head a substantial percentage of the time. So now I find blogging and itâ€™s an instant connection to others who are interested in the same thing.
Amen. How many people have passions that they can’t share because they are too esoteric or because geography separates them from others who share it? This is about connection in so many ways, on so many levels, but none more profound than the one that brings us to meet via our ideas in this virtual space. It’s so very cool, and so very powerful when you think that just a few years ago it, for all intents, couldn’t be done. That is what makes not having the time to read and write so frustrating…the connection weakens.
technorati tags:blogging, education, connective_learning
Couldn’t have said it better myself!
Thank you for the encouragement Will. I’ve tried to express in my posts just how much blogging has helped my own professional “thinking”. Writing about difficult situations also helps get the difficult thing out of my head and down in a post so I can stop thinking about it so much. I’ve never really written other than my professional communications, so maybe I needed to discover this years ago.
Hoping to stop over while you’re in Ellicottville again next week. Can you write another book that details “how to” answers? Where do I get that info? Hoping to ask you a few questions about the “how to” when I see you. Hey–did you notice I’m getting subscribers?!
This is so true! And so well written. So much of teaching is a solitary struggle that sometimes it is easy to forget that the community of teachers, and just talking about what we do, can make so much difference in our methods and convictions. It’s fantastic, and powerful, that more and more teachers are discovering the web as a way to expand our network of professional connections.
As I am immersing myself in blogs and wikis and the rest, I find myself having to confront the isolation that seems to go with teaching. Both the good parts (the automony) and the bad (working in a silo).
I am trying to use blogging to break this apart. It is great to have partners in doing this.
Andrew Pass says
I couldn’t agree more. When I first left grad. school I was upset because I didn’t think that I’d have anybody to bounce ideas around with. However, the blogosphere serves as a great community for this purpose. I can only imagine that teachers who blog are better teachers than they would otherwise be, because they develop ideas online and can bring them into the classroom. Wouldn’t it be incredible if we could work out a way to get Continuing Education Units for blogging.
I agree with Andrew in that during my administrative coursework we had a cohort who progressed through the program together. Our instructor, Janeil Rey, really believed in collaborative learning. I had to think and write about important issues, followed by reflection and discussion. I also enjoyed Janeil’s feedback. Sound like blogging? So, I called the Dean of Education at our local university this week to talk about blogging and to suggest that he get his teacher candidates moving in this direction. That would be a great way for our new teachers to key in.
you may feel that the connection is weaker when you don’t have the time to read or write blogs, but remember that you personally are already so far ahead of the vast majority that you’re not losing the ground that it may feel like. The connection is still there for when you have time to catch up.
I actually wonder if blogging is something that only works for people whose brains work a particular way. It clearly works for you and empowers you in an incredible way, but maybe not for everyone. The connectedness part is clearly the key – but what if someone’s blog is not widely read and they’re not getting many comments? How valuable is their blog to them? What’s the point? Can they get just as much out of not having their own personal blog but simply reading and commenting on a variety of other people’s blogs?