blogging about blogging

KSTF Blogging Workshop Phase3


Working in small groups or alone, together we will do and publish three or four things for our classroom blogging community:
1. Publish the basics of “How-To” (tutorials)
2. Publish an introductory blog post for students
3. Publish a series of 10 or so guiding questions or reminders for teachers
4. Publish a critical commentary on classroom blogging
5. Publish something else that will both help you and help the group

Some more details or ideas for each:

1. How-To Tutorial’s: Integrate existing guides (YouTube has many – check them out!) with your own commentary about why you might want to do certain things as well as “be careful you don’t make the same mistake I did.” Possible how-to tutorials could include:
* embedding video in a blog post
* linking your flickr account to your blog
* setting up a multi-user class blog
* setting up a classroom blog for YOUR class (figuring out firewall issues, email address issues, permission issues)
* how to write a “permission to blog letter” for your class – here is an example

2. Draft an introductory post for your students (and their parents and the public) that describes your goals for blogging as well as the norms for participation you are hoping for. This introduction could take a number of forms:
* Specific to a given unit in which you expect to involve an expert (not local) scientist/mathetmatician
* Daily scribe posts in which each student takes a turn each day
* Additional special assignments such as one in which students are invited to post a controversial topic or situation that is related to the curriculum and invite peers to engage in a conversation – Using evidence to support claims is emphasized.
Many are somewhat general like this one – try to write one that communicates more about your expectations regarding how, when and why students will engage in blogging.

3. Draft a series of 10 guidelines or reminders for teachers to consider when developing their philosophy and practices with respect to classroom blogging. Remember these guidelines should help teachers make the shift to Mindset 2 (different values than represented in traditional, teacher-centered, transmission model teaching). Some examples include: “Whose voice is prioritized in this use of classroom blogging – the teacher’s or the students’?” “Do students have enough autonomy to introduce and suggest new and valuable forms of participation through the blog?” “Is the work students are doing through the blog aligned with my disciplinary objectives for this particular class?” “Are students being taught online SAFETY and ettiquette practices that are needed for this new form of classroom participation?” Such lists like this exist online… here are a couple:
10 questions every blogger should ask before posting
8 ways blogging makes me a better teacher

4. Critical commentary on classroom blogging – Ideas? Let’s see what I can come up with…
* Why are social networking technologies necessary to address issues of social justice in the classroom?
* How might the use of social networking tools like blogging energize institutional changes in schooling? What are possible visions of what these shifts might look like in the future?
* Schools’ responsibilities to effectively nurture students’ safe, appropriate and powerful online communication practices
* NEED!!!!!! for teachers to have a new mindset – Check this blog post out for inspiration
Others? Come up with your own. One resource that could be used to inspire more ideas might be Mr.K’s on blog he has been keeping about blogging.

Post the results of your work to this blog. Read each others’ and comment. Feel free to add more after you leave the session today!

Enjoy the work!


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