If you are following along with the #D100BloggerPD, you know I'm third to post on the topic, "What Inspires You." Check out Post 1 and Post 2 from some great bloggers in my district! You can also follow the hashtag on Twitter as educators will be posting all month (9 in all) about this topic!
One fun thing about this #D100BloggerPD is it gives bloggers that write about all different topics a chance to work together on a joint project. I blog about math, some others blog about literacy/reading, while others might be more general education bloggers. I love the idea that new readers might come across my blog and realize it's not *only* about math, or even that math isn't as scary as they thought! :)
So while the topic is "What Inspires You," I am taking the opportunity to blog about what inspires me in math education. Many of my regular readers know about #MTBoS, in which case, you will just find this as a love letter to something you already know is great! Others of you have never heard of #MTBoS and I hope this will give you some new ideas, resources, and/or people to be inspired by! If you follow me on Twitter, this will explain why I often include the hashtag!
So, what is #MTBoS? The hashtag stands for MathTwitterBlogosphere. It's an online community of math teachers that blog and/or tweet to share resources, get feedback, and create with each other. There are some pretty big name math teacher-celebrities (if there is such a thing) that are part of MTBoS. For example, Dan Meyer is a pretty big name in math education. ((By the way, one time Dan tweeted about one of my PD presentations. You can read about that here!)) Perhaps you have watched his Ted Talk. Talk about of inspirational! If you have never seen it, stop reading this and watch:
The cool thing about #MTBoS is, you just decide you want to be part of it, and boom, you are. There's no formal sign-up or initiation fee. There are a few places that you can add your name (like here and here) to so that others can find you, but you can also just start tweeting and include the hashtag!
I joke that being active on Twitter has been the best PD I've *never* been to. I can't even quantify the amount of time I've saved from "borrowing" ideas from other amazing teachers.
Here are just a few AWESOME resources that I've stumbled across created by people in #MTBoS:
Would You Rather
Nix the Tricks
There is also a fun blogging challenge going on through "Exploring the MTBoS." The first challenge is to blog either about "One Good Thing" or "A Day in the Life" and post by Saturday, January 16th. You can read mine here!
Seeing amazing work being done everyday by passionate math educators inspires me to push myself and always look to improve. I've learned so many more ways to enhance a lesson, get kids thinking, analyze student work, improve my own content knowledge, improve my pedagogy, increase my knowledge of math as social justice, and so much more. I just can't imagine being in the place I am as a teacher if I hadn't found this group.
I hope you enjoyed reading about what inspires me! Next up, on Tuesday, January 19th, is Colleen Noffsinger on her blog Literacy Loving Gals. Colleen is a reading specialist with 19 years of experience in education. Even though our content area of specialty is quite different, she is one of those teachers that I look to for inspiration because of her passion and dedication to students and teachers. We follow each other on Twitter and have communicated a little through email but I had never actually chatted with her in person until a month ago! She greeted me with a big hug which just goes to show you the power of connecting with people through social media!