Looking at my short lived career in education, I have really been extremely fortunate to be surrounded by such inspiring educators that have really helped to shape who I am today. If it were not for these people in my life, I would not be able to have accomplished so many things in my classroom and professional career. My PD started off with the people I saw every day and those who took the time to train me and give me advice on how to use technology. They were my solid foundation and gave me the knowledge and confidence to step out of my comfort zone. It is because of them, that I slowly began to build my PLN by joining social networks and putting myself 'out there' to ask questions and meet 'strangers' who would eventually become important keys to my professional development.
Most of my colleagues and friends would probably describe me as being fairly good at technology, but as many people know, the more your learn...the more you realize how much you don't know. That's what has kept me motivated to keep connected to other educators, to share at conferences, and to take as many PD opportunities that I can find the time/money for.
I recently began to reflect on how my PLN has impacted me and thought about the small contributions that I was able to 'pay forward' to others. Everything I know is because there was another teacher, student, and friend who was willing to share freely and openly. Whether they know it or not, they are my mentors and I am thankful that my PLN continues to grow everyday as I gain more connections.
Now, what's the real point of this post? First of all, it is to thank my PLN for "Daring to Share" and for being the agents of change for all of our students. You have truly impacted my life and my students are better for it. Second, I want to make a commitment to do as much sharing and creating as I do consuming. I want to continue to be a part of the movement of change and help to spread the good work of others. This may be in the form of a tweet, adding to my circles, posting to the Edmodo communities, or even a commitment to contributing to my blog. For those of you who are like me and do more consuming than creating, I dare you to share the great work that you are doing. Together we truly are making a difference.