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Reader, you are important to me

My post for the Teacher Challenge Activity #8.

A paradox of my blogging experience is to dismiss the importance of readership to fully appreciate it.

Before I started blogging I thought that there was no point in me writing anything as, most likely, none of it would be original. Quite likely, someone else has said it before and more eloquently. The latter is certainly true and yet I have leapt into blogosphere.

Before starting with blogging, I asked myself, “If I can’t write for others, do I have enough reasons to write for me?”  Here were my original reasons:

  1. I needed somewhere to store and categorise my resources for ease of access from home and work. This includes my blogrolls, by the way.
  2. I needed a way to expound micro-blogging(Twitter); some thoughts are too complex to be limited in 140 characters or a series thereof (especially for a non-wordsmith like me)
  3. I needed a way to document my reflections on my practice; I’ve always been a reflective person with multiple failed attempts at written journals

These were and are selfish reasons – forget the readers, do it for me – but sufficient to get me started with blogging. They served me well as I’m still here, more than a year later. These reasons are still true and I do have meagre readership for which I’m very grateful as I am definitely not one to ask about how to promote readership (never really been good at selling my skills). Nevertheless, my readers have given me more reasons to keep blogging:

  1. I can crowd-source my learning. Coupled with Twitter, this is just so powerful
  2. It’s an avenue for conversations otherwise unlikely to happen. Kathleen Cushman of firesinthemind.org (please go there) once wrote to me “thank you for making your good thinking public”. Certainly, ego-boosting but mostly humbling because of the many who blog (and micro-blog) as a way of making their thinking accessible to a wider audience.
  3. Even though many are steps (strides) ahead of me, many more are behind me or, better yet with me. I certainly find affirming that there are others who share my journey.
  4. It helps me voice my support for ideas such as computerbasedmath.org as well as people, e..g my posts or in blogrolls
  5. It has become a point of reference for me as a teacher and as an IT integrator

In short, blogging allows me to further my learning in the company of fellow learners – my PLN.

Truth be told, I have felt like Julie Powell (of Julie and Julia fame) as in feeling obliged to write something interesting for readers and I get a little nervous. Then I go back to the first 3 and then the following 5.  Signing up to do the Teacher Challenge – Kickstart your blog 2011 has not only allowed me to learn new things about blogging, it has helped me appreciate all the reasons I’ve listed above.

Here I am, undoubtedly flawed but always true to my passion for learning and finding ways to keep doing so for myself and my readers. Because, dear reader, you are now acknowledged as a travel companion. You are important to me because you are now part of my story. Let us enjoy the journey.

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21 Responses to “Reader, you are important to me”

  1. February 4th, 2011 at 6:46 am   Reply

    Christy Berry says:

    I just love this thoughtful post. You put your thoughts so eloquently into words. Even though I read every word of you blog; I like how you have bold words for your main ideas. This allows me to easy look back at your post and remember what your main idea was.

    -Mrs. Berry

    • February 4th, 2011 at 7:05 pm   Reply

      malyn says:

      Thank you Christy. As you know, your visits and esp. comments mean much to me. I hope the conversation continues.

      cheers,
      Malyn

  2. February 4th, 2011 at 7:10 am   Reply

    Anna Bring says:

    Yes, let’s enjoy this journey. And all these conversations about everything important to US are wonderful! I am learning lots everyday, reading yours and everybody elses posts from this challenge. You have put so many of my own thoughts into words!

    • February 4th, 2011 at 7:07 pm   Reply

      malyn says:

      Thank you Anna. As mentioned, many share my journey and hearing about this directly through comments further affirms it. Long may the conversations continue.

      cheers,
      Malyn

  3. February 4th, 2011 at 7:49 am   Reply

    Kim says:

    Malyn,

    I can relate to your sentiment about not being original, I hesitated to blog in the past because of not wanting to be redundant or irrelevant. However I do feel that reflecting on my practice is always useful, plus I want to set an example for my students. I’d like them to blog regularly as well and find inspiration from reading other’s blogs.

    Great post!

    Kim

    • February 4th, 2011 at 7:09 pm   Reply

      malyn says:

      Thanks Kim. I think to be a good teacher requires a lot of empathy. One of my recent posts Teacher, be a learner goes into this a bit deeper. I reckon if we are to expect students to blog then we must be bloggers ourselves. How else can we guide and facilitate their learning.

      I hope you come by again in the future.

      cheers,
      Malyn

  4. February 4th, 2011 at 1:36 pm   Reply

    Lydia Schultz says:

    It’s true–we are all going through this together. And it is wonderful to have company on the trip. Thanks for your thoughts and your ideas. I hope we will continue to “travel” together in the future.

  5. February 4th, 2011 at 3:55 pm   Reply

    mrsdkrebs says:

    Amen, Malyn, going through the bloggin challenge has helped me to clarify my own voice in a noisy world. I like this post. I “tweeted” it too. Did you notice? I don’t know how I heard your voice the first time I opened it. Does it come on when someone arrives? I thought it was delightful and I learned some new things.
    Thanks, Denise
    http://mrsdkrebs.edublogs.org/2011/02/03/class-of-2011-ksyb-teacher-challenge-commencement/

    • February 4th, 2011 at 7:14 pm   Reply

      malyn says:

      Thanks Denise for the follow and the tweet and yes I noticed it (just then). You must have clicked on my home page link which displays most recent posts including the Twitter one; my video on Twitter automatically plays when displayed. I haven’t worked out the html for it not to. I think if it was an embed via YouTube, TeacherTube, Vimeo and the like, the user will have more control. Anyway, I’m glad it wasn’t bothersome for you and that you learned something even. Delightful indeed!

      cheers,
      Malyn

  6. February 5th, 2011 at 9:39 am   Reply

    mistea says:

    Malyn
    You write so well many of my own thoughts. Thanks too for the links which I have bookmarked for further exploration. I am very grateful for this teacher challenge which has brought me in contact for so many outstanding educators. I look forward to being part of the next stage of our journey.
    Kathryn

  7. February 5th, 2011 at 6:18 pm   Reply

    Anne Mirtschin says:

    Great post Malyn. As I read the start of your post, I felt like it might have been me writing as that is just how I started. I have also loved this challenge and although I have not had a lot of time to put into my blog posts, I have learnt so much from everyone and look forward to continuing the journey with you and the others who participated in the Kick Start Your Blog challenge.Twitter will be a great way to stay connected.

    • February 6th, 2011 at 3:42 pm   Reply

      malyn says:

      Thanks Anne. You have been amazing in visiting so many (all?) bloggers. I don’t know how you fit it all in. You’re right about Twitter and have begun following you, too.
      cheers,
      Malyn

  8. February 6th, 2011 at 12:27 am   Reply

    Jee Young says:

    Hi Malyn,

    I enjoyed reading your post. One of the main reasons I started my blog

  9. February 6th, 2011 at 12:30 am   Reply

    Jee Young says:

    Oops, I pressed enter by accident above…

    One of the main reasons I started my blog was to use it as a place of reflection on my teaching practice too. I think it is hard to create a big readership, but it will happen in time if we keep at it! I really enjoyed being part of this blogging challenge because I got a chance to meet many bloggers from all over the world! Thanks for your sharing your thoughts about twitter as well. I haven’t joined, but now I’m seriously thinking about it!

    –jee young

    • February 6th, 2011 at 3:46 pm   Reply

      malyn says:

      Thanks Jee for visiting and commenting. I’m glad you’re seriously thinking about Twitter – join in when you’re ready. Until then, you can still search for topics (eg #ksyb, #edchat, etc) or people (e.g. I’m @malynmawby). See you around.
      cheers,
      Malyn

  10. February 7th, 2011 at 2:47 am   Reply

    mrsjwilson says:

    Malyn, I have definitely enjoyed being part of this journey throughout the challenge. I look forward to seeing where the road takes us as we continue our blogging endeavours. Good luck!

  11. February 7th, 2011 at 12:32 pm   Reply

    Sheri Edwards says:

    Malyn, After reading all the comments I realized and hope you do to, that even though our idea may not be original, they certainly do ring true for many, and may be just the thing to help another person to move into their own journey. That said, though, your words are eloquent. I look forward to reading more from you.

    • February 7th, 2011 at 7:23 pm   Reply

      malyn says:

      Dear Sheri, Thanks. I do realise that some ideas need to be re-told for those who haven’t heard of them yet. I do hope to see you on my blog again.
      cheers,
      Malyn

  12. February 13th, 2011 at 7:17 pm   Reply

    Serge Puchinsky says:

    Really loved this post. I’ll soon be trying to convince other music teachers in my district to blog and share their ideas and you post really rings true to me – it’s right to the point and really sums up why this is so important. I will definitely share this with my fellow teachers.

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