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Pat raised an interesting point in his comment responding to my last post. What else is there online that can help us share resources and work smarter, not harder?

I think the connection between schools in creating this big, happy, online KIPP family is SO much larger than just blogs and aggregators. I think a KIPP wiki would be another incredible start, and as soon as someone can figure out a great way to organize a wiki like that so that information is easy to find and access, it could change the way we work. (Don’t worry, I’ve already started thinking about it…)
However I see wikis and blogs (and the many other parts of Web 2.0 I think we could, and should, be using) as serving entirely different purposes. A KIPP wiki would be a great place to go to make planning (and even execution) more efficient and effective, whereas blogs and aggregators makes dialogue and conversation ABOUT these more meaningful.

I think back on all the Friday evenings spent at La Tolteca (the best Mexican restaurant in RoRap) discussing teaching and even bigger picture education theory over delicious Mexican food. Friday evenings are the best for that because the pressure of the week is off our shoulders, and we have not yet started worrying about the upcoming week. We are then afforded the rare opportunity of having those discussions that don’t necessarily directly impact your classroom the following Monday. But again, it stays within our staff. A lot of the ideas people raise, and the discussions that result, are brilliant, and would push us even more if they included outside perspectives. For now I see blogs as one of the best ways to do that, since there’s no time limit, no location requirement, and no invites… anyone can participate, anytime!

Only downside is the lack of chips and white dip…

For more specifics about how to be part of that discussion, see yesterday’s post, “Give me five minutes and I might change your life”.



  1. Thought I would share two quotes with you as you continue the discussion of blogs, technology and changing the world, which is something you are all capable of (English teachers – no criticism of the sentence structure please!).
    The first comes from a daily quote I received this morning and relates to what you are doing. “A new idea is first condemned as ridiculous and then dismissed as trivial until finally it becomes what everybody knows”…William James. How many of you ever heard of a blog 2 years ago?
    The second is on the back of my KIPP Batman shirt and happens to be one I like a lot…”If you are afraid to be differant than the world, how can you expect to make a differance in the world?
    Keep the ideas coming. The places where you will work after college need fresh thinkers and new ideas, so don’t be shy

  2. Without doubt KIPP needs to make a move towards online platforms that will connect all the great people from around the network to share information and collaborate. On a campus level, simple examples such as memos from the school leader are lost in emails and attachments – there is no channel to hold continued discussions as you would find on a discussion board or blog.

    One issue is that an public blog with a school leader’s thoughts on an individual incident with a student might not be a great idea. Schools and regions would need to develop private networks where a blog, or wiki, could become their base for all sharing and collaborations.

    Is the need for sharing inside a school/region as great as need of tapping into the resources of the rest of the web? What do you think could be the solution for this private/public problem?

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