It just occurred to me that if you don’t follow me on Twitter (shame on you!), you might wonder why the steady stream of blog posts has slowed.
Since joining the MathTwitterBlogosphere, I’d been wondering what I could add to a community that I was currently only taking from — their thoughts, activities and enthusiasm. A few people suggested starting a blog, but I wasn’t sure that I had anything to say that hadn’t already been said by people far more eloquent than me. In the afterglow of NCTM 2016 and with an encouraging word from Tracy Zager, I started thinking seriously about blogging. Then in May, I came across #MTBoS30 — the 30 day blogging challenge started by Anne Schwartz — and so I dived right in.
After successfully finishing #MTBoS30 I wanted a new #MTBoS challenge. John Rowe and I (well, mostly John!) are busy putting something together. We hope you’ll get involved; more very soon.
Five things I learned from #MTBoS30
How do I know what I think until I see what I say?
— EM Forster
- Sometimes I am so incredibly stupid. I know that writing clarifies thoughts; the best way for me to progress with mathematical research is to write down, organise and explain what I know so far to help identify gaps in my understanding. So why wouldn’t this be true for other areas of my professional life? I tell my students to write, write, write. I should take my own advice more often.
- It is easier for me to commit to do something every day than to try and remember to do it frequently. Since I’ve stopped posting every day, I’ve written many great posts in my head — but no-one can read them there (right, Elham :))?
- Given that this blog helps me clarify my own thoughts, I shouldn’t be concerned about how many people are reading (which is why I am definitely not obsessively monitoring the statistics …. right). But, since I can tell that people are looking (if not reading), it’s nice to know whether I’m just shouting into the wind or saying something that lingers. So now, when someone else’s blog post or idea resonates with me, I try to comment on their blog or by tweeting.
- A blog is a great repository of explained ideas — for myself and for others. For example, it was easy to share resources from a recent teacher PD session by writing a post about it. It is much more coherent than a link to a Dropbox folder (although that’s useful too). Plus, other people benefit — including me next time I run the session.
- (I wrote the section header, walked to the photocopier, then came back and forgot what #5 in the list was going to be …)
Summary of #MTBoS30 posts
- Puzzles and games
- How students learn
- Words on teaching
- On writing
- Friday Five