cheesemonkey wonders

cheesemonkey wonders

Sunday, March 25, 2012

On Meeting Sam, or How Twitter and Blogging Refreshes My Teaching Practice... and My Life

So Sam Shah was in town for a visit, and a bunch of us got together Friday night for drinks and dinner in his honor.

Before anything, I should tell you that everything magical you've heard about Sam is true, including that elusive quality that Jason of Always Formative captured so well when he said that "hugging him is like being wrapped up in a freshly laundered rainbow."

If you teach, then you also understand that there is something both improbable and heroic about going out on a Friday night. Especially for a late dinner.

But these are my math teacher-blogger tweeps, the people who restore my faith in the power of teaching and learning, and nothing recharges my teaching batteries like connecting with them IRL (In Real Life). So I'm glad I got my butt off the couch and met up with them at Bar Tartine for an evening of conversation, laughter, and understanding.

There's something precious about having a circle of teacher-blogger tweeps that is hard to explain to teachers who don't use Twitter or blogs. Don't get me wrong, my colleagues at school are amazing and I love teaching with them. But my math teacher-blogger tweeps are the ones who really "get" me. They inspire me. They know me at a surprisingly deep level. They are the colleagues who are trying to improve as teachers in the same ways I am trying to improve as a teacher. They are the ones who respond to my Twitter distress calls with lesson ideas and foldables and encouragement and energy of their own. They share my love of office supplies and unicorns and my outrage at stupid copier breakdowns the suggestion that Khan Academy videos are the solution to all of American education's problems.

Sam, of course, is the grand wizard of intellectual generosity in the Twittersphere, the keeper of the Virtual Filing Cabinet and well as the frequently hilarious "Favorite Tweets," which is why I follow him around like a duckling.

And that is why it was such a gift for all of us to get to meet him IRL.


  1. I 100% agree. Though I haven't met Sam yet (I hope to sometime soon), I can say I had exactly the same feeling when I met Frank Noschese for the first time. It really is amazing how well you can get to know someone 140 characters at a time.

  2. You crazy, girlfriend! (As I melt a little!) Now stay in bed, call in sick tomorrow, and really work on getting healthy.