References to TED Talks come up over and over again when ELT teachers interact, whether online or at conferences. Without having conducted a proper poll, it seems to me that teachers watch talks on a wide variety of topics and do not limit themselves to those directly related to education.
This brought me back to Bill Ferriter’s post on The Tempered Radical blog: “Are YOU Intentionally Creating a TED in Your Head?”
Bill Ferriter writes:
“…when we are building our own learning networks using social tools like blogs, Twitter and Facebook, we need to intentionally reach beyond the thinking of leading educators.”
The way I understood his post is that paying attention to people from outside your field is good for you. Really good for you. Social media makes these people available.
So what about the TED in MY head?
For starters, I follow The Tempered Radical blog. While Ferriter is most certainly an educator, he’s not an English language teacher. He posts about many issues that on the surface aren’t relevant to me as a teacher, such as the problems of the American Education System, which I am not a part of. Yet his blog is fascinating and thought provoking.
Then there are two blogs I follow who actually are written by language teachers but teaching English / Spanish isn’t the focus of their blogs. “Humbly Human” and “Be the Change” are blogs that inspire, blogs that remind me to smile. The only problem is that they haven’t been posting recently – where have you gone, you two lovely ladies?
And that’s it.
All the many blogs I follow are closely related to ELT. While it’s true that sometimes I will find a recipe for a carrot cake or poem spreading its wings for the first time on some of these blogs, they are blogs focused on teaching English as a foreign language.
Theoretically, I could subscribe to the blogs of some of the authors I post about every Saturday. Some of the writers I enjoy so much in the New Yorker magazine have blogs too.
Except that I can’t.
Those of you whose blogs I follow know that I’m a dedicated follower. If I tweet about a post that means I have read it. I’m blessed with a diverse PLN that has a lot to give.
Oh, and I work too.
Listening / watching TED talks is not something I do on a daily basis. The TED in MY head will also have to mainly remain a thing that happens occasionally when the time is right to follow a link and read a different kind of post entirely. That does happen and it’s great when it does.
Are YOU creating a TED in YOUR head?