I'm fairly new to blogging, certainly not the expert many of you are, but I've been teaching, writing curriculum and doing technology presentations for years. As I may have mentioned before, I have opinions about everything and "blog lesson plans" did not sneak in under my radar.
My students have been blogging for several months and, all in all, they are doing a super job. You can see the details in my Blogging for Elementary Kids post 1/14/07 I'm stressing blogging as a "formal" writing experience and students must meet certain criteria in their writing; i.e. no IM and chat lingo, no personal drivel, correct grammar, punctuation, capitalization, citation, links, etc. In my opinion the beauty of blogging is the idea of writing for an authentic audience and being able to write discerning and insightful comments.
As I've slogged through the class blogs out there I see them being used for a lot of different purposes, some good some mis-purposed. (is that a word?) I've seen posting of projects, personal kid sites listing neighborhood schools, grades, last names, yikes!, lists of links, home school communication, etc. I hope blogs are not being used as "catch-alls". Blogs are not websites and shouldn't be used as such. Blogs and wikis are so much easier to post to than websites; teachers may latch on to that. Blogs are for communicating, blogs are for writing, thinking, and reflecting, blogs are for debating, discussing and affirming. Blogs give teachers the opportunity to get in there and really talk to kids. I hope they (blogs) don't get watered down...OK not my job to be the the "blog-police".
Some ideas I've thought of that would be appropriate used for blogs:
- book/movie discussions (we're discussing Eragon, the book and the movie)
- student/parent book discussions
- book reviews
- current events (we use RSS feed)
- student opinions
- reflecting on visual images
- reflecting on primary source documents
- student poetry and reflection
- posting student artwork for critiquing
- posting student books for critiquing (we're doing this)
So, you have any ideas you could add? Be sure to check with Dave LaMorte if you do. N.