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What's the point of this blog?

notepad.JPGI started this blog for the following purposes:

"I hope the blog will be a resource for people who are interested in or have taken the workshop, or for those who have taken the train-the-trainer course. I plan to share tips and ideas, and I hope others will do the same. Look for notices of upcoming workshops, new publications, and curriculum updates. Let's share our ideas for building Extension's public value in Minnesota and across the country!"

After three years, I thought it might be helpful--to me, at least :) --to review how well the blog has served those purposes and a few others I've come up with along the way.

Source for my tips and ideas for BEPV trainees: I think the blog does this pretty well. While it isn't the easiest source to navigate, if you read through the entries in the "Workshops" category, you will find a lot of ideas about how to teach public value workshops, pitfalls I've run into, new ideas I've come up with and heard from others.

Source for others' tips and ideas: Uh, not so much. While I know the blog gets hits, I don't get comments or guest blog post submissions. When I hear an idea from someone else, I share it here, but I think reading the ideas in the author's own words would be more compelling. Generally, the blog has not been the community forum I hoped it would be. I am not sure what I can do to remedy that, but I am open to ideas.

Source for notices and events: I am pretty careful to post events, publications, and resources here. Consequently, the blog serves as a record of public value events--at least the ones I know about. However, unless you subscribe to the blog's feed reader, you might not see these announcements in a timely manner. While I usually give out the blog URL at events and workshops, I may start showing people how to subscribe to the feed reader, too.

Clearinghouse for public value messages: I often hear this request. Many public value teams recognize that they should not be reinventing messages for programs that are similar to those done in other states. Teams should share their approaches and messages across states, thus improving the strength of our messaging across the country. Many teams would like there to be a central place for sharing and exchanging public value messages. The blog can begin to serve this purpose, but only to the extent that public value teams share their messages with me and allow me to publish them. I have collected some such messages, and will include them in an upcoming blog entry. Other ideas for a clearinghouse are very welcome.

A reflective journal of my own Extension teaching: For me, this has been the most valuable purpose for the blog. It gives me an opportunity and a prompt to reflect on each workshop I teach and jot down the unexpected questions, the intriguing comments, and the teaching techniques that did or did not work. I hope my teaching is improving along the way.

Do you publish a blog? Is it serving its intended purpose...or some unexpected purpose?