I really enjoy blogging. I like informal writing & reflections. I even enjoy creative writing. Academic writing is more challenging for me.
In June I received an e-mail from EdSurge asking if I would like to represent South Dakota for their Fifty States Project. I spoke on the phone with the editor about my current activities and classes at school and we narrowed the topic down to Makerspaces and set a deadline.
Fortunately, the work I did for my in-depth TIE session on Makerspaces had me thinking about my personal journey into Makerspaces. I still struggled with how to organize the article, I didn’t know what was good background information and what didn’t make sense without supporting information. Did I mention that academic or technical writing is challenging for me? Fortunately, my husband is an English major and has a lot of practice proof-reading and editing. My first draft was quite a bit over the suggested length.
To help my article meet the length requirement and for it to be more organized and to the point there were quite a few things the editor cut or trimmed— that’s part of the process. This was actually really challenging for me. The parts that we needed to trim were the areas where I told about who inspired me, all of the places or people who provided funding to build our space, and the individuals who helped at our space on Wednesdays.
The whole process had me thinking about myself as an educator. I really like supporting others, celebrating them and encouraging them, acknowledging the contributions that they make. It is very hard for me to ‘celebrate’ myself. One of the things I had to adjust to when I became more active on Twitter was that it isn’t ‘bragging’. As educators we all do something amazing and unique and should be willing to share that with others.
Travis Lape is who introduced me to Makerspaces and one thing that Travis always says is that you have to tell your story. What you are doing may challenge someone else’s thinking, it may provide them with a starting point, it might spark an idea… you won’t know unless you are willing to share.
I am going to challenge myself to share more… to tell my story through different mediums and to different audiences.
Here is a link to my EdSurge article: What to Put in Your Makerspace (and How to Pay for It)