Friday, February 20, 2015

Socratic Seminar: Branching Out

For those of you who are unaware, Socratic Seminars are defined as "collaborative, intellectual dialogue facilitated with open-ended questions about a text." I use these in my classroom to get my students engaged in the text we are reading/discussing. It works much better than just having them stare at me for 45 minutes.

Tuesday night I participated in Cassie (Casserole)'s  first #casserolechat. First off, I absolutely loved this chat. I don't participate in many Twitter chats like this. Whether it's because I miss them or I'm lazy, I don't know. But on Tuesday, I was feeling particularly chatty and just happened to be on Twitter at the right time.

I have to say that I absolutely loved this chat. It was great holding a conversation about similar interests in this way and not just reading a post and commenting on it - kind of like this lol! I feel like my lack of social media presence has to do with being overwhelmed (which I'll get in to below). And this chat - thank you, Cassie! - seems to have opened my eyes as to what my problem recently has been. After my wedding and honeymoon, especially my honeymoon since it was a full week off, I've had a lot of trouble coming back into blogging. Even my reading has suffered a bit.

It's not because I'm over blogging - and I'm definitely not over reading - but something about that week away affected me more than I would have anticipated. Normally I review books right away, but now they sit as drafts for a week or two. I eventually come back to write the review and my notes make zero sense. Nada, zip. So no review for that book. Then I get bummed out because I loved it and I want to share it with all of you, but outside of "Yea this book! Read it, read it now!" I don't know what I can say because it's been too long since I read it and I'm not sure how to articulate my thoughts.

This brings me to (possibly) the reason I'm overwhelmed. I have been neglecting my other interests outside of books and I think that's why I'm feeling burned out, especially in the book world. For the past two years I've been solely book-books-books. But what about my other interests?

During #casserolechat Cassie brought up a question about which blogs inspire us. Katie (Bookish Illuminations) pointed out that she looks to travel and writing blogs for inspiration and Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner) chimed in saying that nowadays she reads more non-book blogs than book blogs, which got me thinking.

Am I reading too many book blogs?

I've recently found myself barely skimming my Bloglovin' feed and pretty much just clicking on "mark all as read" without really reading any posts. Even some of my favorite blogs, I just feel eh about. When I expressed my (new) desire to start reading other non-book blogs, Katie made the excellent point that doing so can inspire me in regards to Bookish.

Jamie then got all philosophical: "As a person, that's not who I am either. SO many varying interests! For a while I neglected other blogs and I just felt overwhelmed by all the book stuff 24/7." Cassie added that "No one likes only one thing." (An obvious observation, but also one that seemingly needed to be pointed out to me.)

And these ladies are right.

So I made a list of my other interests that I would love to explore more often:
  • Marriage/Kids/Family Stuff
  • Bentley (my German Shepherd) - and no I'm not ignoring him, but I love spoiling him with new toys and just reading about all the things I can do for my furbaby
  • Decorating/Organizing my house
  • Organization in general
  • Working Out
  • Cooking
  • Entertainment (movies, television)
  • Disney
  • Education/Teaching (specifically high school English)
  • Fashion and Beauty, relatively new interests but still
So while I have my fill of book blogs, I want to read other blogs, too. I want to branch out and learn more about my interests. So I tip my hat to you three ladies for helping me open my eyes as to my recent blah-ness when it comes to blogs.

Now the fun begins.

Recommend me your favorite (non-book) blogs! They can be inline with my interests or they can just be ones you absolutely adore. 
Help me branch out   :)

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