Last night, instead of watching TV or doing other things, I cruised Pinterest for a while looking for some bulletin board and project ideas and was somehow prompted to visit a blog that I’ve bookmarked called Life in 4B. I don’t remember how I stumbled upon this blog (probably something on Pinterest led me there,) but the teacher who writes it is incredible and always has great ideas.
I hadn’t clicked on the bookmark for quite a while, and before I knew it, I had spent almost 2 hours looking through her recent posts, jotting down new ideas, and just sighing in awe at all of the wonderful things she accomplishes (and then documents on her blog in detail!) every day.
Wishing I could instantly snap my fingers and be as organized and phenomenal as this teacher, I took a step back and started to think.
I may not know where I am going, but I know where to start: I have a good handle on technology, I have a solid knowledge base in my content area, and although I have much to learn and much to work on, I do really believe that I am a good teacher. But, the ways in which I can become a better teacher, the ways in which I can enhance my students’ learning, the ways in which I can incorporate technology, the ways in which I can harness the resources out there that are available to me…are endless.
It’s a bit daunting to be able to see the start of the path, but not around the bend, don’t you think?
All at once, I grew overwhelmed and energized, if that’s even possible. Just as I have taken this first step in becoming a connected educator, being a part of PLP, developing my PLN, joining Twitter, broadening my digital footprint, just when I think I’m reaching the top of my game…I read a blog or a wiki or scroll through my Twitter feed and realize, there are many, many, miles yet to go.
I thought for a second about it, and realized that I think that’s the point, though, the point of being a lifelong learner. What fun (or use) would it be to reach the top of your game and then just…stop?
So, I took a deep breath, STOPPED writing down endless ideas for next year and even later this year in my Word doc, saved it, and closed it, and left tomorrow for tomorrow (which is now today.)
If I focus on adding small things, incorporating new strategies, using new tools one step at a time, I know I will grow at my own pace. But, I’ll never stop exploring and I’ll never stop tempting my desire to be a better educator by seeking out new ideas and yes…by scrolling through other incredible teachers’ blogs.
I find being overwhelmed and overwhelmed again eventually subsides into drive, devotion, energy, and passion. I try new things. Sometimes I fail. I learn. Then, I go and get overwhelmed again.
Rinse, repeat, you get the picture.
So, keep the overwhelming coming.
In addition to that, this morning I was going through some books I brought from home that I had read in my middle school years as well as some that I used for an adolescent lit. class to add to my classroom library. I opened one that I was particularly fond of: Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett. On one of the opening pages is this quote:
“One can’t learn much and also be comfortable. One can’t learn much and let anybody else be comfortable.” -Charles Fort, Wild Talents
Quite fitting, isn’t it? for my journey here with PLP and our journeys as lifelong learners first?