blogging about blogging



First steps

or how to actually do this in a classroom.

Ok, lets step back from the theoretical for a minute. There are some basic logistics that should be thought about. For instance: will your district allow you to blog? If the answer is no…well you haven’t talked to them long enough then. Seriously, if you are reading this post, you problem understand the possibilities that blogging in a classroom offers. Most likely, there are very few people who would say: “I do not want my students involved involved with an activity that pushes them to be reflective learners, collaboratively interacting with a potentially global audience around the very ideas that they are addressing in their classrooms.” What they will say is: But what about the bad people on the web.

Yes, there are many bad people on the web. So I too suggest we think about this issue.

First, you need to be able to assure the people in your district that you are aware of this issue. You may want to find a blogging place where you can have some ability to review postings before they go live. This will allow you to assure district personnel that you  are watching for appropriateness. However, you will want to set in there a period in which students can prove responsibility and thus be freed from this hurdle to their posts. Also, you don’t want to have to review every single post.

Secondly, you will need to do some research around the Acceptable Use Policy.  This is what students (and usually parents) sign to say it is OK to use the internet. Have your blogging project fall under this same use policy with the same expectations and consequences. Check it out though, some policies were actually written to restrict blogging and other postings.

Thirdly, you will need to address the issue of filtering. Districts must filter internet access for students. Usually they have some company do this filtering.  When filtering you either open up an entire site or close it down. So for blogspot.com (for instance) you either let students get to every blog there or none at all.  So you may want to research some education only blog hosting. This way your district can be comfortable opening up the entire site. The other option is to install your own blog software on a server you maintain. As most of us don’t have that option, I suggest a place such as edublogs.org

Ok…so there are my 2 cents on this topic. There are more issues involved…but will save those for some of our experiences down the road.

Happy blogging!!

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