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NECC Blogging Session 1

Having finally made it to the conference room, I’m reading to begin this blogging business. I don’t have wireless access at the moment, but hopefully will at the next session…this one is in the Marriott across the street from the Philadelphia Convention Center. It always take a little bit to get acclimated to a new convention center…and this one seems to be spread out.

Read, Write, and Blog: Literacy in the Information Age

Susim Munshi and Susan Switzer

All the tools are here on this site for a full-day workshop

An Exploration of Blogs in the Elementary Classroom

I see David Warlick up a couple rows from me taking pictures…I’m sure he’ll blog about this session…yep he’s typing away.

Susim and Susan work for Chicago Public Schools as technology integration specialists and have been working in 66 schools for a couple years. Literacy is their major focus, but blogs (of course) can do much more than that.

Best Practices

Are our children writing? Journaling was a waste of time because they were never read by anyone.

Personal connections

Collaborative Learning

Community Building

What are students blogging about?

  • Book Reviews
  • Character Journals
  • Literacy ReactionJournals
  • Math Problem Solving
  • Science Data Comparison…promotes collaboration with others
  • Project Based Learning…capturing the thinking process throughout the process

Connection to Standards

Obviously writing is in all content standards, especially Language Arts.

Also applies to NETS Technology communications tools standard and the theme of the conference is giving students voices

Blogging Background

Blogging gives students their own soapboxes.

Blogs are becoming the Web-presence of choice.

Top Ten Uses of the Internet in K12 Education (reverse order)

  1. Drill and Practice games
  2. Research
  3. Viewing Web cams
  4. Snatching Images
  5. WebQuests
  6. Email
  7. Locating Song Lyrics
  8. Downloading MP3’s
  9. Accessing Primary Sources
  10. Instant Messenger

Top Ten Reasons to Blog

  1. NETS for students
  2. NETS for teachers
  3. NETS for administrators
  4. 21st century learning skills
  5. Maintain emphasis on learning core subject
  6. Instant publishing
  7. Capturing thinking process
  8. Providing students with voices
  9. Mapping institutional histories
  10. Making teaching learning mreo public

Read, Write and Blog Model

Their web site has a full day workshop materials available. The activities focus on literacy and put the teachers in the role of students…so they blog through the activities. Teachers upload pictures, comment on each other postings, and obviously create their own posts.

Each activity is very curriculum based.

Weblogger.com is the tool they use to host their blog. Weblogger uses Manila.

Teacher reactions to professional development:

  • This is a great tool for teachers and students.
  • Kids have so much to say and not enough tiem in the classroom to say it.

Teacher’s prompts are becoming better and that’s what is improving the responses of students. That’s pretty important…a focus on good teaching.

What about Assessment?

  • All postings are date and time stamped
  • Frequency of communication with teacher and peers
  • Frequeny of respones
  • Evaluation of posting content process and conventions

Web site has a blog rubric…

Getting Started

  • Have a clear purpose
  • Create guidelines and policies
  • Choose the tools

Check out the web site for lots of new resources.


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