I, Joy Kirr, am a middle school teacher, author, and speaker. My 7th grade ELA (English Language Arts) classes are working to improve their lives through student-directed learning - without marks throughout the year. This is a log of my learning experiences... Want to have me speak with your staff or facilitate a workshop? Here is my PORTFOLIO.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

#ShiftThis... The Chat

The #ShiftThis chat is coming to a close a month from today. I need to explain my reasons WHY.
I. Love. The. People. The group of teachers that show up want to change things in education. They want to shift students' audiences (get the community involved!), assignments (towards more relevance!), attitudes (growth mindset, anyone?) and much, much more. You know who you are. I am so very grateful to all the passionate educators that have taken on moderating the chat on Tuesday nights. Take a look HERE at all of the fabulous moderators! We couldn't have had those wonderful chats without your valuable contributions.

So why is it ending? Technically, it doesn't have to end. Anyone can pick it up at any time and use the hashtag to share questions or ideas about shifting the classroom, school, district, or education in general. I am stepping down as facilitator, a year after I stepped down as the moderator. YOU can still be a moderator and I will support you by helping you publicize your topic and date and time!

I haven't answered the question, I know. There are myriad reasons why I feel the need to step down from the chat.
  • I do not like to "sell" the chat. I feel that my Twitter feed should be much more than that, and yet I feel that when a person looks at my feed, all they see is #ShiftThis. I want to be able to celebrate others' ideas more than my own.
  • I didn't write the book so we could have a chat dedicated to it. I am glad we had the two-year stretch so people now use the hashtag to share their shifts, and I hope to continue to see shifts educators and administrators are sharing.
  • I feel out of touch with teachers on Twitter lately - I've lost touch with some educators because I'm totally focused on the one hashtag and creating tweets for advertising it that I miss the time browsing my feed and checking on those people that were there from the beginning for me. I know our connections morph as we use Twitter more, yet I don't want to lose sight of those educators who mentored me and have always been there. I want to support THEM now.
  • I need to put my feelers out for other chats I could jump into and out of as they come by. I'd like to try some that I haven't been able to attend, since I often feel that one hour a week online in the evenings is enough for me. Tuesday at 7pm CST is a VERY popular time for Twitter chats. Sooo many good ones going on at that time. I'm excited to be able to join and learn from other chats and educators I feel I've been neglecting.
I have gained so very much from the inspiring educators who have joined the #ShiftThis chat the past two years. Thank you for all you contribute - to our chat and to many others! I love the fact that we are #BetterTogether, and I hope you continue to connect and contribute - #YouMatter!