What was the catalyst for setting up your blog?
- I’d seen class blogs from around the world,
- An exciting opportunity to really engage my class with their learning,
- To help them think more about their learning,
- To connect their learning to the real world,
- To make connections with other students from around Australia.
What was the impact of the blog on your teaching and learning?
- Rearrange time in my room – not having everyone doing the same thing at the same time
- Greater focus in activities on how we could “show” what we are learning. Focus was more visible, overt, up front. Students knew explicitly the focus of the activities
- Rearrange computer use and access – use individual computers and computer lab. Greater need for individual computers – skills needed to be adequate
- Purposeful group work that doesn’t fit into traditional KLAs but works across KLAs. Authentic tasks rather than busy work/stencils
- Encourages personalisation of learning – students at own level. Sharing, articulating, questioning of and by students about learning
- Learning is not content driven – its about understandings and sharing/exploring these understandings
- We all learn together – everyone has strengths and has something to offer
- Student voice – students are heard and are important part of the what & how of what we do in our room
- Voice - personal styles, personal expertise and preferred learning styles
How did the blog assist you to address the elements of the Quality Teaching Framework?
- Learning is authentic and shared with a wide audience
- Understandings/knowledge/learning/concepts are articulated, shared, revised, questioned and re-formed in light of responses from the audience
- Intellectual Quality, Quality Learning Environment and Significance are all supported naturally by blogging within our classroom
Introduce your blog:
What blog tool are you using?
Purpose of your blog?
Inform, share, reflect, celebrate, document
Learning, understandings, experiments, new thoughts, ideas, suggestions, successes, failures,
Audience for your blog (intended & actual)
Intended - Class, school, family, other school students
Actual - Class, school, family, other school students, friends, visitors, education commentators, groups, other teachers, students from other countries, classes from other countries, university students, university lecturers, ICT specialists
Highlight the part of the blog your students engage with the most
Links – delicious account for current topics; links to revision sites
Highlight any content of your blog you would improve and give reasons for the change
Posts are changing over time – from “show and tell” posts to more reflective posts. From retellings/recounts of events to learning in action (posting info and asking for comments and suggestions) to using web2.0 tools to explore their learnings and understandings.
Comments are developing too – from simple comments to more thoughtful responses to the content/ideas in a particular post.
Graphics – from uploading photos to using graphics in more exciting ways.
What do you believe are the benefits of using a blog with your students?
What lessons have you learnt on your “blogging journey” which you would wish to share with others?
You are not alone
Take a chance
Risks are OK
You can do it
FEATURES & FUNCTIONS OF BLOGS
- Outline technical features that were important in setting up the blog
- Outline administrative features that were important in setting up the blog
- How is your blog used and managed – who publishes, how often, moderation, length of time your blog will exist
We all publish – through my login of class blog, post singularly, in pairs, whole class
Class members have own blogs – publishing rates vary between students
Publishing rates vary – according to what we get up to and other pressures
Moderation – by me through gmail accounts
Length of time? 5/6PAllStars blog = 1 year; 07/08 AllStars = 2 years and going strong
- Demonstrate a typical sequence of steps you would follow when setting up the blog and posting (from logging on to logging out)
Steps can be found on Edublogs forum
- Demonstrate a typical sequence of steps your students would follow when interacting with the blog and posting (from logging on to logging out)
Students compose their posts in a Word document (this is saved in their Eduweb folder)
Check 3 before me – quality work and editing; quality posts or comments
Students login to their blog (or I log into class blog) and upload text.
Add photos from Student Share folder
Check again, then publish
- What features/functionality of the current blog tool are essential for effective use of the blog?
WYSIWYG interface for ease of understanding when posting
Ease of embedding media, widgets, and web2.0 applications (Teachertube, video, FLASH animations etc)
Edublogs Forums + Edublogs blog for help of general and specific nature
- What features/functionality would you like but don’t currently have?
Moderating Posts feature so when students are ready to publish I can check before they are actually visually published
- What features/functionality limits your effective use of the tool