My Journey with Student Blogging

I started blogging with one of my drama classes this week. It’s going really well.

This week I set up the class blog along with each student setting up their own individual blog.

I know a lot of the information out there suggests that you start with the class blog as a base and get the kids to comment but I couldn’t wait! I’ve been wanting to blog for so long I just wanted to dive right in!

This could backfire on me terribly but I don’t think so. The class are very good and very keen to listen and learn.

I was torn between using a web based platform or the platform provided by the NSWDET called BlogED. Whilst numerous people out there offered me excellent support and advice it was more of a hindrance and hassle to get it working as opposed to the ease of going onto the Internet and working with the platforms available on there. That is my only gripe with BlogED. I’ve gone with Edublogs only because WordPress is blocked by my school’s filters.

Now here, I’ll be quick, is my tiny, tiny, tiny, rant: I think one of the biggest stumbling blocks with technology use in our schools is that it is such a rigmarole to get it working. All the blocks and filters, permission for access etc. I understand certain areas need to be filtered but some valuable things are being lost and some inappropriate content still getting through. You’ve not even started working with the program and you’re already frustrated. Valuable ideas are thrown out the window because the practicalities of working within the program fail to allow you to do anything. The DER laptops are another example of this. I can’t download the latest Flash Player because the laptop has not been authorised to do so. If there was a little more ease of access in getting started and using programs then perhaps those in our schools who are already reluctant to use technology, may be less so when they see that it isn’t so difficult to get it working. I always find we shoot ourselves in the foot when we try to demonstrate something and then the computer freezes or the projector doesn’t work. Those reluctant types go right back into their little safety, smug bubbles.

Anyway, my rant is over with. Here is our class blog with links to each student blog. It is very basic and hasn’t had a lot added to it just yet but it will be great once we get it going. I am literally working at the same pace as the kids so we have only created our accounts and chosen a theme. The only thing I have added is a blogroll and blog guidelines which I will discuss in a future post.