Darin Janssen’s Weblog

Reflective Blogging?

When I was reading this article it stuck me that most of my professors have been telling us to reflect on everything we do as teachers, but not really helping us find a way which works for us.  I think the problem is that whenever I handed in some sort of reflection there were no comments back; no pushing of my thought process.  Most of the time there was comments like interesting, insightful thinking, or just check marks (which are the ones I hate the most).  Check marks are not helpful or thought provoking.  How do I even know they read it or thought about what I was saying?  My four year old son can put check marks on a page.  Thought out comments or suggestions are the most helpful to me.  I know that meaningful comments are time consuming to write, but they are useful and will help me and others become more reflective about what we are doing.

The next thing to think about is why it is hard to become a reflective blogger.  From my perspective I have some things that challenge me to becoming, what I consider, deeply reflective on my blog.  One is that I am still learning how to think more deeply about the ideas which go through my head.  That is where most of my reflection happens; in my head.  I have never been someone who wrote a journal so I have little experience with writing my thoughts down.  I usually keep them to myself.  One reason why I keep my thoughts in my head is my second reason why I am challenged to become more of a reflective blogger.  I am unsure of what I should be posting on the internet.  To clarify, this may help.  I am a pre-service teacher who is married with two kids.  On top of my family, I also have a mortgage and other bills which need to be paid.  I need a teaching job!  I hope that my future employer takes the time to look me up on the internet to see what I have been doing.  I am scared that they may see something that causes them to not to hire me.  I would hope the fact that I am being reflective about my life and teaching would be a huge positive to a future employer, but that is something I will never know.  I even question what I have written above; should I post this or make changes?

In the other stuff which Dean suggested to read and the presentation I watched, I have started to change my mind about what is important for me as a teacher.  I know that reflection is important, but I think that a possible conversation about some of my reflections are also important to push me to places which I never thought of.  I should not be afraid to post something because of what some potential employer may think, because what is important is my personal growth.  It will continue to be a challenge for me to be more reflective online, but I can now see that my blog can be a place where I can gain some comments on what I have written, which I need to push my thinking and learning.  Now I just need to start commenting on some of the blogs I follow to draw more people to my blog.  I guess I need to stop lurking and start conversing.

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January 18, 2010 - Posted by | ECMP 455, General, Reflection | , , ,

2 Comments »

  1. Hi Darin,
    I feel exactly the same! My comment in one of my English essays was, “it could be stronger” How can it be stronger? In this class you were given one time to revise and hand it in for a second marking but if you do not know how to make it stronger, you could spend weeks of time and effort for nothing. I never did figure it out on my own. I was fortunate to receive help from a friend, in the long run giving me a strong mark in English.
    I have many times wanted to go back and delete many postings. I am always worried about tone. I hear myself reading it but how is it being read from someone else? I never write anything in a negative way but I am always scared it may come across that way. I always keep everything in my head and have had a hard time reflecting to the public too. Who wants to hear my ramblings of success, failures, and what I think or am doing? Seems weird, but I have been taking the initiative to put myself out there. I started blogging again, twittering more, and trying new stuff.
    I can so relate to your whole posting. Good luck with your lurking and conversing!

    Comment by Shiels3k | January 22, 2010

  2. It is nice to see that I am not the only one getting poor or no feedback. I would have to go and ask the instructor how I could make it stronger or what was meant by the comment.
    I think that the more we write online our tone can be understood by the people who are reading our stuff on a regular basis. Everyone has a different way of speaking and writing, so people will figure it out or start a conversation with us to clarify what it is we are saying.

    Comment by Darin Janssen | January 31, 2010


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