Well this is it, today is my blog's first birthday, and I wanted to take the opportunity to thank everyone who has visited, shared this space with others, offered advice, kind words and support.
The space was originally set up in response to coursework requirements at university, and if I am honest for a long time I struggled to find a purpose for it and so it lay abandoned and lonely. In September 2006, I found myself in the rarest of positions, I was without a class of my own, covering PPA with a colleague, while teaching ICT as a subject specialism across the school, in key stages 1 and 2 with the occasional adventure with foundation stage students. My learning took a steep curve, new strategies emerged or were required not only to manage students and their learning in the ICT suite, but also to share, store and evaluate their work, as well as opportunities to engage with tools first hand that I had not used previously. This space since last December, has become a valuable professional development tool, somewhere to think aloud, reflect upon, share, sometimes to sound off about but overall to log my thoughts, somewhere to wander and think about what might be, while celebrating the achievements of my students.
The tone and content may have changed a little since September with a return to the classroom full time and teaching and learning with a class of my own again but with this has come the opportunity to add continuity, whole curriculum context and the use of a base to apply and reflect on how earlier thoughts work during the day to days of classroom life.
I often visit my Feedburner account curious to find out about my visitors, subscribers, what they are reading and what they are searching for when directed to my blog. I have been interested over the time I have been writing to find that a common search query that leads folk here, even if only for a brief stay, goes something along the lines of...
"ICT Recommended hours"
What I have found increasingly exciting however are the number of visitors who now arrive here, not searching for ICT related issues alone. Although being primarily my thoughts as an ICT subject leader, what I hope my blog offers are embedded situations and thoughts that leave visitors much less concerned with the recommended hours per week or per year students should spend doing ICT , but stimulate thought about how ICTs could be used differently as tools to support work across the whole curriculum.
I cannot imagine many sites being visited through the search string
"pencil paper glue recommended hours"
Looking back over the year to date, as a professional development tool, deciding to keep a blog has to be one of the best decisions I have made as a teacher. Keeping a paper based "learning log" or "diary," as I used to do does not draw the same level of support or common interest. The journey I have engaged in over the past 12 months has not been alone, but thankfully has been enhanced by the support of colleagues who visit, have offered comments, shared their thoughts or through their linking to this space have encouraged and enabled me to share my work and adventures with a wider audience. I would like to thank everyone who over the past 12 months has supported and encouraged me, through their comments and promotion of the space. Hopefully you will continue to visit through 2008 and beyond. Thanks, :o)
Now for a song, courtesy of ErFinanza, GreyWorldwide and YouTube