Why Not Just A Website? Image From: http://langwitches.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/blog-vs-static-site.jpg
Getting Started With Blogs • Two Way Communication - Teacher posts, students comment • Classroom Communication - Students post, teacher and classmates comment • Global Communication - Students and teacher post, people outside the classroom can comment
Teach Proper Commenting Skills • A good way to practice is to hang a few paper blogs around the room and have students comment using sticky notes. Include examples of poor comments. Discuss comments as a class to point out good commenting vs. poor commenting.
How Have Teachers Used Blogs? • had daily student “bloggers”, who were in charge of updating the classroom blog, being the Official Scribe of the day. • had students take (handwritten notes) summarizing the daily learning during each subject area, to be then typed and uploaded on Friday to the blog (younger grades). • highlighted best work from students as it was produced. • put students in charge of photographing classroom/resource activities and learning taking place during the day, the class discussed and voted on the final images to be uploaded at the end of the day and write a short blurb to each image. http://langwitches.org/blog/2012/10/08/implementing-blogging-in-the-classroom/
• Some classroom blogs were growing beyond homework assignment, as teachers found opportunities to amplify the use of their virtual spaces to get kids involved and engaged in conversation• As commenting and posting to the classroom blog became the routine, especially in the upper elementary grades, students were eager to “earn” their own blogs. It was up to the teacher to set the criteria for students to earn them (ex.5 quality posts moderated and published on the classroom blog).• Once having earned that promotion, students became administrators of their own blogfolio , a combination of an online portfolio and a learning blog. Students were able to choose their own theme from a variety of pre-approved themes available. They chose their own title and tagline, and wrote their About Page. http://langwitches.org/blog/2012/10/08/implementing-blogging-in-the-classroom/
Why Kidblog?• Simple, quick, and easy to set up.• Free!• No email addresses or personal information required for students• Teachers have full control over all blogs• Teacher determines privacy level of the blogs.
Setting Up• On the Kidblog.org main page, click on Create A Class• Fill in your information - Display name (username), Password, Email, & Class Name• Enter anti-spam code, and then create your class!
Control Panel• At the top right of the page, click on Control Panel• This takes you to your control panel, also called a Dashboard• From here you can change your settings, add students and classes, review posts and comments, and more
Important Settings• Title - The name of your blog• URL - The website address of your blog • Can be changed - preferably before students start using the blog• Sign Up Code - Allow students to join using a class code instead of manually adding them• Be sure to allow joining with a code if you use this option
Blogroll• A Blogroll is a list of favorite websites• Be sure to include your classroom website if you have one• You may also want to link to other class blogs, or websites your students use regularly
Post Settings• Who May Read - Set the privacy level of your class • Visitors - public to anyone with the URL • Users in Classes - Only your class, or add other classes • Admin/Teacher Only• Post Approval - Require teacher approval before a student post goes live• Notify - notifies you when a student adds a new post for you to approve• Tags - keywords for posts to make it easier to search for specific topics
Comment Settings• Who May Comment - restrict who can and cannot comment on posts• Comment Approval - require teacher approval of comments• Notify - receive notification when new comments are ready for review and approval