Something to think about

February 22, 2005 § Leave a comment

I came across the following in my reading

For blogging to be of value, I think, it has to be born of passion. Look at the best bloggers out there, the ones you read on a regular basis. The reason I stick with them is because of their obvious passion for their topics, their sense of purpose for their spaces. … By its very nature, assigned blogging in schools cannot be blogging. It’s contrived. No matter how much we want to spout off about the wonders of audience and readership, students who are asked to blog are blogging for an audience of one, the teacher.

So this begs of the question, how do we get students to blog without forcing them to do so? Do we throw it out there as an option and let them pick up on it, and let peer pressure lead the way to blogging? If we do this, do we risk leaving students behind who do not have access to the computer at home?Substitute the word writing for the word blog in the above paragraph and we’re at the same, age-old question that teachers have always faced.

Maybe, then, we should change the focus of the blog.

Maybe blogging shouldn’t be all about reading and writing. Maybe it can be about art and music and other areas that the student is interested in. Maybe the blog becomes a portfolio of student’s work. We have been trying to get teachers to do this for years using Frontpage, Dreamweaver, and many of the other web page editors, but it just seems to be too time consuming. Is blogging the answer to cutting down on the amount of time it takes to publish a portfolio? If it is, then where do we come up with server space for things like student produced videos? Large scanned pictures?

It all just seems to create more questions…any suggestions?

Very Cool

February 21, 2005 § Leave a comment

I’m very enthusiastic about how many people in the department are ‘into’ blogs. At first, I thought I’d be the only one. I’m excited to see so much interest. I really think that this could be the beginning of a huge change in education. I also think it’s up to us, as technologists, to allow people to flow with this and not get too caught up in the red tape and regulation that usually surrounds good ideas. Many a good idea has been ruined because of too much control being placed on what people can do with it. Instead of placing rules and regulations, let’s just remind teachers of the policies already in place, and make sure they’re using common sense when using this new tool. The rules will write themselves. We can’t be afraid of what teachers and kids might do with this tool, or we may end up stifling creativity and innovation in using it.

Welcome

February 14, 2005 § Leave a comment

This blog is going to be used to track the progress in getting middle school teachers in North East ISD (San Antonio, TX) to use blogs as an authentic writing tool. This will serve as the backbone of my research into whether it is feasable for a district of this size to adopt blogging as a genuine teaching, learning, and collaborating tool.

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