Unit 2 Topic A

Brainstorm a list of the ways you might use a blog in your classroom. (If you are not a teacher, apply this brainstorming to your own situation.)

40 comments:

Cori said...

A blog could be used a variety of ways. In the teaching field, it could be used to post assignments and class happenings for the parents and students to see. It could be used for a youth group by posting happenings and encouraging scriptures. It could also be used by a daycare to post reminders about field trips, new teachers information, tuition costs, meal menus, birthdays, etc. I am probably going to go into some type of human service work, so I was thinking that the supervisor could use a blog to update employees about new employees, meetings, important phone numbers, carry-ins, letting people know when people are going to be off work. I have just learned, after creating my blog, that you can use it for anything and in any profession.

Worth Weller said...

Yes - I've seen some great blogs used as calendars - and after the event you can post pictures of it!!

Susan said...

I could use a blog to keep teachers informed about what's new in technology. When I first started this job 17 years ago, I published a newsletter every now and then to talk about what's new and to give ideas for using various software programs. A blog would be a great replacement because I could talk about new things, but I would also be able to archive past topics so they would always be readily available in one place.

Worth Weller said...

yeah - I never thought of that; but it would be much easier than a newsletter, and much handier for the reader, particularly with the archiving feature. I wonder if there is a way for the blog owner to control the archive - it seems preset by month, but it would make more sens if you could do it by topc?

Laura S said...

I plan on homeschooling my children and am thinking that a blog might be a wonderful way to include family and friends about what the girls are learning and the things that they are doing. Pictures, links to activities, and accomplishments as just some of the things I could include. I really liked Cori's idea about using it for a day care, too. I'm on our day care board and I think it would be a fantastic way to more actively include the parents and it would save having to print and copy a newsletter each month. I'm seriously considering starting one for our day care as soon as their internet is up and running. I'm getting some great ideas through this class!

Diana said...

I run a coordinate teams that are involved in an international creative problem solving program called Destination Imagination. Teams of up to 7 kids work to solve creative challenges and compete at regional state and international levels. It involves a lot of parental communication and a blog would be a way to disperse information and get responses and questions to all the participants.

Worth Weller said...

family blogs are great, Laura, because you can send out the "permalink" of any new post you want someone to see - rather than assuming they will read the whole blog, you can e-mail the actual URL of the newest or most interesting post.

Worth Weller said...

I love that idea Diana - students could share web links to other interesting sites, plus record their own ideas.

Sue said...

I think that my Science Olympiad students could use a blog to post questions about specific events and gather responses from their peers. Also, using a blog as another way to promote writing in Science certainly is appealing. My Honors Science students could post questions about their daily presentations and classmates could comment (this might be used as a homework assignment).

Charlie Harper (not my real name) said...

For those of us that are frustrated writers, a blog is a tremendous tool to get your ideas across - rants, pet peeves, nuances and simple observations of human nature.

As far as job situations, I work in the technical field, and I've been tasked with several projects my superiors would like me to work on and deploy to streamline our operation. I could give a daily update of how the project is developing, or perhaps, so as not to seem repetitive, stretch it out every few days or so. Comments and feedbacks would be welcome so we can work out inherent bugs that's bound to present themselves.

Diana said...

Nice, short article on blogging in middle and high school.
http://techlearning.com/story/showArticle.php?articleID=196605279&page=1

Logan said...

Some ways that I may use a blog in my classroom are: Keeping parents/students in the loop with classroom activities. If I was teaching PE; you could show what activites/programs you are working on that week. For instance, if you are completing the Track & Field portion of PE, remind the students and parents to dress appropriately (bring sweatshirt if it's expected to be cold ect.) If I were teaching Health; you could do the obvious classroom updates; as well as have students post comments on lessons relating to peer pressure & bullying.

Bob said...

My first exposure to blogs came by the way of RSS (Real Simple Syndication) feeds. While researching new computer technology, I came across an article on CNET about news readers. I found the article fascinating, news readers provide a way for you to quickly search, and if you wish, subscribe to a particular RSS feed. This is great for plowing through very large amounts of data without spending so much time surfing, because it’s targeted to your interests. I thought to myself that this is way cool but what practical purpose would this serve the company I work for? After looking at a few more articles I found the answer I was looking for, marketing. Companies are using blogs to promote products, and services through educational articles. The corporations that understand the power of this are seeing not only increased traffic on their web sites, but are able to interact directly with the end customer. The other cool thing about the RSS feeds is that you can include feeds from other blogs on yours thereby increasing your traffic and easing some of the burden of continuously developing fresh content yourself.

Shannon said...

I can see many ways I might use a blog in my classroom. A blog is a great communication tool. It could be used to keep parents informed of what's going on in the classroom, or to have students communicating about different topics you are discussing in your classroom. I can also see it being used to connect students from other schools with the students in my classroom. I would love to set them up with penpals, and this would be a quick and easy way to do that.

Andrew said...

I like what other people said about using blogs to keep parents updated on what is going on in the classroom. At Northrop, Edline, our internet communication tool for grades, assignments, etc does a great job of doing just that. I think I would use blogging to have students write about in class topics (Reconstruction, Cold War, Civil Rights topics etc...) Depending on all students having access to the internet at home, blogs could be assigned for homework, brought into the class using my computer and projector and used for discussion, and as an arena for student debates. I think it would also be great for students to critique other blogs as well as their own. I might use the 'best' or 'most interesting' blog as an in-class writing assignment in which the entire class must respond to that person's blog. I think it will be a great tool and probably will get more ideas as I put the blogging to use.

Jenny said...

I am not real familiar with using blogs. I have never used them in my classroom before, but I would like to try it. I could use a blog for posting assignments, morning work, daily oral language, or to post a daily class schedule. This could be used to communicate with students when they have questions about class or homework assignments. This would also be an easy way to communicate with parents. I could also use blogging to communicate with teachers for coplanning.

Bill said...

I am a middle school science teacher and can see many applications to creating my own blog page and I can see how students could learn from creating their own blogs as well. From my own blog page students could be asked to comment weekly on a question that I submit. Blogging can also be a forum for students to ask questions that they were either too shy to ask, or didn't have time in class to ask. Not only could I see what everyone is thinking but they could see each others comments as well. Blogging could be very useful for students who don’t like to speak up in class but who have very good and insightful thoughts to share.

Mango said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mango said...

In addition to posting rules, syllabi, homework assignments, calendars and parent communication referred to in many of the posts above, as a high school English teacher, I envision using blogs to continue building on the fabulous foundation of Literature Circles formed by K-8 classroom teachers. We don't really have time to squeeze Lit. Circles into the weekly curriculum in traditional high school classes, but we could do it as a homework/extension activity via blogs. Group members could have separate assignments (jigsaw reading) or tasks (e.g. word wizard, visualizer, character analyst) and use the blog to share their findings. I can see students designing social networking page for a literary character and having other students comment "in character" to one another's blogs. Or they could simply respond to book discussion questions and comment insightfully on their classmates' ideas.

Blogs could readily be used as a part of the writing process. Quick writes, journals and responses to literature could easily be completed on a classroom blog and the blog aggregator is a terrific way to build a community of readers and writers.

While many districts give students and parents online access to grade books, I think parents might appreciate seeing some of the formative evaluation steps involved in grading. Posting the components of a research project on a blog along with clear examples of a grading rubric for would be helpful.

Barry Culbertson said...

I see using a blog in the classroom as an effective way to communicate with parents. This could involve school lunch menus, classroom policies, opening and closing times for schools, and information on special prgrams,
A blog could also be used for teachers and staff to communicate on what works and doesn't work regarding discipline issues and teaching different subjects.

D.Chris Singleton said...

I am very excited about using blogs in my Social Studies class. Our school system is already using edline so I just use that to post grades, assignments, and syllabuses. I could see using blogs for the football team I coach. It would be a neat way to post summaries of games and post videos of the games etc. In the classroom I could see doing a blog about each chapter or topic and having the students put their thoughts down. Our school has put a large focus on writing and instead of tradition pen and paper journals a blog would be a cool place to do their weekly journal writings and to allow other to comment on them. Many times in class discussions it is hard to get everyone to participate, but I think using a blog many students would be much more willing to put their thoughts down and contribute to discussions. I am still unsure though about how I would set blogs up for 130 students. Would each student have a blog? Would I have one blog and all students comment on the same one? I feel I have a good feel for using the blog for myself, but will need some work on learning how to set it up for so many classroom users.

physical fit for life said...

Communication between teacher, students and parents. A teacher can post assignments, calendar, etc. with students and parents. Students that have missed classes could also see what the topic(s) were on the days that he/she missed.

Classrooms can expand beyond the traditional walls of a room in a school. For instance I live in Peoria, IL and I can particitpate in this class.

Blogs would get the student that would not otherwise participate in class discussions to add to the dialogue.

Ackbar said...

I am not a teacher, but i have worked with blogs before. It was a great way for communication and feed back.

I was involved in a project where we used a blog to communicate ideas and schedules. We were creating a independant film for the visual communication design department and we were able to keep up to date with script changes, shoot dates. We were also able to post concept ideas and share our critiques with each other.

Abby said...

In my class, I plan to use a blog to keep in contact with parents. I will put posts with informational updates on it, whether it is just weekly reminders, things to be studying, problems we're having in the classroom, and especially help that is needed. For example, I already created my parent blog and I put a sample post that was of our first field trip info. I told the info, stated that we would be needing 3-4 parent volunteers, and to contact me if they were willing.
I also plan to use a blog in my classroom with my students to have them write, but answering topics that I have posted about things we are studying. I just want to make sure that it is a safe blog site. So far in this class and my other class from this summer, I have used blogger.com and ning.com that has blogs. I feel that ning has a little more of what I want for the students, but I am not certain yet.

Vanessa said...

As a middle school science teacher, I could use the blog as a way for my students to get notes, handouts, and additional information about the science topic we are studying. I could also post pictures of the students doing experiments and links to other home projects and relevant news articles. Students always love to see pictures of themselves, so it would be a great way for them to watch themselves and other students learning about science.
I could also have a link for parents, upcoming students, or staff members where additional information would be available.

SeƱora Riley said...

I really like the blogs not only because it is infomational but it allows people to comment or ask questions about what has been written. I think it could be used in the classroom for many different things. It could be used for parents for weekly newsletters which would include what has been going on in the class, reminders, and upcoming events, whether in the class or in the school as a whole. Elementary teachers write weekly or biweekly newsletters, why shouldn't middle school and/or high school teachers too? It could also be used for parents and students who have questions that others may have too. Teachers could respond to the question as opposed to individual parents. I think that it would be beneficial to improve communication between teachers and parents. Sometimes it seems like the only interaction between teacher and parent are grades and discipline issues. Personally, I find that my students don't take home important letters or newsletters given from the school in middle school or high school, nor do they relate messages correctly from their parents, but I think that parents would enjoy knowing what is going on and having an active share in the classroom. It would also save a lot of paper too. Just think, just one newsletter for each of my students would be about 120 copies. That's just for me. That doesn't even include copies for those who may have misplaced them.

Interestingly, many parents want to learn Spanish, so I could even include information so that the parents could learn some Spanish themselves and help them kids too.

I think that it would be a wonderful tool for a student's writing journal based on cultural topics in the class. It would provide an avenue for not only me to comment but also allows other students to comment as well. I think that students would take it more serious if they knew that what they wrote was being posted. They would take pride in what they do, not merely view it as an assignment. I think that they would enjoy sharing it with along with comments with their family as well. Another benefit for teachers would again be less paperwork. I know that I have had my students in the past keep writing journals and I found myself dragging it home, making comments on each entry, and then dragging back the 120 composition books. Doing a blog on the computer would be so more helpful to everyone who is involved.

The only problem I see with it is that all school don't have access to the computers on a consistent basis. It seems like for our school it was impossible to get to work on computers for research, projects, etc because of all of the other required testing or criterion writing prompts.

Kevin said...

Let me brainstorm some ideas of how I might use a blog in my teaching:

* To distribute links to course material, instructional videos, or other files to students and families.

* To distribute class information to students and families.

* To receive comments and input back from parents and students regarding a class activity, e.g., volunteers needed for a special event.

* To enable my college-level students to comment and reply to a particular reading or video assignment, so the entire class can be in discussion with each other.

* To establish a site where college-level students can link to their own blogs, or to blogs of my colleagues.

Angela said...

There are many ways that I could use a blog in my classroom. Since I'll be teaching middle school, I think that it would be a good this for the students to utilize. However, I'll be in a Catholic school where the parents may not be as open to the idea. I would first start with using a blog to keep lines of communication open with the parents. I think that I could offer the parents to check it out and get involved with it by posting the students assignments and letting parents post questions or concerns they may have on each assignment. Also, it could be used to inform parents of all the extra things going on in the classroom rather than sending home a lot of fliers. Once the parents are comfortable, easing the students into using the blog would follow. It is a great tool for having the students post ideas or comments for discussion to use later in class. Also, if the students have quesitons for me over the weekend or long holiday breaks. I could establish certain days or days and times that I would check the blog and respond to the students or their parents. These are some of the ideas I thought of and things that I could use a blog for in my classroom.

Josh said...

A blog would be good in that my students would have more access to the material. Also I believe that they would find it handy to have the ability to cross questions to other students. In turn a blog would take the standard format of a class, and convert it to a new level. So many teachers always wonder if there students are consistently engaging in the material. Well a blog would be a good sign for the teacher to see the other students.

Emily said...

In the near future I am planning to be in the Adminstration department. Using a blog to post calendars for meeting, time off, parties or just updated information about the doctors and the company in genearl. It seems we are always spending so much time emailing. It would be nice to just go somewhere and find out what is going on.

Lindsey said...

I have been brainstorming ideas with myself about how I would be able to use my blog to challenge my higher achieving students. I teach in a very low school district so I know that I cannot expect many of my students to regularly check their blogs, especially if they are blocked at the school, however, I think that some of the higher level students would could be challenged by regular, challenging posts as well as "interesting facts" that I don't always have time to share in class. I am also hoping that I will be able to get a MOBI in my classroom this year and I could post my lessons through my blog as well.

andyheller said...

I would not necessarily use the blog in my classroom, but could definitely use it to connect with parents about what is happening in class, and upcoming events! I can also use a blog for the cheerleaders to relay fun ideas, videos, cheer examples, etc...

Joyelle Kennedy said...

Where I work I can see the Sunshine Committee using blogging to help post up and coming events, birthdays, and info in general. I think it would be a good communication tool instead of sending out mass emails.

Travis Fisher said...

*Link to outside resources to supplement reading or writing assignments. Have students link to outside resources that they find.

*Provide a forum to continue in-class discussions.

*Blogging as journal writing.

*Have students submit writing assignments on blogs as part of "real world" application.

*Expose students to "professional" bloggers and have them respond to their ideas and interact with them.

Shane Miles said...

I am not in the classroom yet, but I can see using a blog as a way of discussing core curricula issues, salient points from instructional content, etc. A blog could also be used to recap pertinent issues that have been discussed, feedback from deliberative debates, and the ways in which new content overlaps with previous learning.

On a personal level, I would like to create a blog that lists movies, poems, music, and art that has impacted my life, along with explanations/analysis as to why these artifacts are meaningful to me as a thinker.

andyheller said...

Communicating with parents regarding: changes in schedule, grades, upcoming need for volunteers, praise for students, suggested websites, etc...

So many things can be posted on a blog! :)

klyons said...

I'm not sure how comfortable I would be introducing blogging into my classroom, as I am unsure of the stance of my building principal and my school system in general. I think it would be a great tool to use for communicating with students as well as parents. I would like to be able to share information with parents without having to send a mass email everyday or every week. I also think it could serve as a forum for questions and answers. If I happened to have a particularly ambitious group of students, I would love to use a blog for student journal writing. This might prove difficult for me, as all of my students do not have Internet access. I think overall, there are numerous possibilities for blogging in my middle school classroom.

Christine Russell said...

I could envision myself using a blog as a response to literature activity with my students. Every month our school has what is called, "flex week." During this week, classroom teachers are encouraged to work with the computer and library specialists to create meaningful learning activities for the students. I would love to use this time to create a thought provoking question for students to answer and discuss based upon a specific piece of literature.
I could also see a blog as a means of parental communication, not just between teachers and parents but also parents and parents. Maybe a parent has a transportation need or an emergency arises where they could use some help. A blog would be an excellent way to help one another communicate.

ChrisHudecek said...

Some ways that I think blogs could be useful in a school setting:

- to keep parents informed about what is going on in their child's classroom. Students could even take turns being responsible for writing the blog entry of the day.

- to let parents know where volunteers and material donations are needed at the school (i.e. Mrs. Smith is collecting paper towel rolls for a project next month.)

- as a forum for teachers to share ideas and useful websites. They could also ask for suggestions and resources on teaching specific topics.

- for students to share ideas and "publish" work. It could be a great way to do editing and revisions.

- to provide students with websites and additional material relating to class topics and assignments

Faith S. said...

A blog can be used in teaching for instruction and to keep parents informed. Blogs would also help limit the use of paper.
Blogs would also help limit some of the repetitive excuses that teachers get from students like: I lost my print-out, I couldn't find the links, etc.
Introducing a new unit maybe more interesting to the students when they get the opportunity to explore a blog instead of a textbook or photocopied text.
Class content would be available for parents and students. Parents would be able to have a better understanding of what their child is studying. Parents could be more hands on with their child's education.