A while back, I accidentally discovered the math blogosphere. I had no idea what a blog even was, let alone that there were teachers out there using them to share ideas.
From there, I discovered that there were science teachers out there who had classrooms that had kids doing what I wanted my kids to do.
So, I began filling my Reader with teachers who know what they are talking about. There was no organization to it, I would find someone who had something interesting to say and start following.
Today, I got a chance to sit down and do a little much needed Reader organization. I wouldn't have worried too much about it, but I would sit down and start at the top. It was an emotional rollercoaster going from one blog discussing SBG, to someone else trying to explain to the world how education is failing, to still another describing their struggles in going paperless and back to another incredible teacher getting their kids into inquiry.
Looking to compartmentalize a bit, I created six folders:
1. My Classes - Stuff that specifically pertains to the classes I teach. This is mostly connect-me-to-the-real-world type information and a lot of it gets reposted for my kids to see.
2. Technology - Pretty self-explanatory, really. I've come across many incredible tid-bits that I can try to integrate into my classroom.
3. Fun - Not education related, but help my brain change gears. Some days, believe it or not, I just need to not focus on teaching.
4. Policy - Educational policy and commentary on how education is being treated by our federal and state governments. I believe it is important to have this information, but these are the ones that make me cry, cuss and spit. I honestly have a hard time believing a lot of what is being done.
This is what makes me want to quit teaching.
5. Classroom - Here are the people who matter, who make a difference. Here I find my inspiration. These are the teachers who love teaching, love their kids and are not afraid to say so. AND they are willing to let me visit their classrooms.
This is is what makes me want to stay in teaching.
I have to say, this has made a huge difference in my outlook.
Probably because I have read everything in my Classroom folder and have 285 unread posts in my Policy folder.
I can really get used to this.