He only earns his freedom and his life Who takes them every day by storm.
– JoHann Wolfgang von Goethe
Up until about four weeks ago, I was keeping a sticky note on my laptop with a running list of post topics I wanted to tackle in this yearlong endeavor to document what I know as I know it now.
About two weeks ago, that list started another life in Evernote as I attempted to design a workflow that would sync across my devices.
A few stray thoughts started piling up in the journal I’ve been keeping for the last few years. Crossing a few pages, they’re tangential verbal doodles on this or that topic about which I’d like to firm up my thinking in some sort of public space.
Early last week, I found myself making a bulleted list of four ideas for TIK on a paper towel in a friend’s kitchen.
Yesterday, I wrote an idea on the back of a receipt.
Today, across three chapters or journal articles I’m reading for classes, I’ve jotted down half a dozen post ideas.
This is all to say, my brain is stormy.
It’s frustrating and wonderful.
A few minutes ago, one of my SLA students who’s now in her freshman year of college asked me if it was weird to be a student instead of a teacher.
I told her not really.
Over the last eight years in the classroom, I worked hard to maintain a reflective practice and to build a habit of learning and information grazing that would continue to push me to think about what it was I thought about teaching and learning and how they relate to education.
This space, this next nine months of my life are going to be a whole other kind of heffalump.
What was a piece of my day sandwiched between unit design and grading has become that which consumes my day.
I am a consumer of information on a scale at which life would not allow over the last few years. There wasn’t space in either my brain or my day to eat as many ideas as I have over the last 48 hours.
While I love it, I’m also realizing the requirements of shift this new new environ of intellect brings about.
As the head of a classroom, the ideas with which I was playing spread out over days or weeks. Expounding on project design for my students meant I was able to speak to it over the entirety of the process. “Here’s my idea,” I could say and follow it up with, “here’s the plan,” then, “here’s how it’s going,” and finally, “here’s what happened and what I would do differently.”
For all of the demands inside and outside of the classroom, I was able to ruminate on ideas to a different extent.
Starting now, I need to switch gears.
The ideas are coming at me at light speed now. If I’m not diligent at marking them and my thoughts on them down as they arise, I’ll miss them.
Not yet in this archiving of my mental stance on ideas has it been so key to keep track of what I know (or what I think I know).
Time to cull the paper towels, receipts, Evernotes, journal entries and the like. I’m sitting at the onset of a perfect storm. It would be a shame not to get pictures for later.