Welcome to my first official WordPress blog! Why, might you ask, do I specifically express that this is a WordPress blog? After our first EC&I 831 class on Tuesday, January 12th, I had made a website on Weebly to use as my blog for personal reflections on course material and my final learning project (you can access that website, and my first reflection, here). However, after our second class on Tuesday, January 19th, it was noted that Weebly – although great for personal and professional websites in general – is not as functional for a blog as is WordPress. Therefore, I have since created this WordPress site, which I will be using for the remainder of the course (and beyond, once I get a hang of blogging, pingbacks, embedding hyperlinks, and things of the like).
The change in my blogging site was not the only revelation I had during our second class. Everything that was taught, every notion and technological word or action, was news to me, and brought about an equal amount of excitement as well as anxiety. The format for this course is unlike anything I have ever taken, and will take some getting used to before I can truly feel comfortable in what I am doing.
These blog posts are a primary example of pushing myself out of my comfort zone into an area of unknown. Casual, clever, and witty writing has never been a strength of mine. Developing creative and interesting blog titles will never be easy for me (I reference my oh-so-original first blog title Welcome to EC&I 831 – Reflections on our first class. To be honest, I barely want to re-read it). Embedding hyperlinks, images, and youtube videos will take some practice, as will the concepts of widgets (which I still don’t even understand for my phone). However, this is not a bad thing. While I was reading some of the material provided by the professors on the advantages of blogging (Seven reasons teachers should blog and 9 reasons teachers should blog are two particularly concise yet clear articles stating the benefits of blogging), I came to the realization that I haven’t been sharing as much as I have been taking. Throughout my four years of teaching, I have googled, found, and extensively used information and resources created by other teachers to help me develop my own lessons. The Science Spot Lady’s Blog, La Classe des Gnomes, Teaching with Elly Thorsen, and Beakers and Bumblebees are just a few blogs created by educators that I have used this year alone. I think it may be time for me to do my part, to create a blog that perhaps other teachers could use for their lessons and units.
Therefore, I am coming out of this week’s class still very overwhelmed for the class’ technological and social media requirements. (Not-so-fun fact: During this week’s class, my normally very consistent internet bandwidth cut out, leaving me high and dry for fifteen minutes, trying to figure out how to re-join the class via the internet conference launcher Zoom. Not-so-fun fact number two: I never actually solved the problem, my husband did). Nonetheless, this sense of being overwhelmed is one of the best ways I can push myself to learn and grow as an educator in the 21st century. So, in conclusion, overwhelmed? Yes. Already learning new, exciting, and different ways to communicate and learn about education? Absolutely (proof: this blog).