I have found reflecting through blogging to be an excellent practice. During my 3 week pre-internship at a local high school last year, I wrote a reflective blog post every day. That reflective post allows you to look back at your experience and evaluate what went well, what didn’t work, and ways you might improve your lesson or experience. You can look through my pre-internship category of posts to see all of my reflections. While it was time consuming, I felt it was very effective as I can now come back to it at anytime if I am teaching those same lessons or classes again in the future. During my internship this year I chose not to write reflective blog posts but rather post short reflections on twitter. This did not work quite as well as I didn’t really look back or put a lot of thought into the tweets.
Overall I would suggest blogging as the best form of reflection. Sharing your thoughts and experiences with others can allow for you to see different perspectives or new ideas via comments and links. Ideally I think it would be realistic to blog about once a week as an educator. When teaching full-time it seems as though a daily blog is highly unrealistic for most including myself.
Reflective blogging is a great form of personal and professional development. It can be a key contributor to improving ones teaching and learning practices.
What are your thoughts? Is reflective blogging realistic when teaching full-time? Is there a line to draw between personal reflections and educational reflections?
Aside from being used by educators as a form of professional development, blogging in the classroom can help students become networked learners as shown below.
It feels as though this course has flown by, I have learned so many new things in such a short amount of time. This is the first time I have taken a Spring course and I really enjoyed it. At times it was tough to stay inside and work on some of the projects but it was definitely worth it.
At the begging of this course I was a little unsure of blogging. I was aware of educational blogs and had followed a few in the past but I had never done it myself. It wasn’t until a couple weeks into the course when I read a blog post by Dean Shareski entitled “Lesson #1 Share…The Presentation” that I truly began to understand the power and importance of blogging. The presentation embedded in his post explained the importance of contributing and sharing. Some of the guidelines were “Share what you read, share what you think, share what you see and share what you create.” This is an amazing presentation and it relates very closely to ECMP 355, looking at the guidelines I think of how I personally have followed these in this course. Share what you read – I have began to use del.icio.us to publish my online bookmarks for anyone to see. Share what you think – Through this blog and commenting on other blogs I have been able to share my thoughts. Share what you see – Flickr is a great resource for sharing photos. Through this course I have realized the power of photos and the impact they can have on learning. Although I have not yet done much photography myself this is something I am interested in trying. Lastly, Share what your create – In this course I have been able to share some of my work on my blog and I have also discovered things such as blip.tv where I can share my creations. Having become more comfortable with blogging my perception has changed greatly, I now realize the benefits of blogging.
I really like the idea of blogging for the classroom. Blogging can be beneficial in many different subject areas and also at many different levels. As a Business Education Major I think blogging would be great for an information processing class. It would provide an excellent opportunity for keyboarding practice as well as social learning; students can post their work and receive comments as well as comment on others’ work. In addition, blogging could be advantageous for a communication and production technology (CPT) class as the students would be able to post/embed some of the work that they have done. If the opportunity to teach either of these courses or any other course that I feel would benefit from blogging presented itself I will definitely test the waters.
Overall the blogging process has been very enjoyable. It has given me the opportunity to experience social learning through blogging, commenting and viewing. This is something that I feel is often overlooked and underutilized in other courses. One area within blogging that I feel I can improve on is commenting. Feedback is a useful tool in the learning process and an area I will look to enhance. I have been exposed to many great resources, tools and ideas through this course and it is now up to me to maximize the potential of these things during my educational journey!