Saturday, November 19, 2011

Listen to the tales and romanticize (Tool)

The title quote for this post is from Tool's 10,000 Days album and song (a great prog metal album by the way). I'm using it because the blog has passed 10,000 pageviews since I started in 2008 (see the counter down the right column). My brain makes these seemingly random connections all the time.

Thank you if you're a casual pageviewer or a regular reader.

10,000 sounds like a lot of views. Originally (when I started the blog in 2008) the audience I wrote for and my whanau emailing list was restricted to just the immediate family. The whanau has kept growing since then and I know there are people throughout the blogosphere I've never met who regularly tune in to see what Wozza is up to.

Reality check time.

10,000 hours is the magic number that Malcolm Gladwell highlights as the amount of hours needed to become an expert; the difference between success and non-success, genius and mediocrity.

According to Malcolm Gladwell's thesis: anyone from the Beatles (in Hamburg playing marathon sets) to Bill Gates and Steve Jobs (tinkering away on their computers) who has succeeded has done so on the back of at least 10,000 hours of practice. Plus, obviously, some intelligence and talent. 

How many hours have I put into my three blogs since 2008? Nowhere near 10,000 hours.

I've done 313 posts on Wozza's Place (the one with 10,000 pageviews), 148 posts on my music blog and 111 posts on Baggy Trewsers. I would conservatively say that on average I spend about 3 hours on each post before I publish. I also start quite a few posts and forget about them or ditch them.

If my maths is correct that makes a grand total of about 1,700 hours. A looong way to go. I'm still a blogging novice.

When I compare that to teaching it puts the 1,700 hours into glaring contrast.

I've been a teacher since 1983 (with one year off in my first year of being a Principal and the last two years of being an educational consultant). That makes 26 years of teacher contact with students. I've taught for about 4 hours a day on average (more when I was younger and less when I moved into management areas) for about 190 days a year.

That makes a grand total of about 20,000 hours. That's a lot. Way over the Gladwell 10,000 hour yardstick.

I mention this because I miss teaching English. I love being an advisor at Ali bin Abi Taleb School in Al Ain and that has reignited my teaching juices.

Maybe in the future I can get back into the classroom again. I do understand now why many former Principals end up full circle as classroom teachers.

Love and peace - Wozza

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