Why I Blog… for @k8nowak
I took some time last week to scroll through my own blog and could not believe some of my old posts. I hardly recognized my own words. I am definitely not the same educator or the same person I was when I started this blog over three years ago. I have changed. My job has changed. Education has changed. Kate Nowak played such an integral role in starting me on the path to blogging so I wanted to respond to her request:
1. What hooked you on reading the blogs? Was it a particular post or person? Was it an initiative by the nice MTBoS folks? A colleague in your building got you into it? Desperation?
Dan Meyer. I found Dan Meyer one summer through desperation. My principal asked me to serve as department chair and I felt so unworthy. I had a 25% failure rate in my classroom. I had students who hated my class and did not see the purpose in being there. From Dan’s blog I found Kate’s and Sam’s. All of these blogs showed a passion for teaching I had never seen or experienced before. I wanted to be a part.
2. What keeps you coming back? What’s the biggest thing you get out of reading and/or commenting?
Teaching is hard. It is rewarding, but hard. I see teachers everyday struggle and cry. I see teachers leave their rooms in joy with the desire to share their successes and I see them hang their heads and want to hide from their failures. I see how overwhelmed some of them are with all of the changes Common Core is bringing. It is more necessary now to build a free community of resources and support for teachers. We can not and should not do this alone. If what I write or say can help even one teacher, then it is worth my time.
3. If you write, why do you write? What’s the biggest thing you get out of it?
I started writing as a window into my classroom. I wanted to share what worked and what failed. I now work at the district level and have access to hundreds of classrooms. This is a huge responsibility and honor. I feel like writing about these experiences gives me the opportunity to share to a larger audience. I write to push myself. Right now, I found myself going off on a tangent (I deleted it) and started writing an I wish I would have when I was in the class room list… That will be a later blog post. This just goes to show that blog writing forces me to reflect and push myself to improve. It really is a selfish exercise.
4. If you chose to enter a room where I was going to talk about blogging for an hour (or however long you could stand it), what would you hope to be hearing from me? MTBoS cheerleading and/or tourism? How-to’s? Stories?
I would love to hear the nuts and bolts of how to start a blog. Also, how to handle reading blogs and not get overwhelmed. I remember a time when I wanted to just shut down because I could never get caught up with my blog reading or what I wanted to write about. Baby steps… Oh yeah, and twitter. Twitter and blogging go hand in hand.