Monday, 28 April 2014

Finding a voice

Our theme for week one of the Reflexion 'uncourse', #TDReflex14 is 'Finding a Voice'.  To be truly reflexive as an educator means going deeper in our thinking about our practice, and asking those 'why' questions that lead us to being more mindful and self-aware.  Our 'voices' when we do this may be vocal, in dialogue with others - or written, through journals and thinking that we might keep private or share publicly.

For me, it is all about writing.  As a little girl, I loved to write.

I can't remember what I was writing here, but it was most likely a very long Enid Blyton-inspired saga, sustained by the ever-present biscuit tin.

But although I still love writing, I don't write fiction any more. I'm overwhelmed by the brilliance of the authors who reside in piles of books around my bed or clog up my spare room. And it isn't just that sense of being an imposter either.  When it comes to a story, I've never been able to think of one. This put me off writing anything for years, until I thought I'd have a go at blogging as a way of writing reflective journals for my PGCE. Doing this helped me to realise that there is much more to writing than make-believe.  The kind of writing that I actually like to do blends the personal with the professional; ideas are often sparked by experiences at home with my daughters but linked to the thinking I do at work.

It's taken me 40 years to find a voice that is actually me, and I'm not sure I would have found it if it hadn't been for blogging.  There is something about writing in a public space that makes me more considered and precise, and I enjoy the process of creativity that starts with an idea and often takes weeks to reach the page. Sometimes the finished product goes out into the world, and sometimes it doesn't. But that's fine, too.

And I'm glad, most of all for that little girl who had such great aspirations and found such pleasure in writing down her thoughts and ideas. The old typewriter and 70's wallpaper may have long gone, but I'm still here, typing away - and the biscuit tin is still by my side :)