Dean Shareski

Last week Dean Shareski spoke to our EC&I 831 class about his journey to connected learning. He said he’s lucky that he’s been able to work with other teachers and administrators who “get it.” You all know what I mean. The colleagues who value new ideas and start imagining how they can make use of these ideas in their teaching. It’s great when you connect with someone who shares your vision for integrating technology into teaching and is willing to work with you. My journey to connected learning is now progressing and I feel fortunate to have connected with so many educators who share the same vision.

Dean also shared his “Five Big Ideas” for enjoying the journey to connected learning and teaching.

1. Get Personal & Selfish: Decide that you want to learn new technologies for you.

2. Develop a Professional Learning Community on Steroids: Have a networked PLC, Use an RSS reader to keep connected to relevant blogs, Compile a Delicious network, join Twitter and blog.

3. Consider Your Comm-post Rating: Find a balance between commenting and posting, comment more than you post. This blog from Intrepid Classroom has some good commenting guidelines.

4. Have Fun!

5. Share Everything!

I have been part of many conversations in the past week that involve the power of audience in blogging. Today I was part of a ustream presentation where Dean Shareski discussed the question of “Why is audience important?” I look at audience being the icing on the cake, the motivation to keep writing and the way to connect with the world outside our classroom. The thrill of getting comments to my blog posts never diminishes. I’m as excited to get comments today as I was to receive my first comment a year ago. I feel a bit like Sally Field at The Academy Awards when she cried out “You really like me!” It’s sad but true.vm_cr00309309_ss100_.jpg

Today I listened to other educators question Dean about the value of using technology in their classroom. I keep asking why do we need to convince teachers about the value of writing? Oh, I mean blogging.

Tonight after my EC&I 831 class where we were fortunate to have Dean as the presenter I started thinking about the value of audience again. After the class I checked my email and found this wonderful comment from one of my parents to her daughter.

View As Web Page Kimberly.Brown, A comment has been posted to darf’s blog entitled, Future

The comment is:

Hey Cutie, excellent writing skills. You have come such a long way in
your talent. I’m so proud of you and the way you express yourself. Your
writing makes me want to keep reading. AWESOME!!!! I love the idea of
being a “coroner”, you love to solve mysteries. I love you. Keep
writing,experiencing,following your ambitions and sharing everything.

This was such a powerful comment to read from a parent. This comment motivates her daughter to write, share and experience. The comment motivates me to continue on my quest to integrate technology in my classroom. This one comment from our audience validated a year of using my class blog.