I’m not a blogger….yet!

Keep Calm and Blog onAm I really doing this… starting my own blog?  That was my first response to this idea.  And yet, after thinking about it further, it isn’t too hard to believe as I am truly immersed in technology in so much of what I do as a teacher.  Regardless, I still am a bit uncertain about where this blogging journey will take me.  You see, I am a planner!  I like to organize and account for the beginning, the middle, and of course the end.  Herein lies my uncertainty.  I don’t know where my first post is going to take me…. or where the idea for the next post will come from – yet!

After attending the first face-to-face session of Cohort 21, I was excited to see how we are planning to use technology to extend our learning as well as our collaboration in this year-long PD experience.  I was especially struck by the functionality of Diigo and so I introduced it as a key component of the research process in some of my senior classes.  At first my students were a bit uncertain — perhaps they did not know where this tool would take them.  Perhaps they also didn’t see the entire picture – yet.   And so, we explored together.

I am happy to say that we are loving the personalized nature of Diigo in enabling individualized research with accountability to sourcing and referencing as a part of the entire process.  Asking for feedback on this tool, one of my students explained that Diigo has changed how she is able to look at a website with an eye for referencing information and has made this process personally useful to her overall learning.  What a great connection — one that we may have missed if we hadn’t taken the risk of trying something new together.

YetThe idea of ‘yet’ is quickly becoming a key word (at my school) that illustrates the growth mindset and willingness to be open to new ideas.  In exploring Diigo with me, my students demonstrated their mindset to try new things.  They weren’t sure where the learning would take them, but they were willing to try.  It turns out, they just didn’t know – yet!

And so, I am taking this journey of exploration into teaching and learning without knowing where it will lead me…yet.  I am also excited about blogging about it all, even if I don’t know the ideas or details of my next, and subsequent posts…yet.  Without taking the risk, I’d never see the end results of this journey.


7 comments to “I’m not a blogger….yet!”
  1. I love the “idea of ‘yet'” that you’ve addressed in this post, and as Justin and Meg point out, I think that taking that risk is the beginning of an incredible journey that you may not know where it will end (if ever!).

    You’ll be excited about the upcoming F2F as you will be introduced and then given time to explore three different frameworks for helping to chart your journey. SAMR, TIM and TPACK are all crazy acronyms that stand for stuff. The stuff being different lenses through which to view, explore, evaluate and develop the use of EdTech in your professional development, your classroom and your school.

    Looking forward to seeing you there!

  2. Hi Christina,
    I also had some trepidation about starting to blog. Adding to my own uncertainty was a colleague who said he thought blogging seemed narcissistic! Yikes! While I’m still not completely convinced, I do value the experience of putting my reflections out there and being pushed to clarify my values and perspective by readers.
    As for the uncertainty and need for planning… I hear you. A lot of these ideas about EdTech have been rolling around my brain for years. It can seem so messy. But I’ve learned lately that sometimes we just have to take the risk and be prepared to fail. Isn’t it cool that we Cohort 21’ers have each other to pick us up and dust us off when we do? Using these platforms to develop our PLNs means that we have a community to rely on. Too cool. I think this may be just what I needed in order to jump into the unknown.
    Looking forward to our F2F next weekend!

  3. Christina,
    What a wonderful articulation of the the value of “risk taking” not only for yourself but modelling it for your students. You are not alone in thoughts and feelings around these new learning tools. Reading through many of the recent posts confirms this. The second face 2 face will clear some of this up and solidify so of your thinking. See you next Saturday!

    • Thanks, Justin! I am thankful for the opportunity to be reminded of what it is like to experience new technology and learning experiences as it is key to being mindful of how students feel in these moments during their learning experience.

      I am truly looking forward to our next session. See you then!

  4. Hi Christina,
    I love your approach to teaching, in that it’s a journey and that you don’t know, always, where you’re going to end up. I think it’s a great way to role model to students, authentically, that it’s okay to not have all the answers, or to not know exactly where you’re going.
    Using the word ‘yet’ is something I’ve been adding to my teaching vocabulary, especially when giving ‘for’ assessment, and I think it’s very positively changing students’ attitudes that I believe they can get there if they continue working at it. They begin to believe it to.
    The philosophical, devil’s advocate side of myself feels there’s one challenge with the word ‘yet,’ though, because it does imply that we will get there. What happens when we do? Is that it? Are we all done? Learning complete? Check? These are questions I ask myself. Because then, the learning journey is over. Door closed.
    You ended by saying,”Without taking the risk, I’d never see the end results of this journey.” Do you believe there’s an end to the learning journey? Do you think the word ‘yet’ can close the learning door when someone does master a skill or learning?
    Philosophical me would love to hear people’s thoughts about the word ‘yet.’
    Keep exploring!

    • Hi Meg,

      Thanks for your thoughtful reply! I agree that the word yet can imply an ending or destination in the learning experience. I see it a bit differently. As part of the conversation about ‘yet’, I openly talk with my students about being a life-long learner — what that means, looks like, and feels like. I share that this is who I am as an educator, parent and person. I think that this ongoing conversation brings more context to the word ‘yet’ as it allows students to develop an understanding that there is no end to the journey. There may be an end to a unit or topic of study, in large part because the class ends or the course must progress to an end point, but I often ask my students where would they like to go next in their learning so that they can see how the learning continues, and where their personal interest can take them next. I hope this ongoing dialogue illustrates the life-long commitment that is at the heart of a genuine interest in learning.

      Is that how you interpret using ‘yet’ in your teaching, Meg? Do you find students are able to make this connection between the idea of yet and developing into a life-long learner?

      Thanks again for your reply.

      • Hi Christina,
        Thanks for your reply. I should probably have more conversations with my students about the cycle of learning, the word ‘yet’, and developing habits of life-long learning. We’ve been having lots of discussions about how we learn, in general and specifically as individuals, and developing good habits. But I think the attitude of learning is something I can help them develop further. Looking forward to chatting on Saturday!

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