Monday, October 24, 2011

Day 1- Blogger/Blogging in the Classroom


Welcome!

Kudos to all of you who are embarking on this challenge with us. Today, in an attempt to get everyone on the same (web)page, our challenge is the blog tool Blogger. If you are unfamiliar with what a blog is, here is a quick video to get you up to speed:



Blogger is the blogging website with which this 30 Day Challenge was created, and it is a great site for getting started with blogging in the classroom.

Setting Up

Before we jump into some of the possible applications of Blogger in the classroom, the first part of today's challenge is to learn three basic tasks related to participating in a discussion on a Blogger blog.

First, we need to set up our online profile:



Next, we need to subscribe to the blog as a member of this online community:



Finally, we need to post a comment to the blog post to participate in the discussion:



Exploring Blogger for the Classroom

We chose Blogger as a featured communication tool for three reasons. First, there are many blogs that can enhance your own professional learning.While not all of these were created in Blogger, you will see that many bloggers use the familiar Blogger template. Click the link below for a short list of some of our favorite blogs to follow:

Some of our favorite blogs to follow

Second, Blogger is an excellent host for building a blog to use in your classroom. Blogs can be used to extend the classroom in many ways:




20 Reasons Why Students Should Blog
33 Ways to Use Blogs in Your Classroom

Here are some examples of teacher blogs from our corporation (past and current):

The Sweater Vest Blog (2008-2009)
Mr. Flake's Science Class (Current)
Mrs. Esparza's Math Classroom (Current)
Mr. Bennet's Blog (Current)
Jammin' With the Jets (Current)

Third, inviting students to blog is an excellent way to develop student voice and to give students an authentic audience for their work. The link below has some great examples of student blogging in the classroom:

The EduBlogger- Check Out Class Blogs!

If you are interested in exploring blogging in the classroom, we recommend the following resources to get you started:

EVSC ICATS- Resources for Bloggers
Great Blogging Advice from Vicki Davis (Cool Cat Teacher)

Finally, here are some resources related to getting started with Blogger itself:

The Essentials of Using Blogger to Publish Your Blog
Blogger Help YouTube Channel
Blogger Features

The Challenge

Throughout the 30 Day Web 2.0 Challenge, your task will be to share your experiences and ideas about the various web tools we highlight. While there is no specific length requirement for your comments, we hope that you will keep in mind the opportunity that we all have to learn from one another's reflections. It's a good practice to read the other comments and then add to or enhance the conversation with your own perspective.

Your Assignment: Comment to this Post with your own ideas about how Blogger/ blogging could have an impact on your professional practice, or share your experience/ advice related to using this tool. Also, if you have a classroom blog, we'd love to know about it. Please share the URL.

86 comments:

  1. When I set up my reitzhistory blog on blogger, I was surprised how easy it was. After playing around with it for an hour or so, I had figured out everything I needed it to do. The fact that you can restrict who can see your blog and who can post in the blog are very helpful when using it with a class. Look in the settings under the permissions tab to restrict access to the blog. If anyone is interested in seeing my poorly updated blog, go to reitzhistory.blogspot.com

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  2. I actually learned how to use this site from my wife. She had created a blog for our family a couple of years ago. I was quite surprised how easy it was to setup. I decided to set one up for my technology class this year. I use it not only for students but also for parents to follow what we are doing in class. I do my best to update it at least every other week. You can see my blog at: misterjaques.blogspot.com

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  3. I could use this blog to pass along and share info with students regarding up coming dates for college tours, 21st Century Enrollment, and as well as other things. I often pass out papers to students to take home but this could help with that process. I have not used this before so appreciate the experience with this blog.

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  4. I blog as a way to reflect on what's going on in my professional (and occasionally personal) life. There are a variety of ideas that randomly pop into my head and blogging represents a way to get them out. Blogging has also allowed me to connect ideas with other like-minded teachers (like a certain science teacher in your school).

    I have recently started having my students blog their science lab notebooks. I realized that students have a limited vocabulary to describe observations. Since they already have a cell phone, what if they could take a picture to back up their written description? This spun off into blogging their labs so that they could post the pictures with their data tables. Here is an example of one: nelson-labbook213.blogspot.com/ It is strictly volunteer right now, but the kids who are doing it are much more attentive in the lab because they are already thinking about how to structure their write-up so they are looking at all of the minor details of the reactions. I highly encourage everyone to both blog themselves as well as get their kids to blog.

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  5. A bolg is useful in letting your students know the happening of the day, week, month, or semester. Students can stay up to date with when homework is due, quizzes will be given, or when field trips are.
    This is extremely useful for students that are absent to see what they missed before they come back to school!
    Another tool is if a sub was needed, you can post what they needed to do for the day just to make sure the information was given correctly!

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  6. I enjoy starting the class using a video that showcases a math problem in my blog. It feels like we are going on a mini field trip to my backyard, the halls of school, outside, in my laundry room...wherever I see a math problem. (esparzamath.blogspot.com) To get videos to upload to your blog so that students can view them on netbooks, use www.schooltube.com and create your own channel.

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  7. I started a blog last spring, but my issue is now I feel so much (self-inflicted) pressure to be brilliant, to have something important and meaningful to say that people would want to tune in to read, and to have the time to keep it updated! Those are all major stumbling blocks for me. I like MSeigal's idea of having students blog instead of just paper/pen notebooking. I can definitely see the potential in that, but then I wonder how tools overlap, because you can also do a discussion board type thing in Angel, so I guess I struggle with 'what is the best tool for the job?', as well as 'what is the job?' I think a blog could help me forward my work to a larger audience, but maybe I'm still struggling with the 'voice' piece.

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  8. This 30 day challenge is a great idea

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  9. Blogging is a great way to "spread the news" about technology integration! Just read the comments already posted to see what I mean.

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  10. I use blogs for various reasons, depending on the task you are trying to accomplish.
    One, I write on my personal blog. I usually focus on education, policy, technology, and pedagogy, but sometimes I delve into other areas. Dr. Blue, part of the blogging process is simply reflection. I write when I need to hash some thoughts out or simply get things out of my head. I don't go into writing thinking that I'm going to change the world. If I'm reflecting honestly and openly, then I'm accomplishing my goal. If other educators (or just readers) find meaning and purpose in what I write, then its a bonus, not the end-goal.
    Second, like MSeigel, I'm having all of my learners use a blog this year. Some days it is for a lab write-up, others it is for reflecting on their learning for that day or week. In the end, I'm simply trying to teach them to use Web 2.0 tools to write and reflect. If they don't use them ever again, that's okay with me. If you want to see my learner's blog, you can go to http://brianbennett.org/student. My blog is listed in the post (brianbennett.org/blog).

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  11. I have never blogged.. It sounds like it could be an excellent tool to communicate with students as well as them with each other in discussing Math concepts they find difficult. For me, the difficulity is finding time for me to set it up and keep up with it. There’s just so much to do in the world of education right now.

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  12. I used blogs the last two years that I was in the classroom as my learning management system (pre-Angel). I like it because I was able to interact with my students more. Here are some things that I learned from that experience: 1. Change up the content often. 2. Create a lot of opportunities for students to interact and participate. 3. Clearly post your expectations for participation on the blog. 4. Let kids have a voice in determining ways that the blog is used. 5. Let the blog reflect who you are as a person.

    These days, I use my blog as a reflection tool. I try to use the opportunity a blog offers to help me work through my thoughts as they develop over time. My current blog is The Playground Advocate (http://playgroundadvocate.blogspot.com). Like Dionne, I struggle with the pressure to "be brilliant", but I find that when I take time to sit down and write often, the pressure diminishes. I do like that when I write something I am proud of, I have contributed to my personal learning network by tweeting my post to my followers.

    If anyone would like more info about blogging, we can set up a session or two at the TIC this year, so let us know if that would be useful to you.

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  13. Blogging is a great tool. I could see myself using this in my Spanish classroom and feel the students would enjoy and benefit from it. Creating real-world scenarios, utilizing technology, and increasing student engagement and participation are all positive aspects of blogging.

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  14. I have heard about teachers using blogs in their classrooms, but have yet to try it myself. After looking at the information above and playing around with the blogger, I believe that this would be a great tool for my classroom. The students use their netbooks to complete their daily bell work through GoogleDocs. If I were to set up a blog I could post a daily discussion question and the students could comment back and forth on topics about what we are reading. It would be a wonderful way to get their opinions and to discuss this way!

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  15. I find blogs to be valuable for my own professional learning. I follow several music education and music ed technology blogs to get ideas and resources for my classroom. A couple of my favorites are techinmusiced.wordpress.com and musiced-technology.blogspot.com It is really convenient to read these in Google Reader and catch up on them when I have a few minutes of down time.

    I have a personal blog for my family on blogger, but I have yet to try it with my class. I will be starting the audition process for our spring musical soon and I am brainstorming ways that I could use blogging to help students through that process. I would then continue the blog through rehearsals and use it as a way to get info to parents as well.

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  16. I follow A LOT of teaching blogs and have gained a wealth of new ideas and teacher-created documents and activities. Many of the blogs have stores on www.teacherspayteachers.com but give away some of their documents for free. I discovered more blogs than I have time to keep up with this summer through www.teachingblogaddict.com. Facebook is a great way to follow blogs as well because most blog writers also have Facebook pages and post their blog links to the newsfeed. I teach first grade and haven't used blogs with my class, but we did add "blog" to our -og word family list! :)

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  17. While I feel blogging can be a useful tool in classroom to help in various aspects and can think of various ways to use in my on Japanese classroom, I'm not so sure my students would jump on the bandwagon. I already tried to use the discussion board feature on Angel with little success. While it wasn't the lack of skills in knowing how to use it, it's the lack of that little four letter word we are all in desperate need of, time.
    In teaching Japanese, I teach not only teach how to speak, but read, write, listen, and comprehend. While teaching the schematics necessary to English along with Japanese, my students can't handle much else. I could incorporate it as an extra credit assignment, or an after quiz pick up assignment.
    If I were to use it in my classroom, it would most likely be for current news, thoughts, ideas, or discussions about Japanese culture and it's revelancy in our lives.
    I do have a personal blog, but as mentioned before, time is not on my side.I also follow quite a few, when but can't keep up with it as much as I'd like.

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  18. Several people have mentioned following teaching blogs. It would be great if you could share some of your personal favorites here.

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  19. I find myself searching blogs quite often as you can get a true glimpse into a product or learning method. There is always someone out there who is willing to share their excitement, struggle, or dislike for almost anything! I have just recently started blogging as a way to share ideas with other teachers.

    I have a number of other educators whose blogs I like to follow. These blogs are a great way to learn new ideas, software, and technology that are beneficial to the classroom. One classroom idea I was excited about trying was asking students to keep a listening journal as a blog. I think it would be great to see young musicians grow as they listen to and write about music.

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  20. I have set up a blog to document how I am using technology in my music classroom. Looking forward to learning more about it!

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  21. I enjoy reading professional blogs and have gotten some neat tips. I have not blogged before, but I think I could use it to get neat tidbits to the students that I do not have time to get to in class.

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  22. I can see this being a great communication tool. Everyday one of my students could get on our blog and update what we did that day so that parents could keep up with our progress. Maybe a "blogger" could be a classroom job for the week. :)

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  23. I have always been interested in blogging and enjoy following some professional blogs, but I never really knew of a good way to utilize the program in class. I feel like we have so many communication tools, that it can sometimes be overwhelming to keep up with them all. I liked MSeigel’s ideas of student’s blogging to create their science journal. I really think this is a manageable way for me to utilize a blog in my class. Thanks for the tip!

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  24. I like this idea. It seems in the near future that netbooks will find their way into my grade level. This experience will be helpful.

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  25. @laura.gossman I love the idea of a designated blogger. What a great way to bring students into the reflective process!

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  26. I have started a blog through my grad school classes. I would like to get to the point where I can use it with my students in class on a regular basis. There are many great opportunities for this piece of technology.

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  27. I can be an out loud processor when trying to work through information. Unfortunately, the right audience for this conversation is not always around when I am ready to jump into process mode. This certainly could facilitate my need to process and help me connect with others.

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  28. I have taken classes before where the teacher has all the links for what the class did that (kind of like Angel) but then used the blog to explain and to talk via video clips in the blog. I haven't personally used in the classroom but I found extremely helpful when I was a student. Thanks for a reminder!

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  29. Wow! This was my first time to blog, and I have to say, it was pretty exciting! I still have a lot to learn, but I love this challenge because it is motivating me to try new things and providing a venue to collaborate with others. Thanks iCats for thinking this up!

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  30. I am excited to see what new things I can learn. So it's good to have some motivation (ipad2) to take the time to experiment!

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  31. I could see myself using it as a way to help students keep up with assignments and activities. I have never used a blog before, but this site seems fairly intuitive and user friendly.

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  32. There are so many advantages to blogging and I have to make sure to start using this in my classroom.

    First, it is important to keep in mind that this is how kids communicate with each other. Whenever we can take the assignment to them (so to speak) we will get better buy in and greater participation. Kids want to share with each other naturally, so this taps into that.

    At the same time, I think it has to be in the back of your mind how they blog. Most of our kids are in the Facebook or Twitter mentality. In other words, they limit themselves to a set number of characters. I would imagine that their first ventures into blogging would mirror that and would be short. Could that be good? Sure, if they were to the point, which is exactly what you have to be when you are limited by a character count.

    Secondly, I think this would be a great way to promote shared responsibility of learning. It doesn't have to be the teacher spewing out knowledge. The kids have the chance to weight in with their own thoughts in a forum where their opinions carry just as much weight as their teacher's. And since they are allowed to speak at will, they are more free to share than they might be in a constricted classroom environment where they are distinct rules on when they can and can not contribute their thoughts.

    Finally, I want to do this because it shifts the timeline of learning. I can see where blogging would allow connections between topics. Instead of one topic, then another, you could have a thread that has several different ideas and how they relate to each other. It is more like a conversation instead of a disjointed and disconnected lecture.

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  33. Enjoying al lof the posts so far. I was first grade and recently was moved to 4th due to low numbers. I wish our building had better technology for our students. Our 6th grade has netbooks this year and can see this being great for them. I learned a tom about blogging at ICE and am excited to put some of the ideas from there and ICE to use. Only if more of my students had the technology at home, which mine do not. Oh well I guess a couple of years down the road 4th will finally get. I do blog as part of my Masters class and find many of the ideas very helpful. We are going to have to do an audio blog this week so I will let you know how that goes! Giving kids the audience they need to want to learn, to do the homework, and to achieve is I think the key to blogging.

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  34. Forgive my poor typing that I just noticed a big typo. Guess the only thing that I am weak at. I really should have paid more attention in typing class on that old thing called a typewriter. I told myself I would never use one of those. Little did I know that yes not one of those but a keyboard none the less!!!

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  35. I don't currently use blogs in my classroom as I teach K-3. However, I would love to see a blog used between the teachers at our school. We could definitely beg, borrow, and steal a lot easier! :)

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  36. I think blogging would be a good tool for kids to use because kids are not always inclined to participate aloud during class, but might feel comfortable to do it in a blog. Also, blogging allows kids to comment whenever they like. They can just jump online.

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  37. I've been thinking about using blogging in my classroom for a few months now. I'm hoping that it will help teach students voice in writing, plus it is a new writing genre to explore. I teach 3-5 writing and using blogs could really help prepare them for the upper grades and promote self-expression. I am concerned with the availability for my students and how to make sure that every student has a chance to comment. I'd hate to create something that becomes a once a month activity when it should be an ongoing discussion. I still want to try it out and see how it goes though.

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  39. I have read sports blogs before. I would like to learn more about blogs.

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  40. I have joined some of the professional communities on the IDOE’s Learning Connection site. I have learned a great deal about the CCSS, DIBELS and ISI. I also like to browse the blogs posted on Promethean Planet. They give me ideas on how to utilize Web 2.0 tools with the Promethean Board to make my ActivClassroom more engaging.

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  41. I started using Blogger in college at IU. We used Blogger to communicate with our professors about experiences we had while using different tech tools on the internet. Instead of emailing our professor every time, we only sent him one email with our Blogger URL and he checked our blogs for our homework.
    I have yet to use it in my classroom, but eventually plan on making my own website using Blogger for my students. Maybe this will motivate me to do so!

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  42. I do not have much experience with blogger. I enjoy reading some blogs, and I would also like to find teaching blogs to follow.

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  43. I subscribe to many blogs for ideas. Unfortunately a lot of them are blocked by lightspeed! Don't have time to write.

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  44. Blogging is such a great way to reflect on ideas and experiences. It's also a great way to share out and to stretch the thinking of others. I know my blog, www.educationdreamer.blogspot.com, isn't perfect but I enjoy taking time to write. If nothing else, it's good therapy for me.

    In a classroom, students could blog about a book they are reading, a period in history, or about thoughts they had during a homework assignment. Could you imagine a history blog where the student wrote a blog as if they were experiences the event in history?

    I think there are just numerous ways to use blogs in the classroom. Want more ideas? Ask a student...

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  45. @Frau Brandt - Here is a livebinder Tim Wilhelmus and I put together. http://bit.ly/rRjtqL Under the blog tab is a list of teaching blogs to follow.

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  46. This is my first time blogger, but have read others blogs. I can use this to share strategies and ideas with other coaches.

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  47. I've never used a blog before in class, but I do use discussion boards through Angel in a similar manner. I could definitely see how students would be more interested in a blog than a discussion board. It would be a great way to collect ideas, previous knowledge, and reflections of what we do in class. It seems like a great way to share ideas with others and get their feedback, just like what we're doing here in the 30 day challenge.

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  48. I love to read blogs by fellow educators for inspiration and professional development. I have a blog to communicate with parents about the netbooks. It is http://jamminjets.blogspot.com/. I am still in the beginning stages for blogging. I hope to get much better at it in the future.

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  50. Like other people who have commented, I haven't used a blog before in class. I could definitely see myself incorporating it into my classes as a way for students to express their ideas and reflect on labs and activities. Not only would a blog be great resource for students, but for myself to communicate with parents about what is happening in my classroom.

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  51. I have never blogged before but I think it would be a great way to get information out to parents. I have looked online at other school social worker blogs and it would give parents and students both a way to learn more about school and community resources.

    I think it may be difficult to get students and their parents invovled but if you offered some sort of incentive or made a game out of it, it could really be helpful.

    I may have to give it a try :-)

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  52. Like many others, I've never blogged....But after watching the tutorials above, I'm eager to use this in my Economics classroom and within my Special Education Department to discuss practically everything and anything.

    Students are screen oriented, everything is done via a screen these days. I see this is an opportunity to engage them in discussions in and outside of the classroom. Thanks for sharing!

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  53. Blogging seems like a great way for our students to have voice in the classroom. They can share their oppinions and read the oppinions of their classmates. It could also be a way for us to hear the views of our shy or quiter students who do not always feel comfortable sharing out loud.

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  54. Glad to see so many people who are willing and ready to give blogs a try! We hope that this 30-Day Challenge will give you many more tools to use and learn with your students! Keep it up!

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  55. I started a blog some time back at a workshop but never really did anything with it...this is giving me incentive to dust it off and see where I can take it. I agree that sometimes students will open up a bit more on a blog or discussion forum than they will in class so I am looking forward to seeing what happens

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  56. I attended a workshop this past summer and the presenter was all about blogging. I came home very excited and created my blog. The presenter had many great ideas on ways to use a blog as a educational tool. I have not been as successful getting people/students/parents, to use the blog as I would have liked. I hope that with time and experience I will be better equipped to use the blog in my classroom.

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  57. This is very cool. It is great to see so many participating. Good luck!

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  58. I use Blogger already in the classroom. I had my students use the EVSC google email addresses to create a blog. Then, they all created their personal blogger sites. I personally follow all of their blogs and enjoy reading their posts. I love to see them make new posts that are not assignments!

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  59. As with all the other great technology at our fingertips right now, blogging is an excellent idea. Unfortunately, I see it getting lost in the massive file of all the other great ideas I have been introduced to by the ICATS, our coaches, and others...the problem I have is 1. of course, like everyone else, finding the time to "play" with it, and 2. remembering how to "do" it after I have learned it. My goal is to incorporate blogging into my classroom activities by next school year. I like Ashlee Holland's idea in her post of having my students creating their own personal blogs...that sounds easy enough, and something we can enjoy together as a classroom family.

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  60. Boy, It took along time to figure out how to post a comment.

    I have a blog of my students' work

    alicesartroom.blogspot.com

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  61. I started a personal blog that my family is going to use as a journal to share notable moments. I think a blog would be a great tool to use communicate with students.

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  62. I really liked the idea about using a blog for student science notebooks. Predictions, conclusions, claims and evidence could be shared between students. The students could also refute each other's ideas, add to each other's questions and/or ideas, and ask questions of the teacher as well. I think you could also use the blog to connect with parents about classroom activities, assignments, common questions and concerns, and allow the parents to communicate with each other, which I think rarely happens.

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  63. I am excited to start my own Blog. I have wanted to start a counseling blog for students to have easy access to resources and information that I can offer. I also want to create an area will students can communicate back and forth with me. Many students are more comfortable communicating via computer, than face to face.

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  64. I loved reading all the comments and being able to get so many great ideas. I have not used a blog before, but love the blog my son's teacher has for his class. My wheels are turning on how to use a blog to better assist the teachers I work with. Maybe a blog to share different apps and how to use them in the classroom might be something to try.

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  65. I am a first time blogger. I am an occupational therapist. The blogging could be a good tool for special education teachers to network and for therapists to share information with each other and with teachers or even parents.

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  66. Blogging is a good way to have interaction with students - posting some information up, or a question, and then using the comments thread for discussion is great. Or allowing students to actually post directly to the blog - more risky but potentially very rewarding

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  67. Wow, what amazing ideas for utilizing a blog. As a PD and iPod/iPad crazed person I have considered creating a blog that would make it easier to share "Kid tested, teacher approved" apps for the classroom. These could be education based apps or non-education based apps that can be used as the basis for some sort of lesson. I have the idea, now I just need to make the time to create it!

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  68. I've thought about using a blog to provide a quick daily update for my parents. Is there a way to know if the blog is actually being read by parents?

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  69. @ Carolyn, On a blog there is a "Stats" option that tracks certain information about who views and posts to the blog. This tracking includes many things such as the website that lead them to the blog, what type of operating system they used, and from what country they are viewing from, but to my knowledge it does not track specific people who view it.

    Interesting fun fact, this blog has had international viewers from nine other countries!

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  70. Not sure what happened, but my post ended up on the welcome page. Here is what I wrote on day one:
    Blogging would be a great way for an administrator or educator to keep parents informed about what is happening at school. Parents would probably appreciate an update on what is going on at their child's school more often than a monthly school newsletter. Think it would be interesting if our Student Council or NEHS created a blog. LOVE my school!

    Love reading blogs and my favorite educational blog right now is The Book Whisperer. Have to say, though, that I adore checking out blogs created by artists, especially photographers and jewelry designers.

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  71. Also...
    Yikes! Think I've started a ROUGH blog spot;-) If I could do it, anyone could do it. Bible!
    http://fairlawnneu.blogspot.com/

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  72. I think blogging is an excellent way to relay information about things that are going on. I think this would be a great way to keep parents informed about what is going on in the classroom. I could set up a blog and write the different things our class is doing. You could also put students in charge of writing the classroom blog. They could write about the cool and neat projects that they are doing in the classroom.

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  73. At the beginning of the year, I created a blog for my 1st period students and that is as far as it went. Other technology learning needed to take place first. We needed to learn Angel, Google Apps, using netbooks, Open Office, saving files, etc.
    Our student book club started today, so I made a quick page to use as we read our books. It should be fun!

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  74. I currently only use the blog feature of Angel, but I found it to be unattractive and not very user friendly. Now that all students have access to google and blogger, and I planning to do some bell ringer type activities with my students so they can read every one else's ideas in real time.

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  75. I think any form of blogging, when used correctly can benefit literally any subject. I am in the works of implementing a blog for my science class and intend to use it as a means to report findings from each lab we do. This is a great way to practice scientific writing and know that your work will be viewed by a wider audience. Accountability for the quality will push students to work harder and be clear in their writing. Plus, with uploading pictures, it can be made more fun!

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  76. I've used blogs in my 12AP English and Creative Writing classes. I found them to be a great tool for extending the class discussion, giving students a real world forum for their thinking, and as an additional way to build community.

    Lesson learned: don't script the blog questions too much for students or you'll get the same responses from every student.

    As an academic coach, I think I might create a blog to share my learning with the teachers I work with.

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  77. My class blogs: http://12apwilhelmus2010.blogspot.com/
    http://12apwilhelmus.blogspot.com/

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  78. I am going to create a class blog for my AP students as they read The Things They Carried. Looking forward to the results.

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  79. Often times, my classes will be in a deep discussion when the bell rings. Although class is over, the discussion isn't. Sadly, not all students get to share their thoughts. I think creating a class blog would enable us to continue our discussions...even after the bell.

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  80. Exploring blogs from other educators have been beneficial (Dan Meyer). I think having a student blog to conduct discussions could be very beneficial. It does seem that a blog tends to be more appropriate to discuss literature, history, politics,... I am not sure how much it could be incorporated in mathematics for students. As suggested above, I suppose it could be used for students to ask questions when they get stuck, but I am not sure I could keep up with it (time constraints). I do enjoy learning more about students through some collaborative sharing activities in class. These activities seem to break up the 90 minutes and help them to refocus. I suppose blogs could be used to further their sharing of ideas, cultural experiences, school experiences,... In this way, blogs could give students a greater sense of belonging and importance in the classroom as they share.

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  81. I love the idea of using blogger to set up a comprehensive Chemistry resource website. I have been dreaming about it ever since I used the blog "chronicles of a babywise mom" to get my baby to sleep through the night. The layout of that particular blog was inspiring. I could have detailed tutorials on all of the topics and subtopics in chemistry, indexed by chapter, keywords, etc.. I would love to do this,...if I could find the time! :)

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  82. Or better yet, have my kids compile the blog content for me!

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  83. I think blogging is great idea for the classroom. For a PBL unit, the students could blog about their ideas and possible answers to the driving question. Also, it could be a tool to help assess the students i.e. what workshops do you need to have. This would be much easier to keep up with "knows and need to knows."

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  84. I don't use blogs for personal use, but have used them in classes and as part of classroom projects. As a math teacher I believe that I would probably best be able to use this with a PBL unit, as Marie Damron staid above. It could give the students a chance to share ideas and help each other out if questions are coming up about a part of the project. It could also give me a centralized location to field peoples questions and get an idea of my students understand as the project progresses. I could even use questions posted in the blog to guide my next days instruction in the project itself.

    I do agree that as robinfricke mentioned above it would be hard to keep track of all the comments that are up on the site at one time. You might be able to have the groups pick days that they will lead the discussion by teasing out the main questions that everyone was having and you or other students fielding those questions to start the class.

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