You never know where reflection might take you #BYOD4L

Have just read a blog by David Hopkins for BYOD4L called communicating , network and noise as part of a free online professional development event called #BYOD4L (Bring Your Own Learning Device 4 Learning).

This post contains some content that I posted as a comment response to David’s blog. As the comment became a reflection, then an action point (all the time with nurses is rubbing off on me) and finally a blog I decided to post it here. As I posted it some new thoughts occurred to me as I looked at the title of the blog and realised what I thought was a blog about experiences of a tweetchat was actually a lot more. Somehow, by skipping to the bit that I felt was more relevant to me I had bypassed the essence of the post that was so neatly encapsulated in the title. In attempt to redress this including those ideas as headings.

Today’s theme is communicate and yesterday’s was connect. The themes of BYOD4L are interlinked and have been titled the 5C’s
As a person immersed in the world of healthcare this made me chuckle as the 6C’s play such a large part in framing the work healthcare practitioners do. Also, last week I had sent someone my version of the 6C’s before they went for a job interview:

Diverse Learners 6C's

Diverse Learners 6C’s

In a previous life I was a Communication Support Worker translating two languages  – British Sign Language and english –  between teacher and student in various education settings. My job involves finding solutions to problems, supporting students who have dyslexia, dyspraxia or mental health issues and often a combination of these issues that can make communicating ideas and feeling challenging. I have the skills to be a good communicator? Is that the question posed though?



I enjoy networking, sharing ideas, problem -solving and collaborating with others on all sorts of projects and exchanging information and signposting to resources whether they be online, in a book or in a person.  I tweet,  facebook, vlog and use LinkedIn  communicating in different ways to raise awareness on a number of issues. I take part in tweetchats signposting others to resources and offering help where I can and offering suggestions for engagement typified by this blog about getting nurses tweeting. My Personal Learning Network (PLN) grows every week and I know I can call upon others for help but do I utilise this?



Anyone who has ever met me will know I am noisy and if you do not hear my voice you will hear me thumping about, bumping into something, clattering around or knocking something over (my husband calls it bewildering) often referred to by others as a trait of dyspraixa. I spend all day talking: to students and myself in an internal dialogue that is exhausting as I try to navigate the world. I try to make noise in the online world by, vlogging, posting on social media, campaigning  signing petitions and generally being enthusiastic about things and encouraging to others in anything they are doing.  I also have trouble monitoring the sound levels of my own voice (often associated with dyspraxia) therefore  being noisy is just part of being me. As part of my dyspraxic profile I have sensory processing disorder that makes me very intolerant of noise – OH the irony!



The thought of moderating a tweetchat fills me with excitement but accompanied by a huge helping of dread and before reading David’s post I had put the idea at the bottom of the to-do list.
I have toyed with the idea of offering to host a tweetchat for @WeNurses on supporting healthcare students who have dyslexia, dyspraxia. Even hinted at it but not yet made the plunge of explicitly communicating my intentions to them. For a lot of my every day life I feel overwhelmed just by performing every day tasks you don’t even think of – walking downstairs, whilst carrying a bag and having a conversation is such a challenge that I heave a huge sigh and have a great sense of relief when I get to the bottom without any mishap. The huge sigh is probably because I have been holding my breath in concentration as in truth the walking downstairs without falling or feeling sick is challenge enough.  I spend my life trying to combat the overwhelmed feeling I get  from the noise, light, temperature of my environment and when too many things happening at once I could quite easily cry,or react in frustration as a toddler might do to not being able to complete a task.  To hear and see more about my experiences click here or read one of my blogs such as this one about shoes
David’s  experience moderating a Tweetchat offered me reassurance that I will feel overwhelmed by the speed and volume of tweets but this is part of it and not to worry. This is of great comfort as I know everyone will feels the same and I can prepare for it probably by using some of the strategies David suggests in his blog and that are listed further down.


What I have concluded from my reflection:
1.  I need to take time to digest what is offered – it is about taking as well as giving –

2. I need to act on trying to “listen” more and action point it  rather than keep on highlighting it as an area for me to improve

3. That blogging takes too much time and energy for me and I need find an easier outlet like vlogging or audio


What I have taken from David’s  blog

1. I like the idea of having an alternative account to tweet from – as I can then chip in to offer ideas and solutions.

2.I also like Chrissie’s idea of giving yourself permission NOT to try to keep up with all the tweets – identifying themes or posting questions.

3.I have posted questions in a tweetchat before to facilitate discussion, challenge others perceptions so I may already possess some of the skills – always good to have a confidence boost.

4. Reflecting on my reflection (spent 30 mins chatting to my daughter about fears) I now think I have a strategy as to how I might break down the barrier of my own fear and do a facilitate / moderate / manage tweetchat.

5. In the spirit of communicating and connecting and trying to get something concrete from #BYOD4L I am also going to be bold – because then I have to do it. I will ask someone  I first met at a #BYODL event to do it with me. I have wanted to connect and work with them in a more concrete way for some time and I believe this is the opportunity.



You never know where reflection might take you.




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