Collaboration in the UltranetIdeas for Blogs/Wikis andMessage Boards
Journals• – Many require their students to write regular journal entries. Blogs make it easier for students to write and edit these posts and for teachers to read and respond to them.
Book reports, literature circles• Students often are expected to summarize and react to books and other materials they’ve read. Doing this in the form of a blog encourages students to revise and rewrite their thoughts. It also allows other students to comment on the work of their classmates.
Creative writing assignments, shortstories, poetry• A blog can be a great way to showcase student writing, again with the options for other students and even parents to comment on the work.
Display and discussion of studentart work/photography• since pictures, video and audio can be embedded within a blog post, showcasing student work doesn’t have to be limited to their writing.
Student portfolios• Blogs are excellent tools to keep an ongoing record of student work since they offer an easy way to categorize the assignments and find them later.
Class discussions, current events• – Time for discussion in class is limited and some students may not feel comfortable participating. Extending this process to a blog allows everyone to participate, often with more thought and a richness that’s not possible in real time.
Class archive• One student serves as the class recorder each week, entering a summary of activities and major learning. This provides help for students who miss class and review materials for everyone. The rest of the class can add additional information and corrections in the comments.
Role playing• Students could write a blog in the voice of a fictional or real life character and in the process learn more about them.
Class newsletter• Rather than the teacher producing a paper- based record of what’s going on in class, a blog would allow everyone in class to contribute. The result is a living document with a built-in archive.
Collaborative projects with anotherclass• Classes anywhere in the world can work together through one or more blogs.
Science experiment notebook• Rather than have students keep a record of their experiments on paper, a blog allows students to enter and edit their finding from anywhere
Post class assignments, upcomingassignments, project help, calendarsand more• Both students and parents can keep track of what is expected and what deadlines are looming.
Class suggestion box• Asking students for feedback can be easily done in a blog and allowing for comments could get some interesting discussions started.
Communicate with parents• A blog could provide parents with both information and an option to comment.
Journal for teacher researcherprojects• Rather than keep a paper journal that is seen by only a few others, a blog offers to chance to communicate with other teachers interested in the same topics.
Tool for collaboration withcolleagues anywhere• Extending that idea, blogs can be wonderful tools for personal professional development and a way to connect with other teachers.
Links and Videos• Continue finding links, videos on teacher tube, etc that are related to things you’re doing in class and posting them on the blog.
Reflections• Create discussion threads each week where students reflect on what they have been doing in class. Set aside some time each week to look at what students have contributed so they know the contributions are valued.
Reports• Record students’ reading/oral skills and upload them to the wiki so they can reflect on their own ability to read/speak
Online Exercise Book• Give students each a page where they can complete writing tasks and edit them – an “online exercise book”.
Photographs• Photograph things that happen in class so parents get a sense of what’s happening in the classroom.
Exemplary student work• Photograph/scan/record exemplary student work and put them on a page (eg “Student work of the week!”) and start discussions that get students to identify the elements of that work that make it exemplary.
• Create a middle unit newsletter once a fortnight and pop it onto the wiki. Get students to contribute to this.•.
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