I can’t help it. I’m curious. I wonder a lot. My students giggle when something strikes me as interesting and I MUST discover more.
I know it takes time, and that we don’t learn because some one wants us to; we learn because we want to.
So when I explained to my husband time and again on our country walks about the hexagonal/pentagonal shapes of the basaltic columns upon which we hiked, that concept slipped in one ear and out the other. Until one day, he stopped and looked down and around at the top of the columns.
“Look,” he exclaimed. “Each of these basalt columns are shaped like a pentagon. That must be how the lava cooled.”
“Yep,” I nodded and smiled, because we learn when we are ready.
Knowing that makes it difficult to teach in a testing world where pacing calendars and interventions fill every moment of every day.
But because I know this, and because I wonder, I learn along with my students — I learn what they, and I, wonder about. We squeeze it in; I work it into the lessons. Without their wonder; they can’t learn.
So, I live learning.
And when my granddaughter joined twitter in 2007, I joined twitter to be a good grandma and monitor her online presence. And that was the beginning of an amazing learning experience.
I met my friend, whom I’ve never met in person, Denise Krebs. We heard about Connected Educator Month and decided to put our ideas together and present! We had learned much together and through our PLN that we wanted to share with others. We jumped into sharing, and not just lurking.
Here’s one of our trailers:
and here’s the info on our presentation:
Extend the Conversation
Join, Lurk, Learn, Extend
Build your own bytes.
It was so much fun planning it in Google Docs, on Twitter, and with Google Hangout. We hope it helped someone else jump in and connect with others in our global world. I hope to add more with the connections in #ETMOOC , extending the conversation and the network to build knowledge for others.
So, thanks to Denise, (and many others in our Google+ / Twitter PLN, I’ve continued learning through more than just “lurking.” And I’ve joined the #ETMOOC to continue that conversation, inviting others to join in, and learning more. I need the inspiration to brighten my own and my students’ test practicing days. I want my students to see how I continuously learn — wherever I am.
How about you? Have you been impacted by your personal learning network? Has it helped you jump up and out into the cloud of conversation? Have you brought that inspiration back into your classroom?