I didn’t know I had a story to share until I started sharing it. Until I started writing. Until I started speaking up. I didn’t know that the thoughts I had every day or the small ideas I came up with would matter outside of those 4 classroom walls. Not until I shared. Not until I had the courage to find my voice. Not until I hit publish and those things I had thought by myself were no longer my private thoughts. They were now public. They were now searchable. They were now open for judgment.
It still scares me to this day.
It still stops me at times.
There are conversations that I will never have on this blog. Topics I will never broach. And yet, those that once seemed terrifying sometimes lose their fear factor and find their way out into the open, just like that. And sometimes those thoughts start conversations that I could never have dreamed of that led me down a new path.
Yet, this blog is not just about me. It is about the kids that I get to teach and their stories that I get to share. The little things they ask me to change so that we can be better educators. And so I write for them because when I found my voice I knew I had to help my students find theirs.
So this past weekend when I sat at the amazing WGEDD conference with other educators and they told me of what they do in their classrooms, I asked them if they had shared those ideas in some way. Is there a place where others may find their genius? The answer was no. It often is, and I couldn’t help but wonder; what if?
What if we all found the courage to share more?
What if we started by sharing those small ideas that make our lives better? Those little things that may not seem flashy, or innovative, or any other buzz worthy adjectives you can think of. Those ideas that just work, that make our jobs easier, that make education better for our learners.
What if we found our courage because we realized that we are experts in our own right and what we have to share is worthwhile? That we do not have to wait for someone to give us a title, to pay us money, or to even give us permission (although if you need that; here have mine).
What if we found our courage to share more so that our students would also share?
There are too many who are silent. Who are afraid. Who do not think that what they do can help others. But they are wrong. Together we are better, and we never know what little idea may make the biggest difference to someone else.
So share your thoughts. Share your dreams. Share you. Because no one else is.
If you are wondering why there seems to be a common thread to so many of my posts as of late, it is because I am working on two separate literacy books. While the task is daunting and intimidating, it is incredible to once again get to share the phenomenal words of my students as they push me to be a better teacher. Those books will be published in 2017 hopefully, so until then if you like what you read here, consider reading my book Passionate Learners – How to Engage and Empower Your Students. Also, if you are wondering where I will be in the coming year or would like to have me speak, please see this page.