I was scared of letting you read this.
I was my own worst judge.
I am not alone.
There are too many others who are scared of letting others hear their voice.
I have come across others...
Sometimes that makes me angry.
There are days like that.
What the hell is a blog?
I was never quite sure.
It seemed important for me to try to answer the question.
As far as I remember, I started off by reading Stephen Downes' blog.
I suppose it was as good a place as any.
I didn't think that I would ever write a blog.
What the hell was a blog anyway?
So here I am writing this blog.
I can't answer for anybody else but this is my answer to what a blog is. It's this. It's writing when I feel the desire, the need to fling a few words down onto this white space, this comfortable white space.
What the hell was Twitter?
I didn't know.
I spent six months being an egg.
I felt ovally dumb.
I didn't know what Twitter was.
I was an egg.
I took a long time to hatch thus...
I needed an incubator.
The incubator for Touches of Sense...was Learning with E's.
It is a story I tell my students now.
I had read Steve Wheeler's blog for a a fair old time before I thought I might be able to comment.
Like many people I feared that I had nothing to offer to a wider public.
I wasn't quite sure if comments like I might write would be appropriate.
I wrote to Steve asking if it was OK to comment on his blog.
Looking back on it, this seems ridiculous.
It wasn't ridiculous then.
I would read his blog every day.
It made sense to me.
I connected with his willingness to write himself openly.
There was a humanity, a personality expressed which I appreciated.
I was thinking about it the other day (a couple of years back now).
Comments that I wrote on his blog became progressively more like blog posts.
A couple of years ago, I went and found a few comments and saved them in a Google Document.
Yes, looking back the voice is recognisably mine, or at least the voice that I have become familiar with.
A Twitter Chat
I was participating in a Twitter chat yesterday.
I am no longer an egg.
I am a swirl.
It was an #edenchat hosted by Steve Wheeler about "rhizomatic learning".
He announced the theme in his blog: #EDENCHAT Growing Minds.
I got wind of it via my PLN on Facebook.
Autumm Caines did a great job Storifying it here:
@ashleygshaw @NomadWarMachine @amyburvall @shaw2703 My attempt to #Storify "#EDENChat on Rhizomatic Learning" https://t.co/WUKpS0SqLZ— Autumm Caines (@Autumm) February 25, 2016
I wouldn't have been able to develop the Twitter skills necessary to participate in the chat had I not attended the Learning Without Frontiers Conference in London in 2011.
The photo above that I dug out was from a presentation which Steve Wheeler gave about Edupunk.
Steve Wheeler asked a question:
Q4: I'm now quoting @davecormier: How can we help students 'make connections we would never make ourselves'? #EDENchat— Steve Wheeler (@timbuckteeth) February 24, 2016
@amyburvall @timbuckteeth @davecormier "Dots...that is where we come in." Dots is people. #edenchat #rhizo16 pic.twitter.com/qWdaPh3Nb9— Simon Ensor (@sensor63) February 24, 2016
I suppose this is where I connect those dots...
Touches of sense is a space where I connect my learning openly, rhizomatically.
I don't start with a plan and then work backwards.
I don't have a structure in my head before I start writing.
In writing, I am learning.
In writing, I am learning what I will think, not what I think now.
In writing, I am learning to listen to a voice which was silenced for so long...by others, by myself.
Searching for patterns.
@amyburvall @timbuckteeth @suebecks humans are pattern seekers even where there were none #edenchat pic.twitter.com/2a45XV8XCq— Simon Ensor (@sensor63) February 24, 2016
I looked for patterns in my titles here in my last post.
I come back and read and read anew.
This is a blog for me. It is a space to pattern search.
This is a mapping of haphazard rhizomatic learning.
I look at the people that I have had the pleasure to learn from and with.
How can you not learn from people who wear shoes like Howard Rheingold's, or paint in pink like Amy Burvall?
Search for Steve Wheeler in this blog's search box, you will see how often his ideas connect here.@amyburvall @hrheingold Howard has opened my mind to interconnected learning opportunities and taught me so much #edenchat— Sue Beckingham (@suebecks) February 24, 2016
Search for Dave Cormier in this blog's search box, you will see how often his story of rhizomes connects here.
@ManYanaEd @Autumm To me it's a story for learning. It's a story that works for some people, not for others. #EDENchat— dave cormier (@davecormier) February 24, 2016
We are all so densely complex to unravel.
How I feel of what I know changes constantly.
There is no knowledge without emotion.
There is no network without nuture.
Nature, nurture, network
Learning with e's.
I posted a link to an old post about anger to #edenchat.
I noticed a kind comment of Steve Wheeler's
Thank you Steve for your voice.
It touched me.
Here are some Touches of Sense:
Learning without emotion is nothing.
Our role is to enable each learner to listen to the sense their patterns make.
Here are some of my patterns.
This is my story.
This is my voice.
Thank for your part in its incubation.