Wow! I really enjoyed class on Tuesday night listening to Sue Waters discuss student blogging during my Social Media class. It is amazing to have a speaker present to us all the way from Australia. The power of technology! It was interesting to find out that Edublogs was one of the largest provider of educational blogs. I also really enjoyed listening to Sue’s personal journey about blogging and how her journey led her to working for Edublogs.
I think Sue brought up some really good points about how writing is just one component of blogging. There are so many other ways for students to reflect and share their thoughts and feelings other than writing it down in a blog post. It is important as an educator to allow your students to use a wide range of tools when blogging. Blogging can help build a community and allow for reflection. Reflection is a critical part of the learning process and I believe in our everyday lives. When we reflect on our experiences we can learn about our strengths and what we need to continue to work on to grow as a learner.
I think the discussion regarding if a blog should be public or private raised a lot of good points. I think by making your blog public it allows for a lot of learning and excitement to occur with your students. But, it can be tough making the decision. I am right now leaning to have my class blog public as I am never going to post my students names anywhere on my classroom blog. I am also not going to post student’s names or photographs on their personal pages attached to our class blog. In the school I teach at many of the classes each have a class name/theme. In my class we are the 2S Secret Agent classroom. So each student will use their secret agent number to post their work under. I want other people to be able to comment on my students work other than just myself, fellow staff members, and my student’s families. I think it will lead to a lot of great discussions and learning if I allow our blog to be public. As discussed in our class the power of audience is key as blogging is “about social learning!”
I agree that blogging should not just be an add-on project. Teachers should be integrating blogging into their different curriculums. When I begin to blog with my students I am going to take little steps so I do not become overwhelmed. As discussed in our social media class as the teacher, I am going to write a comment or question on our class blog then my students can create their responses to my post and write their comments. After my students begin to understand more about blogging and become more comfortable they can start to create their posts on their individual pages. I am also going to teach my students about the blogging cycle: revise, evaluate, review and reflect.
During the presentation Sue walked us through the Edublog blogging series. The link is: http://teacherchallenge.edublogs.org/blogging-with-students/ It is a fantastic resource and I have been using it already! I appreciate that you can ask questions right on the Edublog website page and your questions will be answered. Or you can even send Sue a tweet on twitter and ask her questions about blogging @suewaters. Wow! She is an amazing lady. I am looking forward to continue to work on my classroom blog as my digital project. I am very happy that I chose to use Edublog for my classroom blog. I like knowing that I have fellow classmates in my social media class that will give me advice about blogging through our different social network communities and that I am able to ask Sue questions through Twitter. Technology has opened up doors for me to meet other teachers who are passionate about teaching and has allowed me to collaborate with other amazing educators!