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Blogs

Page history last edited by Heidi Blair 10 years, 11 months ago

Adapted from a previous Mini-Teach Presentations

(a portion of the material here originated on the following website:https://wiki.asu.edu/innovationsf06tth1100/index.php/Blogs )

Contributors: Erika Haehl, Barbara Styles, Isabel Kirker, Brenna Good, and Kendall Ray 

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What Is a Blog?

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Weblogs (blogs)- They are online journals where people, otherwise known as bloggers, can record anything from their views on the war to what they did during a particular day. The blogger can add pictures and multimedia to their journal. Whoever reads a blog may be able to make comments on it, depending on the bloggers' chosen settings. This will open up a discussion between the blogger and the reader. Some examples are blogger.com, blogs4me.com, and MyBlog.com are a few of the free blogs available. There are many others available, although there are more extensive blogs available that ask for payment.

 

Photo Blogs: A photo blog is a blog in which the blogger will post their pictures instead of text. The blogger may include captions or maybe even an explanation of their photos. Others are usually allowed to enter comments here as well as create a rapport between blogger and reader. Some of the available photo blogs are fotolog.com and flickr.com.

 

Video Blogs (vlogs): These are very similar to the photo blogs, but insted they allow the user to enter videos they captured, edited, or even created. There are also vlogs created by groups that have a collaberated effort involved. Some host of vlogs are dropshots.com, vobbo.com, and the more popular, youtube.com.

 

Other Types: There is a type of blog called an artlog, which has its focus on art (artlogs.org). Another type are sketch blogs, which are mainly ideas and thoughts created in different forms. There are also music blogs, called MP3 blogs, which make music in MP3 format and then are available for download (elbo.ws). Another type of blogs are audio, which are also called podcasts. This is where people put media files on the web, making it available for others to download and listen to (ehow.com).

 

 

A History of Blogs:

 

Years ago, when the internet had a limited number of websites, a man named Tim Berners-Lee created the first “blog”, which was, at the time, called a “What’s new page”. This event occurred in 1992, allowing other internet surfers to discover which new sites were popping up. Another page with links to new internet websites was created a little later by Marc Andreesen. The term “weblog” did not come in to play until 1998 by Jorn Barger. (He had separated the words into "we blog," which in term, birthed the infamous term "Blog.")

 

In 1999 two websites were created as an easy way for everyday users to create their own blogs, “Blogger” and “Pitas”. These websites enabled people who had no previous knowledge of html to create a blog of their own. Since then, millions of blogs have been created, as well as many new website hosts. Among the most popular websites for blogging are: LiveJournal,TypePad, Blogger, and the now famous MySpace.

 

 

 

 

How do I create my own Blog?

  • Register for an account
  • Customize the appearance
  • Start blogging

 

Educational Uses of Blogging

 

Teacher to Teacher:

 

Blogging can be a useful tool in your educational program and for the rest of your career as a teacher. Imagine the networking possibilites! Through blogging teachers can communicate more easily with other teachers from all over the world. No two teacher to teacher blogs are the same. Each have their own unique focus or style. Some teachers use it to reflect on their professional practice. Others use it to share new ideas, or to ask for feedback from other professionals. Professional education bloggers use blogging to keep teachers up to date on the new and emerging ways to incorporate technology into the classroom.

 

Examples of Teacher to Teacher blog sites:

EdBlogger - http://www.educational.blogs.com/

Hip Teacher - http://hipteacher.typepad.com/

TeacherSource - http://www.pbs.org/teachers/learning.now/

Educational Tech Blog - http://timlauer.org/

 

 

Student to Teacher:

 

Students can create blogs that are similar to journals. These can only be accessed by the indivdual student or the teacher. Each student in the class gets their own blog space. This is a great way to minimize paper use as well as integrate technology into something as simple as a student's weekly reflection. These journal blogs also allow students to post questions that the student may be afraid to ask in front of his or her peers or to the teacher's face. This type of blog is called the learner blog.

 

Other blog programs similar to Blackboard or blogger.com allow teachers to post homework assignments, announcements and discussion boards. There are two main types. The "tutor" blog is a site where only the teacher can post. A "class" blog is one where both students and teachers can post. Both of these allow students to have access to materials outside of the classroom. This is also important because now parents can check and see what their children have for homework as well.

 

Examples of Classroom Blogs:

A Fourth Grade Classroom Blog - http://team207.21classes.com/

Elementary Classroom Audioblog - http://blogs.oaisd.org/235

 

Teacher Resources:

Blogs on Educational Blogging- http://supportblogging.com/Links+to+School+Bloggers

 

Teacher to Parents

Blogs can be used as a communication tool. It allows you to reach out to parents and guardians who are technologically savvy. One must remember that is may not be a large percentage. Putting a great deal of time into this method of communicating may or may not be a good return on your investment.

 

Another caution would be the tendency of revealing too much personal information within a series of blog postings. Remember to keep the content and tone professional at ALL times.

What are some factors to keep in mind?

 

Student Safety:

Keeping your students safe while blogging on the internet is very important.

 

Before setting up a blog for your classroom be sure to check with your district to determine their guidlines for publishing student content on the internet. Be careful that any photos published do not identify students by name, and that last names are never used.

 

Second, use a blogging resource that allows you as the teacher to edit content before it is posted for public viewing. This way you can ensure that students are not publishing identifiable details about themselves.

 

 

The Positive Side of Blogging in an Educational Environment:

  1. When teachers use blogging to pose reflective questions to students on subjects learned in the classroom, it gives students an opportunity to make important connections that facilitate the learning process.
  2. It provides a relevant opportunity for students to practice critical thinking, and formulating opinions.
  3. Blogs offer a supportive environment outside of the classroom where teachers can extend assistance and guidance to learners as needed.
  4. Blogging encourages students to see themselves as writers as well as a forum to practice the skill with regularity.
  5. Connecting classroom blogs school-wide allows students in the school community to comment on each others blogs (Turnbull, 2004).
  6. Blogging with students opens up a unique and new opportunity for teacher observation and assessment of student learning.

 

 

References:

 

 

Huffaker, David A. (2005). Let Them Blog: Using Weblogs to Advance Literacy in the K-12 Classroom. Retrieved February 3rd, 2008 from http://www.soc.northwestern.edu/ Website:http://www.soc.northwestern.edu/gradstudents/huffaker/papers/Huffaker2005_LetThemBlog.pdf

 

 

 

 

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