1. Right now, I am experiencing anxiety because I have not posted on my blog in TOO LONG. But this happens at the beginning of every year as I settle in to new students, new courses, new clubs and waking up too early. I can't be a good teacher if I am not a good learner, and since I teaching writing, then I gotta write. Can't wait for October…..anyone who does not understand the worth of time spent learning is missing the best part of being a teacher. Great post.

  2. Kendra Orris

    I completely agree with what you said in your opening paragraph. For me, I find that my blog is one of the most helpful tools when it comes to reflecting on what I have been doing in the classroom. I am a firm believer in that reflection as a teacher can only help to make you a more effective, passionate teacher…and what better way to do that than in a blog?

    I am really happy to hear that you enjoyed my research and post on Pokemon. 🙂 Thank you for the kind words regarding my latest blog posts!

  3. Awesome post, as a pre-service teacher I'm finding the world of social networking has blown my mind in terms of learning. The other bonus is that I'm now being referred to job openings because people reading my blog know I'm looking for work.

  4. I don't always have time to cover current things in my posts but I do enjoy reflecting on my teaching or on things going on in my classroom. Has this made me a better teacher? Not sure. But most "experts" want you to reflect and if that is the standard then I must be awesome! Enjoyed this post.

  5. Landon O'Hara

    In the past, University and my 1st couple years of teaching, I have been told that one of my strong skills is reflection. I began a blog last year and only posted once! I was afraid that what I had to say was neither interesting or groundbreaking. Well, it’s time to stop being so self-conscious and make a change. Thanks George.

  6. Great post and I totally agree.
    I have posted a couple of blogs, but I have promised myself more after feeling really good after my last. Once I hit post I realised how much I had seriously thought about the issue – more than a fleeting thought between classes, and realised that there was a real sense of understanding of myself. I will definitely continue and hope that the act ensures more reflection on my part (and hopefully some good ideas from others along the way)!

  7. I agree with your post about the value of using blogging as a reflective exercise. I'm taking tentative steps trying to use PBL with my students. It's slow going but I'm trying to be as transparent as possible—writing posts along the way. I share my triumphs, my new revelations and my failures. I also post the questions that I have to raise for myself along the way. The act of writing brings clarity to my thinking and I appreciate all that offer me encouragement and ideas along the way.
    I've been teaching for years but this is my first big revision to my teaching approach in years. So the blog is where I'm working all that out.

    Come and see what you think. http://teachingtechie.typepad.com

    • Paul George

      I applaud you for your courage to revise your approach to teaching. Just because "we've always done it that way" or "we've taught for x-numder of years" doesn't mean it's best for kids!

  8. Paul George

    Does your division have standards or regs on blogging? To what tools are you steering your teachers to start blogging?

    I often hear teachers complain that schedules don't allow them to plan together. Valid concern and we must improve at facilitating that, but blogs allow teachers to benefit fom their colleagues' thinking and reflections not only in the same building, but same district, state, country, world when their own schedule permits! And how about a Blog Club in place of the traditional Book Club? Let's follow a blog and get together to discuss further, either face-to-face or virtually.

  9. Some very good thoughts here and I am in agreement with the need for teachers to blog as a reflection on their practice. Like Leslie said though, I too have not posted in a long time, but it is not for the lack of writing.
    I often find that it is the posts I don't publish that have the greatest benefit to my personal practice. Sometimes just needing an outlet, and reflecting on things when I write. It stirs up new ideas and makes me think about what went well, or what I could work on in lessons, and in my own learning. I just have to get better at putting these things out to receive feedback etc.

  10. RJK

    Great blog! I think that blogging is a great idea for teachers. I think "pretired" teachers should all blog as well and share their wealth of experiences. I also think that we as a country ought to figure out how to take the wealth of retired teachers and their experiences to add to the "mentoring" of newer teachers as we can all collectively learn from each other!

  11. Showick Thorpe

    It's is really awesome to read your article and ponder on how true some of the things you wrote about could be. I am sure blogs or articles by tutors allow them a platform from where they can connect, overview and learn more thereby helping them bringing edge to their teaching style.

  12. Thanks for the comments and the original blog post. It is so true that teachers learning from their own reflection and from others is incredibly critical to the profession today. When teachers move away from the contraints that are so in the forefront and get back to talking about what helps children learn successfully and develop a life-loan approach to learning. I also suffer from the "I can't seem to find time" for my blog for teachers (lightthesparkofliteracy.blogspot.com/) but I'm determined to keep at it.

  13. Thanks for the virtual kick in the pants, George. I've followed you on Twitter and have been lurking on the fringes of the blogging world for entirely too long. I may not post all of the time, but I think I need to make my thinking and learning more transparent and join the conversation. I might not be a daily or even weekly poster, but I feel like committing myself to my practice will help me and my students in the long run. (@ckervina on Twitter)

  14. At first, I was insecure about putting my writing where my colleagues could see it. Somehow, writing to unknown teachers in the blogosphere seemed safer. I wonder why.

    My colleagues have found me (blog to twitter to LinkedIn feeds ratted me out). I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the positive response.

    Janet | expateducator.com

  15. Mike

    What are the expectations for 'teacher' blogs (timeliness – length – content….)? I am fascinated by professional blogs and learn a great deal from them. I also fully buy into the reflective practice component of teacher improvement. One area of concern however is this notion that 'good teachers blog and if you don't blog you aren't a good teacher'. I personally know a number of great teachers who won't blog. They share in other ways – professional conversations, assuming mentor or leadership roles in schools etc, but they won't blog. Let me clarify – they have classroom blogs – communication tools for parents and learning platforms for their s's, but they don't write about their experiences, worries, thoughts about teaching. In conversation I've noted that some of these teachers have great respect for the written word and don't have the time or energy after being uber teachers to commit to a professional blog – which they see as akin to professional writing; is it? From another perspective in regards to putting a large amount of yourself, your time and effort into blogging is the 'foreverness' of the internet; can putting yourself out there professionally cause you as much or more damage as putting yourself out there socially (Facebook etc…) on the opposite spectrum- does blogging become less authentic and more of a personally crafted resume piece? Some people just aren't writers – but they are great teachers; will pressure to blog drive them away from the profession?

  16. kurtishewson

    Great post! I'm actually sharing a presentation with Faculty of Education students regarding actions to consider now to get hired later (http://kurtishewson.wordpress.com/2011/09/30/top-things-you-may-not-have-considered-when-seeking-a-teaching-position/) and encouraging students to start a blog now, reflecting on their learning and early teaching experiences. Blogging is an excellent vehicle for reflection and processing the incredibly complex process of teaching and learning.

  17. Galen Bartamian

    I had success using writingscore.com for an essay I needed to hand in last minute. I actually got a pretty good grade if I remember correctly lol. What are some other good writing services you guys have success with?

  18. nilima

    this is an interesting idea! However, I wonder how much time do we actually get from our frenzied lives to actually follow or create blogs with something really insightful.

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  20. Reflection is always a good reason to write, and knowing it will be visible to thousands sure forces us to write with more care. But what many teachers don't know is that optimizing a blog, and learning even just a little more about the technical side of it can really boost your readership, which in turn greatly improves motivation to continue writing and expanding the blog.

    Something as basic as using a great title and adding some keywords in the URL really can improve your chances of getting picked up by the larger fish in the blogo-sphere. Keeping widgets to a minimum. Categorizing and using keywords correctly. There many of these little, simple to apply, techniques that can make a big difference. I encourage exploring and connecting to other bloggers to learn more of this technical side.

  21. Nice post. I learn something totally new and challenging on sites I stumbleupon on a daily basis. It will always be useful to read articles from other authors and practice a little something from their web sites.

  22. I have discovered some new items from your web page about computers. Another thing I have always thought is that computer systems have become a product that each home must have for several reasons. They provide convenient ways to organize the home, pay bills, shop, study, tune in to music and perhaps watch television shows. An innovative way to complete all of these tasks is a laptop. These personal computers are mobile ones, small, potent and convenient.

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  24. That's a great attitude, I hope the incoming comments and suggestions are equally positive. I know I've said it in person, but for anyone reading the comments, its awesome!

  25. Luke

    With the use of the class iPad and Kids Blog, I am now passing the classroom blog over to the class. Guess my personal learning blog is the next scary step

  26. rickettsk

    Blogging is, I think, in part about being reflective and engaging in the conversation. As such, one need not hastily sign up with WordPress, but just get into the conversation–read, think, reflect, reply, join the thread. Go and do; return with news of your results. Repeat. I don't have to have a blog in order for my classroom practice to be fundamentally influenced. I need to be part of the dialogue.

  27. Gabor

    This is the post that made start blogging today. I'm an elementary teacher, and I completely agree with you, and hope to be able to join the sharing and learning.

  28. It was great to read your blogpost. I am relatively new to blogging and have been asked by several people why I am doing it. I think I do it to improve my teaching. As I create my units, I continually check the standards and try to make activities that will engage my students and keep learning fun. Blogging is a great way for me to keep track of what I am doing. Also, I think it will help me in the future because it will be right at my fingertips!

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