An unusually social weekend in my household had me hosting friends both on Friday and Saturday nights. Great to catch up with friends I had not seen in a while – friends who happen not to be teachers, but are successful in their chosen professional fields.
In conversation, I mentioned my new found interest in Twitter and Blogs. I was challenged on both evenings – “I haven’t got time for things like Twitter and Facebook”, “It’s all a waste of time” and “I’ve got more important things to do”.
I confess to being one of those people who, when confronted or challenged, takes too much time to come up with a coherent response. I so wish I had the ability to think on my feet (or in the case on the couch in front of the fire) and immediately come out with an eloquent list of all the reasons I value these communications. Instead, I explained that it is great PD and I don’t feel like it is time wasted. I didn’t really convince myself and afterwards felt that it was an opportunity lost to inform people outside my profession about the benefits of my PLN. It was clear that the people I was talking to, had little or no understanding of twitter or blogs or even Facebook for that matter
I wish I could have said ….
These tools connect me to people all around the world who challenge and extend my thinking. It is not a waste of time as I am mentally stimulated and encouraged to try different tools. Without Twitter and blogs my experiences would be limited to the narrow sphere of my local network. I believe that the teaching profession is demonstrating a great strength by exhibiting amazing camaraderie – learning from each other. Perhaps the architects of this world could learn a thing or two from teachers’ use of Web 2.0?”
I also wish I had replied ….
Being a parent of teenagers and not being on Facebook yourself is foolhardy. How can you expect to understand your children and the issues they face if you close your eyes to one of the most important communication tools your children use. I know you will not necessarily be invited into all their conversations (nor should you be) , but you will be a presence and along the way gain an important understanding”
and I also wish I had had the presence of mind to say …..
Writing a blog is part of my important reflective practice. It makes me think about why I do things and how I do them. I ‘make’ the time as it is worthwhile. It connects me with people who will sometimes agree but often challenge my thinking and I like that. I believe that this practice is not limited to teachers – shouldn’t all professionals reflect?
So, to the next person who challenges my use of social networking – I hope you are ready ……. At the very least I will be able to say – read my blog !!!!!