Jack of all trades and master of…..

Today I have worked on so many different things. It is a Sunday, but the weather has been foul – so it’s not been a problem to be not very far from my computer for the whole day.

I started the day checking on my blog and other feeds and whether any of the participants on the two online courses I am working on needed any help.

My daughter then appeared and I talked to her about her job prospects. After this, I returned to my computer and wrote a course review for a course that has just finished. I then read all the materials for a new course that I am about to develop and wrote a lengthy email about the planning of this work.

In the middle of all this my son and his friend arrived to move furniture. Today he has moved out  – I am already missing him! During all this I was thinking I must think about our research project on blogging and so I went to the wiki to catch up with recent activity and immediately felt completely overwhelmed.

I retreated into the online reflective learning course that I am working on and read through the course materials for next week, to check that I am ready for my facilitation role. By now it was time for lunch and to talk to my husband who I could see was wondering if I would ever come away from my computer. Was I going to go down to my daughter’s stables, he asked, and help her muck out. No way! It’s freezing out there today!

So by this time it’s afternoon and when I return to my laptop, I find that the offer of more work has come in – a really interesting project on setting up a community of practice in HE. So I spend some time responding to that suggestion.

Then I remember that I have to do an audio file for my reflective learning course and so I record this to my mp3 player – and all the time it’s niggling me that I haven’t written to either of my blogs for a while and also that I haven’t sorted out in my own my mind how to use theoretical frameworks in relation to research. Although I am a new researcher, it seems to me that a lot of research papers are not based on theoretical frameworks, so why has a recently submitted paper been returned asking for it to be rewritten in relation to a theoretical framework?

Now my son is back again raiding my cupboards of sheets and crockery before he leaves for good, and my husband is asking for a haircut!

I decide that I must blog  for my reflective learning students (a different blog to this one) and realise that I am blogging with an audience in mind, which leads me off once again on the track of pondering on the role of an audience in blogging. The funny thing is that whilst writing my post for that blog I realise yet again, that if you just start writing, even if you don’t know where you are going, it can lead to insights that you didn’t expect and I find myself thinking again about theoretical frameworks – so I complete my post to my reflective learning blog and rush back to my connectivism research wiki, before I forget what it was that I was thinking of.

And now I am here, thinking about the fact that although I have jumped from topic to topic today, I have been able to make links between them.  But is this an effective way to learn?

I remember one of my managers once telling me that I would be able to do anything I set my mind to. I was flattered of course, but I also know that  I’m a Jack of All Trades and Master of None. Whilst this keeps life very interesting, it can also be frustrating to never quite have mastered anything to my satisfaction.

2 thoughts on “Jack of all trades and master of…..

  1. Sui Fai John Mak March 9, 2009 / 12:58 pm

    Hi Jenny,
    After reading your interesting daily, I have gained a better understanding of your busyness (a read that I learnt from Successful Intelligence) and your frustration – Jacks of all trades….

    I think I have a lot of commons with you, though I am not even the Jacks of all trades as yet..

    I like to do haircuts for others, but don’t know whether you like to do it or not with your husband. And I stayed with the computers for hours… then… again.. reading and practising on connectivism.

    Just wonder how you could manage all these, must learn these from you!

    Are we promising to enjoy the research? And have fun? 🙂

    Would this be a funny balance of your academia?


  2. Sui Fai John Mak March 9, 2009 / 1:02 pm

    Wow! I even spelt it as daily. It should be diary! It’s the daily diary that I enjoy reading.

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