Many teachers who are interested in blogging hold back because they question their worth. They often assume that their sharing will be of little interest to others. Blogging isn’t about being an expert or having the best ideas. It’s not even about helping others (although I really hope that I do). First and foremost, blogging is a personal, reflective process that I benefit from more than any of my readers.
Having said that, I urge those people not to doubt themselves. I am sure that other teachers will benefit from anything that you share. Think of it this way: imagine if your blog helps just ten teachers. That’s around three hundred children who would benefit! (I love multiplying my blog statistics by thirty!) Now imagine if your blog helps a lot more than ten teachers. It will.
I have only been blogging for a couple of years and I do not consider myself an expert in any particular area of education. I’m just a teacher. I have nothing more to offer than anyone else. Yet, I have experienced some moments that make me proud of my sharing and confirm that I have a positive impact on others. I’m not sharing to show off. Rather, to prove that any teacher can make a success of blogging and use their platform to help others as well as themselves.
“I write because it makes me feel alive. It’s a what to my why. No matter the mood or tone of the words on the page, the activity fills my heart with delight and with a sense of closure. Writing is my voice when I can’t speak. It’s the way I share my voice with the world.”
Tara Martin, Be REAL: Educate from the Heart
Here are my top five most memorable moments (so far) as a teacher blogger, starting back in 2016 as a newbie:
5. Seesaw Ambassadors (2016)
In the past, the Seesaw Ambassador course was only available twice a year (it’s now available any time). On a day that it opened, I was contacted separately by two teachers who wanted to thank me for sharing my experience and inspiring them. As a result of my Seesaw blog posts, they had applied and successfully completed the course. Being thanked by a couple of teachers might seem like a small experience, but I was a new blogger at the time and this confirmed that my blog had an impact on teachers internationally. Nowadays, I get messages like this frequently about Seesaw, Google, etc. (a few this week, in fact). It’s wonderful to know that I have this kind of positive influence on other people’s self-learning.
4. Being recognised (2017)
On a few occasions, I have been recognised by teachers at events. Because it happens so rarely, it still makes me feel special. I want to give a special shout-out to the lovely Maria Zialcita who even asked me for a selfie (left). My brief celebrity moment meant a lot more to me than it did to her! To make the experience even more special, Maria sent the selfie to a colleague who simply replied with: “A Twitter legend”. This experience isn’t about vanity (well, it is a little); it’s about feeling appreciated. Maria absolutely made my day! I felt valued as a teacher and blogger by someone who, before that day, I didn’t even know.
3. Being nominated for a UK Blog Award (2017)
Back in December, my blog was nominated for a UK Blog Award. I was so honoured and humbled. Thank you to everyone who voted for me. It really meant the world! Sadly, I wasn’t shortlisted, but it was still amazing to be even considered. I was in fine company in my category, alongside some fantastic education blogs (some of which inspired this one) and so it was amazing just to be mentioned in the same breath as them. Hopefully, I’ll be able to go a step further next year!
2. Being quoted in Be REAL: Educate from the Heart (2018)
Seeing my name in print is very cool! I’m so thrilled that Tara Martin included my quote in her book. To make this even cooler, it just happens to be one of the best, most inspiring education books that I have ever read. It’s an honour to be even a small part of it. This particular chapter is about #BookSnaps (Tara’s brainchild) but, as a whole, the book is about being REAL (Relatable, Expose vulnerability, Approachable and Learning through life). Tara reminds us to keep the children and relationships at the heart of all that we do. I can’t recommend it enough! When Tara, a well-known educator who I admire greatly, approached me for a quote, it showed that she valued my thoughts and contribution.
1. Massive book donation (2018)
If you read my previous blog post, you know that I am currently organising a book giveaway (if you didn’t read it yet, click here and get involved). As I explained last week, this giveaway was made possible by the generosity of Dave and Shelley Burgess (two more educators who I admire). They have been following my blog and noticed that I regularly mention books from their publishing company, Dave Burgess Consulting, Inc. To thank me for my support, they donated thirty of their books to me as a 30th birthday gift so that I can share them with my readers. It means a lot to me that influential educators like Dave and Shelley pay attention to my blog and want to support it. The day that I received thirty brand new books was unbelievably exciting! I can’t wait to share them with my PLN. The first five winners will be selected at random this coming Wednesday – so exciting!
Nowadays, we have fantastic platforms available to us that give us a voice and allow us to express ourselves. Don’t doubt your worth! “Cannonball in” (as Tara Martin would say) and see where it leads you. Blogging is powerful, impactful and far-reaching. If you have ever considered blogging (or any other output for content creation), go for it! As always, give me a shout if I can help in any way.
“When you are not sharing your brilliant ideas, you are doing a disservice to others.”
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