I would be a liar if I told you that I am not amazed at the amount of Twitter followers I have. I would be a liar if I told you I didn’t know how many people roughly subscribe to this blog. It has astounded me for a long time that anyone, other than my mother and my husband, find value in me. Yet, those numbers don’t mean much if I let them mean too much.
Because we are bigger than the follower count we have. We are bigger than the number of comments we get. We are bigger than the favorites, the mentions, and even the likes that we can garner in our lives. The more influence we artificially have on Twitter/Facebook/Instagram or whatever tool you use, the more we should be doing to lift others up. Because all of those people are the ones that are holding up the very platform we stand on.
I do not take my job as a teacher lightly. I do not take my job as a writer lightly. I do not take my job as a speaker lightly, nor for granted. When I get to speak to others, it is something that I value on such a deep level that I tend to get emotional, because I am put in a position where I can possibly help others. Help someone else not feel crazy. Help someone else not feel so alone. Help someone else by being a friend.
When someone reads my blog, I am humbled. When someone reaches out, I am honored.
So if you are a connected educator, whatever that may mean, I hope you are using your influence for good. I hope that you are using your position, no matter how small you may feel it is, to lift others up. To make connections. To help others share their voice.
We all started with 0 followers. We all started blogging for ourselves and no one else. We all started from a place of hoping that someone would notice us and make our worlds better. So make sure you are still noticing others, because this isn’t about us, it’s about the kids and making their education better. And sometimes it seems that we forget that in the midst of our own seeming popularity.
I am a passionate teacher in Oregon, Wisconsin, USA but originally from Denmark, who has taught 4th, 5th, and 7th grade. Proud techy geek, and mass consumer of incredible books. Creator of the Global Read Aloud Project, Co-founder of EdCamp MadWI, and believer in all children. The second edition of my first book “Passionate Learners – How to Engage and Empower Your Students” is available for pre-order now. Second book“Empowered Schools, Empowered Students – Creating Connected and Invested Learners” is out now from Corwin Press. Join our Passionate Learners community on Facebook and follow me on Twitter @PernilleRipp.