This is my 100th post! I started this blog over a year ago to promote my first children’s book. That is the total, honest truth. But being authentic to myself, the purpose of the blog quickly changed.
I live in a retirement community near a major university. Many of the people in my neighborhood are retired professors and savvy about the book publishing and promotion world. When my first book came out, the women in my knitting group told me I needed a presence on the web to promote my book. They told me I needed to start a blog. They actually chased me out of the knitting group that day, and sent me home to start my blog.
The only problem was, I had never been on a blog! I didn’t know what a blog was. So, I started to do some research and by the end of the day I had opened my blog.
The-Educational-Journey started as a vehicle to promote my books, but it quickly moved beyond that. It took me about five minutes into creating my blog, that I realized it could be a platform for something I am truly passionate about, authentic learning – also referred to as project-based learning. (I am very passionate about my books, but honestly not that passionate about marketing.)
Even though I was retired, I realized that everywhere I looked I still saw projects and authentic opportunities. My blog gave me the platform to share these ideas.
I keep thinking that eventually I will run out of ideas. Eventually, my weekly posts will become monthly. This might happen, but now I kind of doubt it. If anything, I am seeing more and more authentic project ideas every day.
Ironically another hobby has “upped my game.” I joined a scrapbooking group in my community and have learned to photograph everything. You just never know when you will want a photo of something you did or saw for a scrapbook page. Not surprisingly, these photos also inspire ideas for authentic learning and projects.
As a retired (but forever) teacher, I now have time to “stop and smell the roses.” And each and every one of these roses gives me an idea for a new authentic experience. And authentic ideas often lead down a path to unexpected new and different ideas.
If you think about it, I photograph things I am interested in or passionate about. These photos represent authenticity to me. I don’t photograph things that don’t interest or inspire me. So, staying authentic keeps me engaged and excited and learning. This is the way authentic learning works! It grabs you, engages you, and doesn’t let you go. (And if I ever post a photograph of a snake, you can be sure my husband took the picture, I am having an “off” week, and decided to blog about project ideas with snakes – YUCK!)