It's been a few days since I last blogged and I've been wanting to get a few ideas that have been buzzing around in my head onto Teaching Generation Z. One issue that keeps coming back to my brain is how hard it is to sell the concept of blogging to fellow staff members. The members of the ActivBoarding blog have seen first hand the potential of using blogging as a reflective tool, a place to link resources for common use, a way of sharing experiences as they happen - our own little learning community. However, ninety per cent of the contributions come from me. I don't mind taking the lead here for my staff but somehow they haven't quite got the bug to get on board. I get a lot of comments like:
"I must get into this blogging soon."
"Where do you find the time?"
(And the reply,''You make the time if it is important to you." doesn't go down too well.)
"I've got too many things on at the moment. I'll make a start when things calm down a bit."
So, how do I get the message across that you need to wrap this all up with what you do to make it really work. It's not an extra on top of everything - well, maybe it is but I reckon the old adage of good things being worth working for are true. Maybe I'm expecting too much. Maybe I've started the wrong way around. Steve, from Teach 42, suggests starting teachers off with Bloglines with pre-chosen blogs in place.
" I’d even recommend setting up a group of great blogs, both educational and non-educational (I love getting Dilbert in Bloglines), and importing them into Bloglines for their teachers. Make it so all they have to do is go there, get their information and leave. Make it as simple as possible for them until they have their feet wet, see the value in it and have a desire to learn more."
Maybe I'm just not ready to be dispensing advice on how to create the time to get involved in blogging. I just know I am embarking on the greatest professional development of 18 years teaching and sometimes feel like I'm arriving well after the party has started. But for the sake of our students, teachers have to get involved in the regular use of new technologies and connect to others to experience the wealth of collective learning opportunities. I know that one can blog on any topic but for educators, this is the ultimate way to get a world perspective. I think I will have to try and lead by example, maintain this blog to the highest standard I am capable of, comment regularly on other blogs' posts of relevance (see Blogmenting - a great post from Alan Levine), continue to service my little Interactive Whiteboard community on their blog (surely someone else will post other than me!) and talk up blogging in the staffroom, at district meetings and everywhere else that I can. As Jo McLeay recently commented:
"I would love to get more Aussie teachers using blogs just so I have more people to learn from and with, and because I think it is an interesting thing to do. It is true that we are on a journey and there are things we need to figure out, but we can figure them out together."