This blog details the learning journey to complete the Edublogs Teacher Challenge 2011. It is a conversation about being a beginner blogger so it may prove to be a little too self-deprecating at times for some readers!

This blog is about blogging - setting up a brand new blog, making decisions about design and appearance, and learning how to use the Blogger interface as well as the slightly different Edublogs interface. So it will also discuss the decisions made for the design and operation of my professional blog which is Applied Chaos Theory (hosted at Edublogs).

I hope that by journalling about my learning journey in the world of teacher blogging it may provide some small encouragement to other teacher bloggers as they begin their own learning journey in this new collaborative/connected world!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Activity #2 Effective and Engaging Blog Posts

The outline for this activity gives some really good advice about how to engage your audience and come up with effective posts for your blog. Activity 2

Wandering around other teacher blogs has cost quite a bit of time - time I probably should have been spending on my own blog. However, reading the first attempts of beginners as well as the offerings of really experienced bloggers - there is so much to learn about writing high quality posts. On Yammer this morning there was a link to a post of a primary teacher (US so probably more appropriately called elementary teacher) as he evaluated an interaction between himself and a student over use of a pencil. I really enjoyed reading his post and the picture he created with his words. There is much for a Mathematics teacher to learn about engaging your audience using authentic experiences and your evaluation of them.

Interestingly, over the past couple of weeks (since finishing up at Ramsgate Public) I have had a number of emails from kids at Ramsgate who have asked for various bits of information regarding their web travels. One in particular, a young girl starting high school in 2011, has sort my advice about her desire to complete her first novel by age 13 (she turns 12 in Feb 2011 so she has set a realistic goal!).
Why she would ask *me* is a question to set aside... but my advice has been simple. To write well you need to practice. To write a book you need planning. So I have suggested to her that she set up a blog (first step - ask parents for permission) and use it to engage with her audience and practise her writing. She has subsequently sent me some poems to read and respond to... she is one to watch! It is wonderful to be able to open her eyes to the possibilities of how a blog can give her a medium by which she can publish. This generation of students certainly has opportunities that have not been previously available.

Thinking about this brings to mind a blog I found on my web travels last year. I was looking for a student blog to show Year 5 and came across livtodance. Her teacher was being showcased on edublogs and there was a link to Olivia's blog as well. So I visited and had a wander around and was startled by the passion and clarity of her vision for her life and her blog. She was in Year 8 in 2010 and yet her writing was as polished and fluid as her passion for dance. I asked her, through a comment, for permission to show her blog to Year 5 and she was gracious in her response. Visiting her blog is always time well spent.

So writing posts can look like lots of things - I've seen short, pithy, opinionated offerings as well as long, deliberated, thoughtful musings... and everything in between. When I visit blogs it is interesting to see how long I stay. There are lots of factors involved but the quality of the writing is close to the top of the list - probably along side of how easy is it to navigate this blog.

No comments:

Post a Comment