What do you want to know about blogging with students?

I’m facilitating a session of blogging with students for ECAWA 2016 State Conference with Brette Lockyer and Michael Graffin on Saturday June 25 and we would love your help!

Background

We will be inviting participants in our session to share what they would like to learn during the session so we can personalize it to their needs.

Before the conference I’m trying to crowd source what you would like to know about student blogging — if you were able to attend a session on student blogging — to help us prepare as many answers as we can!

I’ll be publishing follow-up posts after the conference to provide the information we shared in the session and to answer any questions readers left on this post.

How you can help

Please leave a comment below to answers any of the following questions!

If you are new to blogging with students, or never blogged with students, we would like to know the following:

  1. What you would like to know about blogging with students?
  2. What grade(s)/subjects do you teach?
  3. Your class blog URL (optional).

For those experienced with blogging with students we would like to know:

  1. What are your tips for blogging with students?
  2. Your class blog URL (optional).

Thanks for your help!

2 thoughts on “What do you want to know about blogging with students?

  1. Hi
    We have blogged now with 4/5/6th graders — for 3 years now.
    We use the KidBlog venue and are content.
    At the present time, our blog is password protected and only students, parents, teachers, admin can visit the blog.
    This changes when they move on to Jr High.
    I started blogging primarily to provide the students with opportunity to use & improve their typing skills.
    The first two years…I named the blogs after their grade level — but now have changed it to their graduating year…so their blogs will continue with them all through their elementary years and then transfer to the secondary campus.

    What works for us
    BEFORE we even start, we have a paper blog lesson — where we use post-its. I found the idea from Karen (http://www.notesfrommcteach.com/2010/09/learning-to-blog-using-paper.html)
    Once we begin to blog…..
    1. For the blog topic, I write a sample post….so the students get ideas. I leave the topic vague but structured. Meaning, the topic is open enough to never get cookie cutter responses.
    2. We talk A LOT about quality comments. Writing a comment as a comment you would like to receive has helped encourage the students to spend a bit more time with writing a quality comment.
    3. I write a comment to every single student on every single blog post. (This year, we had over 1,500 blog posts)
    4. Students are encouraged to blog at home and to blog off-topic. Because of this, I have gotten to know several students much better as they share what they are doing beyond campus.
    5. Some of our blog topics included writing an acrostic poem, who in history would you like to have dinner with and what 3 questions would you like to discuss, what suggestions do you have for our principal to improve our playground, advice to the students who will be your grade in the fall, write a post based on a silly picture, etc.

    To say that a large percentage of my students love to blog would be an understatement. Besides HOUR OF CODE, blogging is the most successful event in our lab. The fact that it is summer…and I still have students blogging, makes my day!

    Finally, my goal with the students (as their tech teacher) is NOT to critique their writing skills as much as encourage typing skills and creative writing. Because of this, I have invited the teacher’s to view and comment and review student’s blog posts. If they wish it to be an assignment, that is their option. If I do notice a pattern with incorrect writing or spelling, I will talk with the child to the side or remind the class as a whole if it is a class error. (ie: we had an entire class who continually spelled a lot as 1 word)

    What we could do better:
    1. We only have 40 minutes for technology lab and student’s think they have to finish the blog w/in that time frame. I need to work on them not feeling they have to “finish” before the bell.
    2. We need to draft some blog posts and then go back and review, rework, and rewrite. (every good writer does this)
    3. To find a way that blogging will overlap more into the classroom use.
    4. Though we will stay password protected, I wish to find other grade levels from different locations to perhaps team-blog with us.
    5. We have to do much better with citing our pictures. We are using http://www.photosforclass.com/ – but KidBlogs seems to crop the picture so you lose the citation. Plus, I need my students to add it to the bottom of their posts.
    6. Hashtags — I have to get better at remembering to use them.

    Jennifer W Reply

  2. If I were attending a session on student blogging, I would like to know more about how to individualise the blogging process? Too many seem much the same. Also, in a class (or classrooms) with blogs, what are some tips and tricks to both managing the various blogs, as well as supporting students with engaging with other blogs both in school or from outside. Although the class blog allows for some interaction in the dashboard, this is a little cumbersome in my opinion.

    Aaron Davis Reply

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