The initial spark

I’ve contemplated starting a blog for several months.  It all began with a professional development session I attended with George Couros on why educators should have blogs this past fall.  I remember feeling inspired and leaving the session thinking “I have to do this!”

I began exploring more blogs, voraciously reading what other educators had posted and the self-doubt began to set in.  I have always enjoyed writing but I stress about the publishing aspect.  I panic when I think of others reading and judging what I have written. Thoughts and panic invade my brain:  What if my grammar is incorrect?  I know I’m comma happy. Have I used too many incorrectly?  Will people stop reading my writing because of errors?  What will readers think of what I have written?  Will they all hate it?

I finished a second graduate degree about two years ago and have missed the formalized reflective assignments over my learning.  I embrace my nerdy tendencies and will admit I LOVE to synthesize my learning through writing.  After reading new things, I will often write reflections over my learning and my ideas for implementation (I just don’t share them).  What finally pushed me past the fear?  Honestly, it was a combination of things.  The previously mentioned PD inspired me…but it wasn’t enough.  I needed a few more things to happen:

  • A second calling – My school district began to offer a free platform for blogging and as a Consulting Teacher (many places would call my role an Instructional Coach), I felt compelled to explore the inner workings of the site.  If I understood how it worked, I would be able to include it in my toolbox of ideas to help other teachers refine their craft.
  • Encouragement to move beyond the fear – I was perusing my PLN on Twitter over lunch one day and stumbled upon a tweet sharing a writing resource for students.  My school district has implemented writing across the curriculum so I am always looking for new resources for teachers related to writing.  Thanks to Pixar and Khan Academy, I walked away with a lesson of my own: Everyone is a storyteller.  Why should I let my fear sideline me from having a blog?
  • A fond remembrance – I recently moved and as I was purging my belongings I stumbled across a ratty spiral bound notebook that had clearly seen better days.  Inside were several poorly developed stories (often centering around friendship or how toys had come to life)  and the rambling thoughts of an elementary schooler.  When I was in elementary school (circa 1987) I was in a voluntary “writer’s club”.  I would come to school early with several of my fellow classmates to write.  Every few weeks we would pick something we had written and share it with the group.  If I was unafraid to share at age seven, why thirty years later do I allow fear to stop me?

It was a perfect storm.  Each time the thought popped back into my head a new puzzle piece fell into place until finally I am here, blogging.

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