Monday, May 14, 2007

Blogosphere, San Francisco Calling

I'm looking forward to visiting San Francisco to present a session on Weblog Literacy to a conference of teachers later this week. After being in the blogosphere it's nice to put one's feet on terra firma and talk with teachers about blogging, share challenges and inspirations.

Sort of like the experience politicians must feel inside the beltway and losing track of reality, being in the blogosphere and surfing the Net one can get a rarified view of technology in education and loose track of what's really happening in classrooms across the country. To only read the tech-savvy blogger-educators can leave one with the impression that everyone else is way ahead of the game.

As far behind in learning about how to integrate Web 2.0 tools into my own teaching in comparison to others in my blogroll, I feel I am even more arears to getting colleagues and students and parents up to speed. It's easy to feel overwhelmed at how much there is to learn, and then to think about how what I'm trying to learn today is already being usurped by the "what's next." It will be good to find out what educators in silicone valley are thinking, tooling, and teaching.

Comparing my practice to some of the pioneers out here in the blogosphere, or even Californians on the ground may miss the point. As my uncle who used to take me and my belongings to college once told me on one of those sojourns said, "You'll always be better than somebody and somebody else will always be better than you."

Maybe that's where the paradigm of collaboration begins, and the spirit of competition peters out. Reading and writing blogs and web pages with colleagues and mentors, as well as with students, has enriched my teaching practice in a few short months and years--a grand self-paced professional development, it's like grad school, only without the federal loans and without the Act 48 (PA re-ceritification credits). As I figure out what I have to offer my students and my colleagues, I find benefits of what they offer in return.

Image credit: 14 May 2007 San Francisco, CA, USA. Google Maps

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