As I was watching the presentation and videos, I couldn't help but think how cool PLNs are. Then I thought, "I should get one started!" And then I had the horrible overhwhelmed feeling that comes almost every day when my principal or TIS or lit coach tells us about 10 more things we are responsible for and 100 more plan times they are going to fill with meetings. One of the blogs I read regarding PLNs commented on how teachers can't help but do anything more than react to everything that is piled on us. We definitely don't have time to personally promote our professional development. I think that really stinks. I would love to get a PLN started and learn from educators across the country and the world! I also think it would be a really cool feeling to know that the experiences (both good and bad) that come from teaching in Parkway School District in St. Louis county are experiences shared from coast to coast. That feeling of connectedness would be an invaluable support on the good days and the bad. I'm hoping through this class I can not only learn about PLNs and how to start one, but also how to find the time to genuinely reap the benefits.

Views: 61

Comment by Laura Wiechert on February 25, 2010 at 1:39pm
Meghan,
I'm new to this process too- but maybe once we are aware of what our PLN is, it will be easier to adapt and use it in the classroom. I agree, as teachers we are bogged down with so many responsibilities, things to do, places to go, people to talk to, etc. But I think what Drew tried to say yesterday in his presentation was, what works for someone else, may not work for you or me. What works for me, may not work for you. When we find what works, it should be easy and comfortable to work with.
I'm looking forward to becoming aware of my PLN and expanding it! Hope you are too!
Comment by Christy Prudence on February 25, 2010 at 3:18pm
Hi Meghan, I am in-between conferences right now and am totally feeling that overwhelmed state that you talk about! I wish I had more time in the day to get everything accomplished personally and professionally. Hopefully we will start to feel more comfortable about PLNs through this course that we won't feel like they are just another thing to stack on our plates. I can see the potential in them!!
Comment by Drew McAllister on March 1, 2010 at 7:26pm
Thanks for being candid, Meghan. The stress and time demands really take their toll. I think something that's both powerful and difficult about getting a PLN together is that it's made up of people. And connections with people, for me at least, are just tough to maintain!

If it helps, this is how I'm going to work on my PLN this semester. I'm blocking out about 30 minutes each week to drop by everyone's blog and drop a note. Then I'm blocking out 15 minutes a day wherever I can get them to write down something, anything, about what I'm reading. I hope that by the end of the week this'll mean I have something to give to the group in a blog post of my own.

You certainly don't have to visit everyone's blog or even blog once a week. I just thought you might like to hear how I'm going to try to manage this. We'll see how well it goes. :) (gee, maybe I'll blog about it) :)
Comment by Drew McAllister on March 2, 2010 at 7:11pm
So, being candid myself, I neglected to work something important into my plan -- reading. *sigh* Well, I'll keep trying. At any rate, I recently "rediscovered" this link on how one teacher participates in her PLN -- thought you might find it interesting.
Comment by Roxanne Warner on March 20, 2010 at 11:59am
Meghan, I completely agree with you that this new endeavor is a bit overwhelming at times. I also feel like I don't even have enough time in the day to do what needs to be done for school and around my house, so how will I have time to comment, blog, and start discussions on my new PLN? However, I do think that we will learn a lot from establishing these networks and I know that I know next to nothing about PLNs. I hope to get a knack for it sooner than later and learn how to incorporate into my weekly routine without it being a hassle. After all, it is a really great concept!

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