elearning Island part 2…failing?

I began last weeks post with a quotation from Rebecca Blood (here) which I will use again because she had a very early insight (1999) into what blogs were to become

… a valuable filtering function for their readers. The web has been, in effect, pre-surfed for them. Out of the myriad web pages slung through cyberspace, weblog editors pick out the most mind-boggling, the most stupid, the most compelling.

In many respects I see myself as a sifter of information useful to educators with some commentary or reflection from practice.

My early blogs picked up on random ideas rather than a theme – people that return to elearning Island now see (I hope!)  threads of thought which I listed previously as

  • Moodle and various online teaching and learning applications that don’t become data-storage centres
  •  change in curriculum and assessment that takes online and social-media into account
  •  teacher development particularly involving Twitter and other digital applications
  •  digital citizenship

The main failure of  (or challenge to) eLearningIsland has been to generate commentary around the issues raised in the blog. Occasional posts will generate some commentary but often it is an exercise in silence – sometimes I felt like Shirley Valentine talking to the wall!

But as time evolved I began to understand eLearningIsland as a Personal Learning Network. PLN is a term I first heard from Tom Whitby, another blogger and prolific Tweeter.

It really does not matter, if my blog post fails generate a conversation.

I am learning, reflecting and writing at least once weekly. I am developing my Personal Learning Network and offer it as something for others to read, commentary or not. It is the publishing of these thoughts which is is important.

That writing and placing of it  in the public sphere is the most significant aspect of blogging and indeed tweeting.

I look forward to the day when teacher attendees at interview have the confidence to illustrate their continuing professional development with their blog posts and Twitter stream!

Commentary received or not!


Photo Credit http://www.whatsbestforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=2791&d=1327702080



  1. Donal O' Mahony


    Thanks for taking the time to reply – and that is the crux about blogging, family life, my work as a teacher and other professional interests – TIME! I do agree that involvement with others is what raises the game….Regards Donal

  2. Tom Whitby

    D – Keep in mind that the development of a Personal Learning Network is not a passive exercise. Your blog is one step in a huge staircase of collaborative learning. Commenting on the blogs of others and referring to your own blog as well as using Twitter to present your blog are two ways to generate traffic. reflecting and presenting ideas on your blog is great for your own head, but with the involvement of others it takes it to a different level. Keep thinking, reflecting, & commenting, and your Personal Learning Network will increase along with your Learning.