How could I resist a tweet like this??
First, Congrats Kate on being a featured speaker at NCTM and second, I am sure there is no way you could suck! That being said here is some data for your presentation….
1. What hooked you on reading the blogs? Was it a particular post or person? Was it an initiative by the nice MTBoS folks? A colleague in your building got you into it? Desperation?
I can honestly say that until I joined Twitter last January, I had only read the occasional random blog post when looking for various lesson ideas. After an Ignite session at DCTM (Delaware Council for Teachers of Mathematics) on Twitter, I joined and now have more favorited blog posts in my account than I can keep up with! Being a 5th grade departmentalized math teacher, it is a lonely world. It is difficult finding someone who wants (and is able to) chat math, bounce lesson ideas back and forth with me, or hear about the great math things my students said that day. The blogs have opened that door to hear from people who are passionate about the same things I am. I find myself reading blog posts and nodding in agreement, laughing because I have experienced the same things, buying books I need to read, and going “OH, Why didn’t I think to ask that question?”!
2. What keeps you coming back? What’s the biggest thing you get out of reading and/or commenting?
I keep coming back because of all of reasons I am hooked. It is like a unbelievable math reality show that I cannot get enough of! I think the biggest thing I get from reading from blogs is continuous professional development. Whether I agree or disagree with what I read, I look deeper into the topics that intrigue me. When something challenges my thinking, I research and read more to deepen my understanding. It is self-guided professional development that allows me to build my own colleagues in which I surround myself.
3. If you write, why do you write? What’s the biggest thing you get out of it?
I just started writing last spring and it was a tough process. After reading so many great, open and honest posts, I was afraid mine would “fall flat” and not sound as reflective as the ones I have read. I am slowly getting over that hurdle and write when I am inspired by things my students say or do. I write to reflect and document the great things the students say/do, whether it be brilliant or misunderstandings, I find I learn from all of it. I also write because I want others to share in my excitement. I respect the math/educator opinions of the people that I follow that I would be lying to say that I don’t love it when they comment or retweet something I have blogged about….it is reaffirming to me as an educator.
4. If you chose to enter a room where I was going to talk about blogging for an hour (or however long you could stand it), what would you hope to be hearing from me? MTBoS cheerleading and/or tourism? How-to’s? Stories?
I think as a current (more novice than experienced) blogger, I would love to hear about the challenges new bloggers face…open and honest. There are issues that I think I would like to hear addressed by an experienced blogger: When you work for a school district in which people read your post, I feel it puts some limitations on what you can blog, is that true? Some posts elicit comments more than others, what makes that happen? What has been your best experience with a blog post? Worst experience?
I think the hardest thing will be addressing the various needs in the room. There will be people who have been blogging and others who have not started! I know people like to be engaged, so maybe examining a few blogs together as a group, chatting at tables about things you notice/wonder would get all levels involved?
Good Luck! I will be at NCTM as well, so I hope to be at your session! Can’t Wait!