“Want to instantly create better teachers? I know how. One word. Blogging.,,If you look at the promise of Professional Learning Communities that our schools have invested thousands, more likely millions to achieve, blogs accomplish much of the same things. The basic idea of the PLC is to have teachers share practice/data and work in teams to make improvements. A good blog does this and more. While the data may not be school specific, great bloggers know how to share data and experience that is both relevant and universal so any reader can contribute and create discussion.”
I truly believe that blogging has made me a better teacher.
By sharing ideas with others, I have been able to have a conversation that improved the original idea. I was able to fine tune the specifics so that I can be more effective in the classroom.
Through blogging, I am able to explain why I am acting in a certain way. I can base it on research or I can base it on instinct, but either way, I am able to share my reasons for my actions. Without knowing my reasons, I am blindly moving forward with little or no thought and this can not be in the best interest of my students.
Allowing comments means opening myself up to criticism. This was the hardest thing for me but it also helped me clarify my actions better. Maybe I didn’t explain myself clearly or maybe I needed to rethink my philosophy. Either way, these comments could only improve on the effectiveness of my teaching.
In order to be a better blogger, I find myself reading many other blogs. I look at their style and the way they impart information and try to determine what I liked about the style. This is how I want my blog to feel when others read mine. I also learn what topics are being shared and what others are talking about. By reading other blogs, I am able to form my own opinion about what I feel is important. I also may learn about things that work in other classrooms and how I can adapt that into my own classroom. In turn, I may also learn from others’ mistakes so that I do not make the same ones in my classroom.
Encouraging others to interact through my blog is important. It is this two way conversation that makes my blog more than just a thing to read. Others may gain information from reading it but I also gain information from the questions and comments that are given.
I feel that blogging is so important that I require those who take my university courses to blog as part of the curriculum. I hope that I can begin them on a journey that will be useful to them in their own ventures into teaching. At the time, my students may be overwhelmed with all the work that is required of them and may even stop once the class is over. Yet, I am hoping that once they have been given a taste of this, they will have the foundation to come back to it. I am hoping that they will see how this can be one of the most important things they do for professional development.
How do you feel about blogging? Do you think that it helps to make better teachers? Why or why not?
Posted on the Successful Teaching Blog by loonyhiker (successfulteaching at gmail dot com).
Original image: 'I'm blogging this.'
http://www.flickr.com/photos/51035655711@N01/24720422 by: Jhayne