Until recently I had never read a blog. I always assumed that the people writing them somehow felt superior about their opinions and wrote to feel like their thoughts were influencing society. I assumed that education blogs were going to be filled with teachers who felt like their methods in education were king. They would bash or praise new research to fit their pedagogy. I learned after reading and visiting many pages that blogs, at least in the education realm, are a lot less self-centered than I thought. I’m not sure where this negative connotation of blogs came from, but it was shattered after seeing the community surrounding popular blogs. There are quite a few blogs that don’t even give opinions, but rather are full of tips and information to drive the progress of education forward.
All teachers want to stay on top of new research, controversial topics, discussions in the profession and up-to-date with new practices and programs. Cult of Pedagogy sifts through articles, research journals and papers, government documents, and even tests new technology to compile the most all-encompassing blog site. They offer this information in multiple ways such as podcasts, videos, and of course the classic blog post. The blog is connected through forms of social media such as Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook and more, making it even more accessible. This expanse of quality information can easily improve the knowledge, creativity and awareness of all individuals involved with education. It offers resources for not only teachers, TAs, and administrators, but parents and others who are invested in the progression and success of the education system. My favourite part about this blog is that it doesn’t cater to any specific niche or part of the education profession. Any level, any aspect, whether it be parent communication, time management and organisation or the classics on how to improve student learning-they’re all covered. Anyone who has a interest in education can find something useful and new.
The education system can never be perfect. Every student, every teacher, school, district, is different and they all carry unique needs and opinions. So, considering the impossibility of perfecting the system, there will always downfalls. Dropout Nation looks at everything contributing to the erosion of the school system in America. Although this site focuses on the effects on the American education system and all that it encompasses, the rest of the world (considering it is at the focus of the global stage and affects all other countries) should take notice. This blog uses everything at its disposal to bring to light the failings of the American public school system, including current events such as the emergence of the Black Lives Matter movement. Dropout Nation is committed to improving the future of its country’s youth through the education of all of its citizens. Scientific research, studies and statistics, journalism and frank looks into the consequences of the procedures implemented in the public sector strengthen the messages of this blog. I am a firm proponent for equality, and the fact that it is a common undertone to much of the content on this site made it even more impactful for me as a reader. If we, as a society, wish to progress towards equality, equity, tolerance, and generally improving the quality of life of all our citizens, securing these in the education systems of all nations would certainly be a logical place to start. Dropout Nation reports the facts and the incentive for everyone, especially teachers to start making changes for a better future.
As an educator, it’s impossible for any one individual to have all the resources required by our students. The blogging universe can be a resource containing many other resources. A good example of this is Teen College Education. As a future high school teacher, I will be ushering students on to the next phase of their lives- for most of them this is a post-secondary institution. Teen College Education offers information in every aspect of a student’s future. From their days in high school, thinking about applications, how to cope with exam stress, to post-graduation from their institution whether it be resume construction or internships. Being aware of its existence as an educator, counsellor or administrator can widen the scope of students it is available to. As a student, I can get personal use of it now and later pass on its benefits to my students. This resource can be everything a prospective post-secondary student would need to navigate their scholarly endeavours.