Saturday, May 28, 2005

Through the Labyrinth

When I was assigned the job of creating a site for leaders and learners of ICT, I thought I wasn't a geekish enough. I was into the human side of computing, not all that tech stuff like php MySQL and all the Open Source coding I hear some of my colleagues discuss. Little did I know that I would be embarking on an adventure through a labyrinth that would connect me to an amazing virtual community of educational bloggers. They don't know me, yet, but I know them through their posts.

I have come across Bud the Teacher. He has been blogging with his class. One post I enjoyed, recently was The End, in which he described how his students explained their blogging experience to another teacher. It showed both that students can teach teachers, but also in reflecting on one student's response, it gave Bud a new perspective on his students' experience. I also am getting to know Bud through the links to blogs he reads. One link took me on a path to Nancy Mckeand.

Nancy writes a blog called Random Thoughts. Her post on Question #3 in which she responds to a question of Mr. McNamar (The Daily Grind) She reflected on whether or not blogs should be assessed and if so how. She quoted from Tyr who is a student of Bud. Tyr wrote:

Students, at the beginning of the class should explain what they want to accomplish with their blog as a final goal or as a 'major' goal. The occasional assignment/prompt from the teacher is fine to keep people on track and to make sure they have an accurate depction of what they are meant to do. If a student then does not do what attempted to set out for the class goals, then s/he will not receive an A, the grade would then fall into the hands of the teacher based on the other work this student has submitted.

Students understand goal-setting and reflection. What fascinated me was the interconnection of the blogging community. People respond to each other's blogs both through comments and through more extensive reflections in their own blogs.

I had to go and see what Mr. McNamar had written. His post: Reflecting on a Blog is a wonderful model of teacher reflection. He states articulately the issues he is thinking about and what the questions are that he will be pondering.
Writing has put the ideas out, not only for himself to examine, but we can share his voyage. The power of the blog is that people have added their comments giving Mr. McNamar (and me) food for thought and other perspectives coming from different experiences.

Each blog takes me on new adventures in the labyrinth. I do come up for air, but the atmosphere of the Blogosphere is heady and it lures me back frequently.


  1. Lisa Diner, RECIT, WQSB12:46 p.m.

    I, too, am beginning my blog experience and your opening paragraph reassured me that one does not need to be totally tech in order to use blogs in a classroom. Your description of the blog labyrinth is well chosen and reassuring as the journey is just beginning.

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    Most of us don’t practice goal setting because it takes to much time, even those of us who write about and study it.

    Are you guilty?

    Here’s your “nugget”…

    How to Begin to Achieve Your Goals

    Once you have set your lifetime goals, the best thing that you can do is set a 25 year plan of smaller goals that you should complete if you are to reach your lifetime plan.
    From there you can just shorten your overall goal spans for example, you set a 5 year plan, 1 year plan, 6 month plan, and 1 month plan of progressively smaller goals that you should reach to achieve your lifetime goals.

    Each of these should be based on the previous plan. It is the best way to begin to achieve a lifetime that is filled with and results in a life without any failed wishes. It results in a life without regret.

    You see, by starting out slowly, you are giving yourself the chance to realize and work on achieving the goals that you set out to.

    Nobody ever succeeds at attaining a goal that was forced through. Those that tried never really got what they were hoping for. In rushing through and trying to achieve your goals quickly you will likely miss a few key aspects that can really change your outcome.

    Think of it this way; if you were to run a 10K marathon and decided to take a cab for half of the journey; have you really achieved that goal? Would you be satisfied when you crossed the finish line?

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    Finally set a daily to do list of the things that you should do today to work towards your lifetime goals.

    At an early stage these goals may be to read books and gather information on the achievement of your goals. This will help you to improve the quality and realism of your goal setting and in effect; make it easier to achieve them.

    You also have to review your plans, and make sure that they fit the way in which you want to live your life.

    Once you have decided what your first set of plans will be, keep the process going by reviewing and updating your to-do list on a daily basis.

    You have to periodically review the longer term plans, and change them to reflect your changing priorities and experiences in your life.

    Have a GREAT day, and set a few new goals while you’re at it!