After a successful introduction to blogging for year 4 (see blog post: here) we have decided to extend blogging throughout the school. This will be the first major ICT initiative recently and will be a challenge for some members of the staff but I think it is important to ensure equal opportunity to children across the school.
At the moment how I envisage it working is that each year group will have their own blog. Each class will then have their own school email address and account which will allow posts to be identified by class. I will not be giving each child individual log ins as I found that these on top of their school network and email address passwords were becoming too much for the children to remember. A staff member from each year group will then be responsible for monitoring the comments for their year group as well as trying to ensuring weekly posts are made on their year group’s blog.
I am introducing blogging in a staff INSET this July ready to introduce it from September as I wanted to suggest people used the ‘Paper Blogging’ activity (see blog post: here) as a transition day or first week of school activity. I have made these notes explaining how I want to introduce it to staff:
- What is a blog? What is blogging?
- The unread story is not a story; it is little black marks on wood pulp. The reader, reading it, makes it live: a live thing, a story.
- Blogging can give children power
- NeverSeconds – 9year old girl who started blogging about her school dinners in April
- By may 9th she’d had 42,000 hits and was hoping one of them was Jamie Oliver
- The next day it’d gone viral and was up to 105,000 people with Jamie Oliver tweeting her dad
- 14th May she started asking people from around the world to share their dinners
- On the 18th May she mentioned a charity Mary’s Meals that she’d been raising money for at school as part of a club
- 23 may 1 million hits
- To date there have been 7000 people donate to Mary’s Meals through the blog raising a total of £110,000
- She averages about 70 comments a day from around the world.
- A year of blogging
- What the kids say – ‘I like being able to share ideas with parents’ ‘I like comments for others to see around the world’ ‘I like to comment on other’s work because I can say what I think’
- What other teachers have said – raising standards. Communication. Improving virtural presents. Increasing children ICT awareness, Fantastically motivating to see where the next comment will come from especially for boys. Children enthused and they don’t see it as practising their writing; it is fun! Great to have other people see their work.
- What I have found – children are showing parents at home, contributing at home and bringing in extra work to add to it
- From September we’ll be whole school blogging
- Letter will go out to parents
- One person in each year group responsible for maintaining
- Every class expected to contribute at least one post per week
- Paired classes to ensure comments
- No one wants more work
- Use it in guided reading as a reading exercise – 10 mins whole class and then one pair
- Registration – reading and commenting
- Literacy looking at writing on someone in our school’s or another school’s – how have they use punctuation
- Writing blogs can be planned in as part of starters/plenaries and as extension work
- You always have a computer in your classroom – often it’s used for teacher input and then left whilst you’re working with groups
- It’s a great filler activity for those changes or in-between times
- Lesson introduction – paper blogging
I hope that this will be a positive enough introduction to encourage everyone to have a go. I will use the year 4 blog as an example to show a live working blog and discussed through the features and widgets. I will then follow this up on the first INSET back in September to demonstrate posting and showing the staff in charge of monitoring for each year group how to moderate the comments.
You can check out the school blogs here:
Related blog posts:
Paper Blogging – How to introduce blogging to students
Inspiring a generation of bloggers – Neverseconds
Class Blog 2.0 – the next generation
When a curriculum is full to busting, when do you find the time?
Class Blogging – The Future?