Saturday, September 12, 2009

Julie and Julia

You know blogging has become mainstream when...Hollywood makes a movie about it.

But Julie and Julia makes me think about those who have not yet embraced blogging. And about those who don't understand the way it empowers and gives voice to...well...just about anyone.

In the movie Julie's blog serves as a kind of therapy along with her cooking. But the important thing is that she finds a way to celebrate learning (via Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking) by sharing the learning process with an unknown audience. That audience grows from her husband and friends and mother to hosts of others who share her interest in food and who make an intellectual or emotional investment in her project.

And we empathize with Julie's evolution as a blogger -- her typing into the void, her excitement when she is discovered by her first readers, her quandary about what to publish and what not to publish about her personal life. We want her to succeed in blogging (teaching, reflecting, sharing) about cooking each of the several hundred recipes in Child's influential book. We celebrate how she is an interactive reader who digests the book (in more ways than one) and produces something all her own.

Blogs may very well be one of the key tools for teaching and learning we have at our disposal today. So why are we still assigning the five-paragraph theme?

-- Susan


  1. Hi Susan and Renee,

    I love the name of your blog and the tagline!!

    How did you come to do this together?

    Susan, I'm commenting on your post in NING--

    You're in my aggregator and I'm looking forward to reading more of your thoughts,

  2. Thanks, Lani! That's the kind of good pressure we need to keep this up. Renee and I were colleagues long ago, and we share ideas about learning, teaching, and technology all the the time. Our idea is that if teachers (or others) understand that the real point is not the tools but the learning, they will be more open to trying some of these new things. Everyone needs to close their eyes and step off the safe platform a bit. Someone will catch you and help you keep swinging along (something I think Renee and I do for each other). The result is exhilerating.

    (I say this, and I am afraid of heights.)

  3. Hi Lani! All credit goes to Susan for convincing me to join her in this adventure. Great post, Susan. I'd like to share it with my faculty when we launch our 21 Things for the 21st Century professional development opportunity in January (topic of my latest blog). You and Julie capture the scariness of "typing into the void" that many of us feel when venturing out on to the web the first time. Hearing from Lani and others like her help keep me grounded when I'm "out there."

  4. Oh my, I was accidentally signed into a google account as Harley and lost my comment--

    Let me try again--

    I totally agree, it's about learning.

    What a grand idea teaming up to catch and encourage each other!

    It is scary; I find I write through the fear because I find through writing and reflecting I find so much I didn't know--