It may be a guilty pleasure, but I really like the tv show Supernatural. Not gonna lie, the music and the car are big draws, but the general theme of a never ending journey strikes a chord more than anything else.
Each season starts and ends with a classic rock covered recap of what has happened- the road so far. It serves to catch you up, and set you up, for what comes next.
Blogging is is your own "The Road So Far." Each blog let's people in on what has brought you to this point in your story- and that's what this is- a story. Your story. No matter what type of blog you write, it is a snapshot of the "where have I been and where am I going?" moment that is now. So what can you write about?
Not necessarily Socrates and Plato.
As an educator, you have beliefs about your craft. Blogs are great places to work that out and test it out with your audience. My Philosophy type blogs are like Why? where I discuss motivations and beliefs about teaching. These can be intensely personal, or even more reflective. I think these are a good place to start, because they are about digging into feelings.
Reflective blogs are ones that look back and ask how something went. Last year, I did weekly reflective blogs for the first semester. It was a great tool to have me evaluate myself, but also to share with students to see what they thought. Though they never responded to me, I just learned this weekend that they were in fact talking about it with each other and other teachers. Culture Success was a reflective blog from this year.
Like Reflective Blogs, these share something you have done, but in a way that allows others to take your idea and run with it. Multimedia is very helpful here- sharing pictures or better yet video allows your audience to see the concept in a multi-dimensional way. These can be instructional, demonstrative, and also theoretical. I have done some about things I am GOING to try. Can You Hear Me? is one of my Practice blogs.
Like Philosophy, this blog talks about beliefs, but this also adds a plan. I set out my vision for my classroom culture design in CREATE. The vision has changed since then, but it allowed me to combine philosophy, theory, and practice, and share a vision for what I think class can be like. Vision blogs also act as call to action blogs, saying "this is important, take a look and take a step!"
I really am throwing this out there because I know there are people have different learning styles. Some blogs are not like typical blogs. Some fiction writers have serialized their novels in blogs- I think Stephen King has tried it. I decided to branch out with a series of blogs that are parables to explain educational concepts and philosophies. Two that I am particularly proud of are A Parable of Trust and A Parable of Choice. These are not for everyone, and can be more difficult to sell to your readers, but I do think they are extremely valuable and a great way to differentiate our own learning.
This is for the terrible typers out there. Just kidding. Sort of.
So, you hate to type, but love to share. Turn that camera around on your phone and start filming. It is just as awkward- maybe more- as blogging when you start, but it has such power. We are visual, and a blog is that. It is also usually quicker to complete than a blog. I take up to an hour to write a blog, but 5-10 minutes for a vlog. You need to be comfortable with your recorded voice, though. I know a lot of educators hate being on film for that very reason, but I encourage you to power through. Vlogs are excellent tools, whether your goal is to eventually give a TEDtalk or not. Here is one of my more recent efforts: didacticchad.weebly.com/home/create-classroom-collaboration
The Road So Far
I wanted to share my own personal road so far in hopes that you might find a great place to start your own blogging journey. What I have listed is not exhaustive, but it is what has worked for me. Your journey will most likely have its stumbles, but that is the beauty of blogging- they are all, in a way, reflective. We grow, we stumble, we pick ourselves up, we grow.
And the journey never ends....
I teach Psychology, Sociology, Communication Applications and Debate at College Station High School, as well as coach the debate team and co-sponsor Student Council. I am an aspiring administrator.