Monday, February 26, 2018

Put Yourself Out There!

Put yourself out there! That is easier said than done as I have found out. The thought of blogging actually made me a little nauseous...and that is not an exaggeration. I have started 3 different blogs on 3 different blog sites, the first couple I never posted or told anyone about so they sit with literally zero views. That worked for me, because I felt like I had tried and that was good enough. I have spent the last year reading every book I can to help me be a better educator and once again I felt like at least I am trying. Only now, that I have committed to really blogging and focusing on myself as a learner can I say I get it! I didn't get here on my own though. The process was pretty eye opening. I reached out for help and became the student. When one asks George Couros for help and he says blog...there is no other choice but to blog. Since I felt like I asked for the help I had to follow through no matter how much I wanted to say forget it! The stages I went through surprised me a little. I was nervous and anxious just like what I see in my students when they are asked to do something uncomfortable. When I would ask questions I did not get direct answers just more things to think about, which is what I have come to understand is how we can spark curiosity and ownership in learning in our students. As I lost sleep and needed constant reassurance I decided it was time to make the leap and really put myself out there. I finished my first blog and shared it not knowing what to expect. When I saw that it was retweeted and the amount of views it made me sick at exaggeration. Once that feeling past I began to feel like I can do this and started to wonder what else I was capable of. I realized that my unpublished blogs and huge amount of reading wasn't enough. I have thought more about my relationship with my students, colleagues and myself, which has forced me to really look at how I can do better. What I have learned through this process is I want to give my students what my teacher (George) gave to me. Spark curiosity, stand beside them and watch amazing things happen.

As I watched George, Katie and A.J. during IMMOOC I am even more inspired to commit to the process of reflecting and getting out there. As I post on my blog and on twitter I put myself in a position for criticism. Our grade level has made changes and we have definitely put ourselves in a position for criticism. I am fortunate enough to have a group of supporters who remind me the risk is worth it, because I am doing what is best for my learners.

I loved the question during IMMOOC about what we can do tomorrow. Talk to kids! Give them choice! This year my team has taken the leap to give kids choices, which was pretty scary at first. That would be tough if we didn't talk to kids and get to really know them. Empowering them with choice and in their learning has been amazing to be a part of. I finally understand what was meant when I heard the phrase "student led". We have so much more to do, but that shift has been so incredible for us as teachers as well as for the students.

I am looking forward to the next 6 weeks as I push myself to even more uncomfortableness with the goal of being so much better for my kids! I am so grateful to have the opportunity to learn from some people I admire so much for what they do for education. There is a lot to learn from George, Katie, A.J. and John and I cannot wait to see where this journey takes me.

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