As part of an assignment (and for my own benefit, to be sure), I am going to be following, or rather, reading old posts from a blog called 23thingskansas.org. The idea of this blog is to give educators some tips and tools for Education 2.0… the next generation of educating. 🙂 I will be going through these 23 things, one at a time, about 2 per week for the next 12 weeks. You’re welcome to join me and follow along as it’s bound to be interesting, if not educational.
Read about blogging after the break!
So, blogging is something that is fairly familiar to me. I created my first “blog” when I was teaching band, back in aught-three. I had three levels of band classes: beginning, middle school, upper school (we didn’t call it “high school”). In order to keep parents apprised of the goings-on of the band program, I created separate blogs for each of the bands, and one blog to rule them all.
I used Google’s Blogger at the time, and eventually created a blog for personal use as well. I’ve never been one for bad URL names, so I quickly learned how to register a domain and point that at the blog so I could have my own unique address (www.ryanandsamantha.info). Then, it didn’t take me long to grow tired of the limitations that a hosted blog has, especially Blogger, so I moved to a self-hosted WordPress blog. Since then, I have created websites for several corporations and non-profit organizations using WordPress.
My main issue with blogs (including this one) is that I find it difficult to stay motived to create new content. I believe that most writers struggle with this, but it’s especially difficult when you get the feeling that no one is reading, because you are getting no comments.
I have read about many teachers who use blogs to great effect in the classroom, and while it sounds like an interesting idea, there are many pitfalls to doing this, in my opinion. The blogs would need to be created in a very safe and sheltered environment, to help the children learn how to prevent over-sharing, as is very common among today’s students. At the same time, you don’t want their blog to simply turn into a glorified notebook where they simply write their assignments and turn them in via a blog. Finding that happy medium in there somewhere is the greatest challenge for a teacher who is interested in using blogging in the classroom. Where is that happy medium, and how do you go about finding it? I have no idea.