And here we are, August again. I spent the weekend at a large gathering of teachers and the talk inevitably turned to “When do you head back to school?” I answered (usually grumpily), “Monday – though it’s planning days for 2 weeks,” which is somewhere between wishing it were still June and perhaps unfairly using an early August return as a badge of honor and being about as ready to go back as I’ll ever be.
August also coincides with #MTBoSBlaugust. The Mathematics Twitter Blog-o-Sphere – a group of mathematics teachers who share their practice on the internet – is dedicating the month of August to writing a blog a day. It’s spearheaded by DruinOK (Hashtag: that moment when you only know teachers by their Twitter handle). Also gotta shout out Ms. DiMaria, Mrs. Orr, and STEMinist in the Classroom – 3 colleagues who are also rising to the #MTBoSBlaugust challenge.
One of the prompts asks “What do you hope to get out of #MTBoSBlaugust?” While the obvious answer is a sweet book deal and maybe a Netflix series (“Teacher falls down in 1st period a lot! Loses lunch in desk!”), I’m using #MTBoSBlaugust to reboot #teach180. (Sidenote: A couple of colleagues and I wrote an article about our experiences with #teach180. This post is getting strangely meta)
I struggled with #blog180, which is still how I think of #teach180 (a blog a day versus 140 characters and a picture a day. You can guess how that went). I have grand visions of writing out long complex blogs (many of which remain drafted in my head, though their usefulness has long since ended), only to be thwarted by horrible time management and an inability to adult.
So I’m doing what I think good teachers do. I’m cutting out most of my talking and explaining* (with this blog being the exception, I guess) and letting my audience drive the learning. I’m going to post a picture and a few sentences of background context, if necessary, and then let you, gentle reader, ask the questions. I’m hoping that this simplification will engage readers and be both a bit more realistic and sustainable. The more I hear about mathematics blogging, I hope that a slightly boring (OK, really boring) photo every day will be more of a window in my teaching practice than a finely crafted blog that I’ve secretly been writing and rewriting in my head for the last year.
*Ha. Don’t count on it.
**Also, you don’t have to say what you notice and/or wonder about this photo. It’s mostly so that an image shows up when I tweet it. I wouldn’t not give you extra points for doing it, though.