I’m afraid I have awoken the dragon. I am visible, standing on a shifting terrain. But I don’t think I am alone.
This one scene from the movie The Desolation of Smaug connected for me as I become more engaged within social networks and communities. In my effort to model how a connected educator works and learns in digital spaces, the dragon knows who I am. The pile of gold under which the dragon sleeps brings forth the image of Twitter and other social networks – with it’s immense volume, rolling and shimmering, threatening to bury me in a landslide, while I search for that one nugget of something precious. I know, as Bilbo does at the end of this clip, that the dragon sees me now!
In a recent post by Seth Godin, there is fear in being seen, being judged in social media spaces and for the digital trails we leave. But Godin reminds us that this is the only “generous way to change your world”. When we stand for something, as Bilbo makes every effort to do in the movie, we can alter our educational spaces, one tweet at a time. By modelling and risking judgement in digital spaces, educators allow others to watch and learn, take that leap across the shifting pile of gold, and do it visibly, as Bilbo decides to do when he takes off that ring!
I found many nuggets in the pile of gold rolling past me this week. A post by Brian Szatabnki (Edutopia A Ticket to Ride) caught my eye. He shared how his ‘leap of faith’ changed his perspective and teaching practice. His five goals for 2015 include
- Honour my curiosities
- Break bread with colleagues
- Reflect on failures
- Focus on learning experiences over learning data
- Thrive on the enormity of the challenge
As I awaken the dragon, I can certainly envision the enormity of the challenge! But, I’ll keep these five goals in mind as I blog, tweet, share and engage in digital spaces. I will honour my curiosities by following people and organizations that excite my interests. I will break bread with colleagues as I engage in twitter chats, post comments, and share my thoughts around digital spaces. I will reflect on failures within blogging posts and comments. I will focus on learning experiences and share these with my students so they can learn with me. Finally, and toughest of all because this dragon is pretty daunting to look in the eye, I will thrive on the enormity of the challenge and be brave in my visibility.
How will you awaken your dragon? How will you share an idea to generously change your educational world for the better?