Welcome! This blog will be used by students at Temple University, who are taking ED 2255, Effective Use of Instructional Technology in Classrooms.
This is one area that I have experimented with in my class. Some of the advantages are the ability of my students to express their thoughts without fear of peer humiliation. My students tend to be more honest in their blogs then they are in class.One of the disadvantages is the student's ability to be too open. Students sometimes tend to place things that are not directly related to the topic of discussion. In an actual class you can head off a wrong path. In a blog what is posted is there for all who have access.Posted by: Mark S. Cottom
I agree with Mark that blogs can be used in a positive way it that students will feel more comfortable sharing their ideas without the potential humiliation of their peers. One of the main disadvantages of a blog is the exclusion of students being able to participate for lack of a computer or internet connection at home. In this case these students will feel left out and not part of the class.
I failed to post my name to my comments sorry.Posted by Mike Pac
I haven't tried incorporating student blogging into my course. After giving it some thought, I realize that it could be a very valuable communication tool. A blog could be used to introduce students to various artists' and designers' work and provide an opportunity for discussion and critiques. This would give students who are otherwise shy to speak in front of the group a chance to voice their opinions. In addition, it could be used as a virtual inspiration board -- a place to share interesting, unique, ideas and examples of key principles being taught. As the previous two posts mention, the obvious hurdle is the fact that not all students have access to an internet connection at home. Perhaps an alternative to this would be allotting time once a week for students to respond/comment on a class blog each week. The instructor could post 3 or 4 threads and allow students the chance to choose the topic that interests them most.Posted by: Michele Klock
One way a blog might be used is like an online journal where students reflect and share what they learned from the class, what they found interesting in a lesson, and how class material connects to their individual lives and experiences. I think blogs are a great way to promote students to critically think about class concepts and extend their knowledge by voicing their ideas and opinions. Furthermore, students can learn from each other as they read each other’s posts and reply with their own ideas; when students see things from multiple perspectives they not only develop a better understanding of ideas but develop the capacity to accept and appreciate others views. One point of caution with the student’s replying to one another’s posts is that conflicting ideas could lead to heated and aggressive debates or put downs, especially if the topic in question is controversial. Although students should be instructed not to use fowl language and respect all ideas, it is almost certain something inappropriate will be said in the blog.
I haven't tried incorporating student blogging into my course. After giving it some thought, I realize that it could be a very valuable communication tool. A blog could be used to introduce students to various artists' and designers' work and provide an opportunity for discussion and critiques. This would give students who are otherwise shy to speak in front of the group a chance to voice their opinions. In addition, it could be used as a virtual inspiration board -- a place to share interesting, unique, ideas and examples of key principles being taught.As the previous two posts mention, the obvious hurdle is the fact that not all students have access to an internet connection at home. Perhaps an alternative to this would be allotting time once a week for students to respond/comment on a class blog each week. The instructor could post 3 or 4 threads and allow students the chance to choose the topic that interests them most.Posted by: Michele Klock
The first idea that comes to mind for me is a way to present issues that are found in the field of carpentry, and allow the students to discuss the possible solutions. Another may be to have students comment on a lesson, or activity, and discuss some of the places that they struggle or ways that they found to be successful. I do not like the idea of anonymity in this area. I am very diligent in holding my students accountable for their actions and their words. For me a blog would have to have that accountability. I believe that students must be able to say “I had a hard time with…..”. Some of the advantages would be that the students would have that technological forum for discussion. Through this greater class unity may be built. It is also another way for me to reach my students, and possibly their parents. The largest negative that I can think of is the student who does not have internet access or a computer. While I know that this is becoming rare, it does still exist. I had a student recently whose family had neither a computer nor internet access. I also find that if something is not required of a student they are less likely to do it. This is something that I am willing to consider in my class next school year.
My co-instructor and I both developed blogs this past year only to discover they were blocked through the high school's filtering software. Since we are a career and tech center, our administrator is working on our ability to use technology. Our goal is to be able to communicate with our students "their" way--but in a forum that we can moderate (to keep those potential heated discussions or inappropriate remarks from being made public). We would like to have links to websites that we feel may be interesting or help explain a point or show a visual (youtube) and allow them to explore on their own time and share their thoughts with us. One of our past students created a group on facebook that we all keep in contact with each other--nice for the alumni to check in once in awhile, too. Momma D (Darlene Drake)
When I think of using blogs in my classroom I think of the tool definitely as another form of communication that can enhance the teacher-student relationship and the student-student relationship. I would use blogs in my classroom in the form of a online journal or online debate/discussion resource for students to access in class, at home, and really get into as oppose to written work or in-person group talks all the time. The advantage from using a blog in the form of an online journal or discussion board is likely the increase in participation because it involves using a computer, tablet, or smartphone. I also think because students are typing they are more likely to be more self-expressive and get into detail while in deep thought. The disadvantage to giving this kind of luxury to students is the possibility that they will abuse it. Some students might use this blog like they would Facebook, and verbally attack others or their peers work; that would be my main concern. Bianca Bradwell
A blog could be used to enhance students' creativity with thoughts and ideas. It could also help students express their opinions and compare their views with other students in the class. Blogs can increase student participation and enable constant communication about the content or related matter within a course. Another use for a blog would be for informal communication and also for students to post content they see as relevant for the class such as news articles, videos, music, and other supplemental content. A possible disadvantage to using a blog would be that some students may not have access to the internet outside of school and also inappropriate material can be posted if the instructor chooses not to monitor each post. - Dar Sheth
A positive to blogging is how closely it relates to journal writing. Each day my student's write a journal entry to build writing skills. This helps to bridge the gap of time, while waiting for the different sending schools to arrive, and allows for a smooth transition into the days activities. It would also eliminate the "I don't have a pencil" sound that rings out each day. As well as allow for a clearer review of the writings. We have been doing journal writing for 2 marking periods now and I believe if we had to resources in the classroom to go electronic and blog, the student's would write even more. The disadvantage I see to blogging is the always present temptation to slip away from the intended site and look at pictures, read email, or play games. We have a number of sites blocked in our organization, but teenagers are always finding alternative sites, and they know their way around the internet. This keeps me on my toes when a bank of laptops are being used in my classroom.
I would use the blogg for daily writing assignments. I think todays student will find blogging within there confort zone. I must admit that I am probably the weekest link here. However once I have done it a few times and develope a confort with blogging I can see were this can be a great tool to get students to express ideas that may come to them after the class is done or just was not ready to share their thoughts at the time.I agree with Pual miller that it promotes creativity and provides a less threatning environment for those students who are shy and introvert.
I feel that a blog can be very helpful in the classroom because it gives a student more time to reflect on what they want to say and for those students who have a hard time sharing thier feeling and speaking in front of other students it can be less threatening. I agree with Dar Sheth in that blogging can promote creativity. In my class, my students do a daily journal that is hand written so i am interested in incorporating this blogging concept.The downside of blogging is that alot of my students do not have internet access or computers at home to use and the possibility that some people could be disrespectful.
A blog can be very beneficial in the classroom. Students can use these to express themselves creatively. Blogging is like a more updated and electronic version of journal writing. Students would be more engaged in expressing their thoughts on a blog as opposed to writing it in a journal book. They can use their blog to reflect on what they've learned that day, or that week, or even that curriculum theme. One disadvantage of blogging, as a lot of you also mentioned, is that blogging creates a window for students to lead a discussion that is not related to the current education content.
I think blogs can be very helpful as an alternate way for students to express what they have learned. It is not always evident from tests or quizzes whether or not students have truly grasped a concept. If they are able to blog about their learning experience it might provide a more accurate view. Students could also share their blogs with others outside the classroom such as their parents. It could be a good way to help parents stay involved in their child's education. The down side of blogging could be that students might use in an inappropriate way. There would have to be someone to moderate the content of the blog which is time consuming. Kelley O'Neill
I did not try to set up any blogs with my students. For one thing it is brand new for me and it would be impossible for me to get enough computers in the classroom. The advantage of the blog is that the students would constantly update the information they learned or experienced in the classroom. I could do away with time sheets and have students record their daily activities along with some study notes. The disadvantage is I would have to police students on the computer and we would waste valuable time in the shop area. I guess I am old fashioned and have that mind set "if it isn't broke don't fix it".
I think it could be helpful for students to find extra resources or ask questions on homework. It possibly would not work because the students probably wouldn't use it.