Blogging: Learning Blogs - The Approach
Sometimes elements of blogs or entire blogs are devoted to a particular process or product.
Collaboration. Some blogs are used as an environment for cooperation, interaction, and working together toward a joint goal. The students may share the same classroom or work with partners in other places in the world.
- Example (Elementary): Hidden Histories - The Chinese American Experience (2 elementary classrooms 300 miles apart)
Creative Works. Any type of written work can be the focal point for a blog such as poetry, short stories, or television scripts. However, blogs can also be used to share other creative works such as artwork, musical scores, and video productions.
Critique. Ask students to write reviews for websites, books, movies, games, local sights, or other topics.
- Book award discussions and ratings
- What are the qualities of a good book?
- How will you decide which are best?
- Example (Elementary): Math Practice
- Example (Elementary): Mr. Twigg's Book Talk
Discussion. Some blogs focus on interaction, reaction, and discussion of a wide range of topics. While forum software is sometimes used for these, blogs can also be effective. Use the blog format for literature-rich discussions related to award nominated books, literature circles, or community book club connections.
- Example (High School): AlaskaBlog - Community-based book discussion (Of Mice and Men)
- Example (High School): East Side Bloggers 2005 - Book discussion of 12th graders
- Example (High School): The Secret Life of Bees
Experiences. Some blogs focus on a particular shared experience such as an annual event, field trip, or school-wide activity. The blog is used to record the experience. It might also involve connecting with students in other locations for a virtual experience.
Experiments. Use a blog to track an experiment or post observations.
- Trace the steps in the experiment
- Post observations from experiments
- Chronicle a science fair project
- Example (Elementary): Meal Worm Observations
- Example: (Elementary): Pheasant Eggs
Expressions of Passion. Motivation is critical to learning. Sometimes a topical blog can generate passion in students who otherwise find school boring and meaningless.
- Example (Elementary): Soo's Fashion Designs
- Example (Middle School): Gamer 101
- Example (Middle School): Skateboarding
Inquiry. Use the blog as a tool for questioning, exploration, and investigation. Individually or in groups, students chronicle the inquiry process and use the blog to share their experiences, reflections, and challenges. The blog is also used to interact and share ideas, provide feedback, and critique ideas.
Journaling. Keep a journal, log, or diary. Work individually or as a class to compose journal entries or assign groups or individual students.
- Place for learner reflection
- Place to share assignments
- Place to support questioning and inquiry
- Ideas for personal blogs: Blogbuilder
- Example (High School): Alex Dodge
News Reporting. Share local or global current events as a class or individually. The student or teacher posts current events articles and invites reactions, thoughts, alternative perspectives, or solutions.
- Example (Elementary): Emily's Newspaper
- Example (Elementary): Mustang Times
- Example (Elementary): NewsQuest
Project Log (plog). Used to chronicle a project.
Portfolio. Some blogs are used for maintaining a portfolio of student work.
Report Writing. Use the blog format to post reports. Students can add web links to web pages, music, or videos. Some blogs also allow photographs. Categories might include key topics or it may be presented chronologically.
- Example (Middle): Muhammad Ali
- Example (Middle): Frederic Chopin
- Example (Middle): Project Rain Forest
- Example (Middle): Romans
- Example (Middle): Poribesh Bachan - Environmental Awareness in Bangladesh
Timeline Projects. Trace a timeline; create a parallel timeline. Use Wikipedia Timelines for ideas.
Vocabulary Blog. Post a word and definition. Ask students to create sentences or discuss use of the word in context.
Explore three or four blogs. What activities and approaches are used?
Elementary Student Blogs links