Here are my two cents, Kate.
I started reading blogs about four years ago because I wanted to grow as a teacher, become more informed about the common core, as well as issues surrounding education reform. For teaching and learning I started with the big gun, Dan Meyer. I can’t remember when, but at some point I discovered the comments his followers wrote were so interesting it led me to follow other bloggers.
I don’t limit my blog reading to math. I also read Diane Ravitch to stay current with what’s happening on the education reform front.
Returning to the blog; a repeat customer
I do it for professional development. I love learning and discovering how much more there is to learn. A recent case in point is Fawn Nguyen’s post regarding how she uses her visual patterns site. She wrote, “I don’t teach kids — nor discourage them — to set up an input/output table to find the common differences to figure out the equations. I just don’t because doing so seems to render the visual patterns themselves insignificant.”
I didn’t realize until now, but she’s actually teaching her students how to read and interpret a visual. It’s math and reading combined.
She and others also share their classroom experiences–what lessons went well, what flopped. The challenges they face and the strategies they have tried. Plus the comments offer words of wisdom.
Why do you write?
I’m selfish. I write for me. It’s a journal of my thoughts and ideas and an opportunity to receive feedback.
What would you hope to be hearing from me?
Most teachers attend workshops/presentations to gain knowledge and acquire resources. Aside from a list of blogs and their target audiences, I think your attendees would benefit from learning about the professional development the blogging community offers, why the bloggers blog, and why your attendees should start blogging too.
The only difference between “us and them” is a blog account. It doesn’t cost a dime; the only cost is time; and the time is well spent.