Teachers as Writers: Blogging Basics

The education field is bursting with professionals who are intelligent, innovative, and supportive of one another. I witness these characteristics daily walking down the halls of our middle school, chatting in PLCs, and scrolling through my social media feeds. The people that surround me in-person and virtually push me to be a better teacher for my students, and I am grateful that these connections help me to work toward creating a more inclusive and supportive classroom every day. By freely sharing our practices and ideas with one another, students everywhere benefit from these collaborations. Blogs are just one tool that can help us in this pursuit.

50 years ago, the idea of teachers as writers was not as prevalent as it is today. During the 1970s and 1980s, it started to become popular for teachers to “walk the talk” with the emergence of writer’s workshops and writing alongside our students. In the 1990s and early 2000s, teacher researchers began to share their ideas in a more academic setting than was previously seen. At this point in time, educator activism is becoming an important way for people to speak up and write about injustices that are unfortunately seen in education and ways to resist them. (Whitney, et al., 2014) As educators, blogs are a platform that give us the opportunity for our voice to reach a larger audience when we have something important to say (which all of us do!) The Association of Illinois Middle School’s website and social media work to give educators across the state an opportunity to share what’s on their mind with people across Illinois and beyond through our bi-monthly blog.

As an advocate for sharing our ideas through blogging, it’s important to know there are some real benefits to blogging. The research indicates that when we blog as educators, it gives us an opportunity to:

  • Reflect and think critically about our teaching practices
  • Establish our professional identity and find others who think like us or push us to examine new ideas
  • Create a network of support to diminish feelings of isolation
    (Rodesiler, 2017)

If you’ve made it to this point, and you’re convinced that it’s time to start blogging, let’s start brainstorming.

What can you blog about?

Take a minute to think about all you do in your classroom or office to support students or teachers each day. These could include:

  • Unique Perspectives
  • New Ideas
  • Stories about Teaching
  • Research-Based Strategies
  • Anything else!

STOP! 2-Minute Brainstorm

Seriously, stop right now and jot down as many ideas as you can for potential blog posts.

  • Your different roles in education
  • How you’ve changed as an educator over the years
  • Reviewing a PD book
  • Conversations you’ve had
  • Meaningful professional development you’ve attended

I’ve got my topic, now what?

Here’s where we get to the fun stuff. Some things to consider as you start organizing your ideas and drafting:

  1. Use a conversational tone
  2. Short, but specific, titles work best
  3. Make it easy to read! Think headings, short paragraphs, and bulleted items
  4. Consider your audience
  5. Use links when appropriate
  6. Don’t forget the pictures
  7. Data and references can be powerful

Time to share your awesome!

Your voice is important, and AIMS is here to give you a platform with a larger audience to share them with. If you’re interested in blogging with AIMS, reach out to Jessica Weibler (11511@kaneland.org) to get started. We welcome anyone involved in education to share their perspectives and are excited to work with you!

To view the presentation from AIMS Summer Splash 2021 that inspired this blog post, click here.


Rodesiler, Luke. “Sustained Blogging about Teaching: Instructional Methods That Support Online
Participation as Professional Development.” TechTrends: Linking Research and Practice to Improve Learning, vol. 61, no. 4, July 2017, pp. 349–354. EBSCOhost.

Whitney, Anne Elrod, et al. “Teacher-Writers: Then, Now, and Next.” Research in the Teaching of
English, vol. 49, no. 2, 2014, pp. 177–184. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/24398674.

Jessica Weibler has been a middle school ELA teacher for 8 years in the Chicago suburbs. She is passionate about literacy and currently holds a degree in middle level education along with a reading specialist degree. Jessica advocates for middle school students as a board member for the Association of Illinois Middle Schools and through adjunct work at a local university.