Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Sunday, August 19, 2012

My First Blog Post (My Journey to Today)...

I have been putting this off because it makes me very nervous to write an actual blog post.  This blog was created on July 18th, but has not included an actual blog post from me. 

Little steps have been taken to create this blog.  I have been looking at other blogs, reading Tweets on Twitter, and communicating with other educators.  This past summer has been a life-changer for me and "ReadWonder" is just one of those changes.

I finished my 21st year of teaching last spring.  It was a difficult year and to be honest I was probably at one of my lowest points professionally.  I was ready to close the door to my classroom, head home for the summer, and not think about teaching for the next ten weeks.  Well, that was the farthest thing from what actually happened.

Last spring I was curious about Twitter.  I signed up for an account (much to the dismay of my teenagers) and started to poke around.  While at a soccer game for my son, I Tweeted about the book Fake Mustache.  I wasn't sure who would read it because I didn't have any followers.  The details aren't clear today, but somehow Donalyn Miller saw my Tweet and as they say the rest is history. 

Today I am at 208 followers of the most motivating and inspirational educators, authors, and teachers.  Twitter has opened up a whole new world to me and there wasn't a better time that this could have happened.  I feel more energized and excited for the upcoming school year than I have been in years. 

There are so many people to thank for this change in my professional life.  Mentioned earlier is Donalyn Miller who had been a mentor to me ever since I read her book The Book Whisperer.  Two other people that have me in awe are Colby Sharp and Mr. Schu.  It has been an incredible summer following their tweets and keeping up with their blogs.  Their excitement over reading, books, and teaching can be felt through the E-Waves!!! 

During my twenty-one years of teaching I have always had a passion for reading and books.  I love both books for my students and books for my own pleasure.  It is surprising to me that my love for literacy is even bigger and more intense than ever before.  My fourth graders are in for a year of wonderful books, extraordinary characters, and more reading than they have ever done. 

There are so many more people that I could thank for getting me started on this new journey of Twitter, blogs, and sharing electronically (Learning 2.0), but I don't think I can list all 208 of you.  Hopefully you know who you are.

If you do read this post and have any suggestions, I'm an open book so please feel free to give any feedback.  I think I now know how my student writers might feel when I ask them to share their writing.  It can be very scary, but I think I'm ready to hit the publish button...


  1. Congrats on your first post, Patrick! Twitter is such an excellent place, a spot to recharge and inspire. Glad to have you as part of our PLN!

  2. Love this. I think most people have a similar "eek...where do I start and what do I say" kind of moment. I agree that Twitter is fabulous PD. I was turned off for a while - one of those people who joined years ago but then got sick of people tweeting about their coffee or hamburger purchase so quit. I like following many of the people you listed. I also like to throw in some artists, musicians, thinkers, Brits...just to keep things interesting! All my fifth graders last year had blogs. We are doing the same again this year as well as starting a class twitter account. I will be showing them this post as an example of life long learning. Thanks for sharing!

  3. This is exactly how I feel about Twitter and the wonderful folks that make a PLN so awesome. I do not have other teachers in my building that are as excited about books and reading as I am and I love it that there are so many great people out there that are excited and will help me continue to be excited about reading. Congratulations on your first blog post!

  4. I was in a very similar place last winter. I took a Web 2.0 course and had to join Twitter because of it. That was the best thing that happend to me. I was reinvented and felt an enthusiasm for my job that I haven't had in a while. Joining Twitter also gave me a kick in the pants about my blog. I created it with another Media Specialist and I really got motivated to take it over and make it my own. Congrats on the blog post and your journey!