Don’t Break the Chain!

After “handing in” my blog for assessment as part of my University course in late November, my blog has been in a virtual lockdown for the last few months whilst it was being marked.

Marking was completed about two weeks ago; however I have found it difficult to get back into blogging. I think this is because when you stop doing something it becomes easier to miss a day and then another and then another and eventually months go by without doing what you wanted to do.

This ties in with Jerry Seinfield’s productivity tip “Don’t break the chain”. For this tip all you require is a big wall calendar and a marker pen of your choice. You write at the top of your calendar something you want to achieve (e.g. exercise, read a novel for 30 minutes, practise playing the piano for 30 minutes etc.). When you have achieved your goal you put a big cross over that date. After a few days you have a chain and your goal is to not break it. Brad Issac sums up the power of this simple technique in this blog post stating that ‘the consistent daily action that builds extraordinary outcomes’.

Charlie McDonnell (charlieissocoollike) explains how he uses this concept in this video.

As I go into my final teaching placement I don’t think I’ll be able to blog everyday, but I think my target will be to spend 10 minutes a day planning things to blog and then share a few of these every week.

See you soon!

What is a blog for, anyway?

Blog community

Hughes Syndrome (2012) Blog [online]. Available from: [Accessed: 14th October 2012].

For about a year or so I have taken an interest in various different blogs. I have found them an interesting insight into a whole paraphernalia of stuff – topics ranging from ancient history, to technology to rating school dinners. But that’s really as far I’ve gone with considering the idea of blogs. In other words: I’ve been a consumer not a producer.

However, last week this started to change.

You see, this was the week when I started the last series of ICT sessions during my final year studying BA (Hons) Primary Education at the University of Northampton. During our first lesson we were asked to start a blog on our experiences of ICT in education.

My first reaction to this was positive. I found setting up the blog a straightforward process, although I must admit that I tried about sixty different themes for the blog… and hated them all.  I have finally found a theme that I like, although this may change!

With the mechanics completed, I’ve spent the last few days considering what a blog actually does. I watched an interesting TED speech by Mena Trott that really got me thinking. In her speech she asked her audience to:

think about blogs, think about what they are, what you thought of them and then actually do it.

So this is why I am thinking about what a blog actually is. From looking at other people’s blogs I understand that they present information, but I had a feeling that they do more than this. To shed some light on my concerns I decided to look up “blog” in the dictionary. This being an online project, I felt it would be pertinent to use an online dictionary, so I looked up the term on Oxford Dictionary online.

I was presented with the following definition:

A personal website or web page on which an individual records opinions, links to other sites, etc. on a regular basis.

I thought this was a good definition to start with and it reassured me. I’ve written about my opinion before and had people deem it good enough to be published. But I did feel that this definition was missing something.

So I turned to the Collins online dictionary, which provided this definition:

A journal written on-line and accessible to users of the internet.

This definition completed the jigsaw for me. Blogs are not just an individual’s opportunity to put stuff online, but they are a chance for the blogger and readers to share ideas and interact as a journey unfolds.

For some people this journey will be about their experiences as a polar explorer, for others it will involve documenting selling records without being signed to a record label. For me this journey will primarily be about ICT in education, mostly reflecting on issues touched on at University. But, I plan to also bring in other things I’ve found out about education or information from the use of ICT in the wider world that I find interesting.

I hope you enjoy the ride.