Posts Tagged ‘Blogging’

Five years to a modicum of renown

April 24, 2017 2 comments

“So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”
The Great Gatsby
F. Scott Fitzgerald

Today marks five years that I’ve been writing this blog. To commemorate the accomplishment my endurance, I thought I’d make a list of the top five things that have improved for Oklahoma schools during this time.

5 gif

Then I decided not to; I’m not sure I could list five.

Funding has fallen to the point that school districts are decreasing the number of days of attendance. We still have A-F Report Cards, though we hope they will be kinder and gentler (and less tied to poverty) when we have new tests. We still have our annual fight with voucher supporters who call us names and block us from public venues. And we still have legislators thick-skinned enough to run for election but so thin-skinned* that they can’t bear to hear of our frustration. Worse yet, we’ve continued to send many of them back to the Capitol so they can try to replace real science with a Folger’s substitute.

second cup at home.gif

What has changed is that more people are sharing their experiences directly with policy makers. Teachers, parents, and students all have given their voices to the cause. What has this budget cut meant? How has that policy change impacted school climate?

Thanks to all of us, the people we elect have better understanding of the struggle than ever before. The result is that our state leaders now tweet pictures doing what educators have been doing for decades – catching up on work on a Sunday evening.

I don’t doubt that their work is hard. After five years, though, I’m too tired to hope for a better plan outcome right now. So instead of the post I had intended to write, here are some stats on my blog that probably interest only me.

796,846 total page views
10,970 views in one day

Total stats

That’s an average of about 13,000 page views per month. As the bar chart above shows, some months have much higher traffic than others. Here’s a better illustration.

month by month stats.png

In June of 2014, the blog had over 68,000 page views. Something about a dentist and a primary election may have helped there. Hard to say.

I also enjoy responding to the comments I receive – the ones I allow to post anyway. Believe it or not, I have deleted a few nasty attacks from time to time. Let’s face it – not all of the people who follow and read this blog are fans, of me or of public education.

5897 Twitter followers
4265 Facebook likes
606 email recipients
115 WordPress followers

Twitter Blog Count
FB Blog Count


In spite of the modicum of renown my friends at the OCPA say I’ve earned as a blogger, I can’t tell you that what I write moves the needle. I don’t wake up and see how much better it is. I’ve made great friends in advocacy. I frequently discuss ideas with other writers, many of whom have better blogs and more readers.

I’ve learned some pleasant (and unpleasant) things about myself. I’ve even advanced in my career during this time. Because of that, I’m more focused day-to-day on what I can do for the students in Mid-Del than for the students in Oklahoma. I have to be.

And I still need a constructive hobby that isn’t directly tied to my career.records in the rectangle.gif

I don’t know where we go from here. Maybe our leaders really will find a way to help schools. Never say never, right?

For those of you who stop by and read, I can’t thank you enough. For those of you who fight the fight, I hope you’ll keep going. The job is never done.

*Not you. Definitely not you. I’m obviously referring to somebody else.

2015 Edu-blogger awards

December 8, 2015 Comments off

This is trite, but let me say it’s an honor to be nominated – in two categories. For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about, the finalists for the 2015 Edublogger awards have been named. And yes, this is a real thing.

Overall, Oklahoma blogs have been named as finalists in several categories. In addition to my nominations, here are some others for whom you could vote:

I made several nominations myself, and I see that some of the blogs (or posts) I submitted didn’t make it through to the finals. What’s even cooler is that there are blogs on here I have never read before. You know what that means….

New words!

One thing I have loved about blogging since I started in 2012 is that I find myself getting connected with other writers from within Oklahoma and from around the country.

For example, in the category of “Most Influential Blog Post,” I nominated an Oklahoma friend (#totalhomer), who wasn’t named a finalist. However, my current favorite national writer (Peter Greene, author of Curmudgication) was named a finalist for his post, Stop Defending Music. I use this post in my graduate Curriculum and Instruction class each semester.

One thing to remember as you look at the Oklahoma entrants (and maybe peruse a few other blogs to expand your knowledge base) is that every blog began somewhere. Even Diane Ravitch was a new blogger once. In 2012 (the same year I started), she came in fifth in the category of new blogs, garnering a whopping 111 votes.Ravitch in Fifth

Currently, her blog has over 24,000,000 page views. For comparison’s sake, I’m approaching 600,000 all-time views.

My point in writing about this is not to encourage you to go vote for me. It’s actually to encourage you to begin writing. Start your own blog. Whether you want to advocate for the profession, showcase your classroom, or discuss innovation, just get started. You don’t have to post every day. You don’t have to keep a consistent schedule even.

This is the Internet. We’ll be here, whenever you decide to return. And so will your words.

Go Vote!

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