Mulling Over Blogging

I’ve written many posts about my journey with my students and blogging.  Most recently I gave students a survey about their thoughts and ideas on this topic.  This year my students have made huge progress in their ability to think and write about books.  The amount of writing they do is far more than they would have ever done in a notebook and we’ve been able to build an online presence for our classroom community.  We’ve opened our blogs to the outside world and had comments from authors, other students, and teachers. The fifth graders have even started supporting their first grade friends efforts by reading and commenting on their blogs.

One of the things that I did towards the beginning was to try and give students a structure.  Their initial blog posts were short and very casual.  Then they began writing “book reviews.”  Next, they started exploring how to include their thinking about the book.  (This is where some students still reside.)  Now, several students are starting to experiment with voice and point of view.  While I’m glad I gave them the structure to help them learn to not just summarize and start to really have a conversation I think they and I are ready for more.

The truth is the structure feels “schoolified.”  I want students to feel like they can experiment and explore, discover their voice, and use their blog as a place to connect with the world.  My next steps are to find some great mentor posts for them to study and use as a way to regain some of their creativity!  If you have one please leave it in the comments below.

photo credit: Mexicanwave via photopin cc

This entry was posted in Collaboration, Inquiry, iPad, Self Reflection, Technology and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Mulling Over Blogging

  1. Linda Baie says:

    I like all the thoughts about blogging & steps & now raising the students to a higher level, Katie. I have several thoughts about your questions, but really will reflect about what happens as the students move into new territory. As I have blogged myself throughout the year, I have responded to other blogs & their comments as a way to interact with my own writing. Perhaps students need some experience writing to that kind of audience, following a path that they make while writing & listening to responses? Sorry, this is rather difficult to explain, but said another way, I wonder if the exploration of creative voice doesn’t come with background knowledge (more reading of others’ blog posts, print & online sources) along with audience response. Once an audience is there, you begin to ‘listen’ & adjust perhaps. Finally, you can see that I am intrigued with your thoughts and questions. I hope you find some ways to proceed and then write about it! Thanks!

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