The Follow-Up Question

With respect to my last post (the point of which being that the best way to be an interesting teacher is to be an interested person) if you do the whole RSS thing, how does your categorizing break down? i.e. which percent of your feeds pertain to education, technology, knitting, etc? How far do you stray out of the edubloc?

You show me yours I’ll show you mine. Out of 182 subscriptions:

  • education (61)
  • design (39)
  • photograpy (24)
  • film-tv (13)
  • music (5)

The rest is an assortment. What does it all mean for method teaching, if anything?

I'm Dan and this is my blog. I'm a former high school math teacher and current head of teaching at Desmos. He / him. More here.


  1. My RSS feed doesn’t really represent my diverse interests. When it comes to “being interested,” I tend to read books. For example, currently checked out from the library are books on atheism, the modern wedding, particle physics, aquaculture, and one on how height affects personality and self-esteem in young men.

  2. I’ll play:

    *cartoons (4)
    *education-issues (3)
    *entertainment (1)
    *libraries-and-librarians (13)
    *lifestyle (2)
    *literature-and-literary-discussions (4)
    *student-blogs (5)
    *teacher-blogs (27)
    *technology-in-education (36)

    I put each blog into only one category, even when they might have been cross-referenced.

    Like Tony, I do have some interests that I pursue via books rather than blogs – e.g. mysteries, particularly those with a historical or literary setting.

  3. Absolutely love what you said about being an interested person. I will repeat that. Lots. In fact, I’m going to repeat it now: the best way to be an interesting teacher is to be an interested person. Exactly.

    I’m kind of strange, and am having trouble finding too many teaching blogs I like. After a strong culling of the reader yesterday, holiday!, during which I had to say some tearful good byes, I have the following now:

    I have an AAA list (so it’ll be first in my reader) this is only for days when I don’t find time to read all 128 of my subscriptions.

    That list has 19 blogs on it, of which only a couple are education blogs.

    But these 19 are all double-tagged for most days, when I do read (or skim & scan, technically) all of them.

    The primary tag are:

    advertising: 2
    education: 2
    humor-personal: 6
    language: 4 (only!)
    political: 10
    pop-culture: 6
    religion: 6
    technology: 11
    news: 32
    (news includes sub categories of health, science, terrorism, technology, etc. ad infinitum)

    I, like Tony, also have books at my bedside, (too many) which include currently:

    Visual QuickStart Guide to WordPress2 (for all the good it’s done me)
    The Disinformation book of Lists by Russ Kick
    The Urban Dictionary, Print Edition
    The New Inspirational Study Bible NKJV
    No One Cares What You Had for Lunch by Margaret Mason
    Teaching with Love and Logic by Jim Fay and David Funk
    The Abolition of Man by C.S. Lewis
    The Culture of Fear by Barry Glassner
    And the August edition of “The Source” magazine

    I guess it’s no wonder that I take adderall.

  4. I also recently purged *a lot* from the RSS. I have:

    News (2)
    “Fun” (3)
    Tech (2)
    Education (8)

    The feeds that are left are those that compel me to come back again and again, because, as Christian (I think it was him) said, the writing not just communicates well, but also makes me want to see what that person writes next.

    Your blog made the cut :)

    I get most of my “interesting” stuff (that I share with and/or impress students with) from surfing around. Or reading books.

  5. Okay — there is something wrong with my numbers (sorry Mr. Math Teach!) There are way more than 2 education blogs on my reader. But you get the gist.

  6. Ah yes, books, kinda forgot about that fount of extra-curricular fun. I haven’t personally digested anything longer than a blog post in the last three years. I can only assume I haven’t missed anything.

    viz. Taylor’s and my conviction that the best way to be interesting is to be interested, gotta link up Russell Davies’ article again, How To Be Interesting.

  7. Well, my trick is that I keep a few different blogs. I have a personal one for the meaningless stuff, and a professional one for my, well, professional stuff. So, I tend to not stray too far off topic on

  8. I dont use rss fed but this is from my bookmarks…

    Education 6
    Science 2
    News 2
    Humor 1
    Friends 3
    Students 12
    X students 4

    I recived a link from one of my former students to his blogg and on his blogg was links to alot of my present students.

    Now this question. Is it wrong of me to read my students blogg without telling them?

    It is a great feedback on my social inpact, when there is room to push them harder and when I need to back off to not break them. What motivations that do work and what doesnt. If they knew i was reading this channel of information would partly be closed.


  9. OK, here goes:

    Education – 14
    Friends’ blogs – 6
    Humor & entertainment – 5
    News – 4

    Like Mindy above, right now I’m at a just-purged-the-RSS-reader phase of life, so my “mere” 29 subscriptions is fairly minimal.

    By the way, I don’t think we’ve mentioned podcast subscriptions (which also come via RSS)…? My iTunes has a whole other podcast list.

  10. I just find it all so telling.

    For whatever it’s worth to all y’all over the age over forty, my age-related terror is that I will become so accustomed to and entrenched in my interests that I’ll watch my currently-diverse RSS portfolio shrink and narrow until I just blabber about real estate and shrug off the rest.

    Hope I’m still interested in lots of stuff like all y’all geezers. I’m sure it’s paying your students dividends.

  11. Not that this is supposed to turn into an RSS swap meet, but if you haven’t checked out, I think that it might be right up your alley, Dan. At least, if you like mixing math, programming and humor. Scroll through the last dozen or so and see if you don’t like it.

    And not to speak for all of the geezers out there, but I have ZERO real estate blog subscriptions. And no plans to start anytime soon.

    But darned if that AARP blog doesn’t have some great bed & breakfast ideas………….. ;-)