Blogging in the Classroom With 21st Century Learners

This is my first attempt at a VoiceThread. I’m not sure if it will work correctly. I compiled articles, videos, and images to share the research I found on classroom blogs and how they affect students. I welcome you to view my VoiceThread and learn about blogging for educational purposes with me.


Script for VideoThread:
Slide 1: I am going to share with you some research I found through articles, videos, and web sites on the benefits and disadvantages of blogging in a classroom.
Slide 2-6: Collaborative Blogging Artcle:
The first article I read shows the results of a study done by 3rd grade pre-service teachers and students. Writing feedback and research assistance was given to students through the means of a blog. Researchers believe that student blogging can: promote critical and analytical thinking, be a powerful promoter of creative, intuitive, and associational thinking, promote analogical thinking, be a powerful medium for increasing access and exposure to quality information, and combine the best of solitary reflection and social interaction.
This article explains that commenting and hyper-linking, two components of blogging, give others tools to communicate feedback to writers.
Through the study, the students used Kidzblog at home and in the classroom to report on a Native American Tribe. Pre-service teachers provided students with age-appropriate links to research about their tribe. After organizing their research using Inspiration concept map, the students were then instructed to create a five paragraph essay using MediaBlend. Wow. That’s a lot of web tools!
Throughout this process, the pre-service teachers commented on student blogs, which served as rough drafts for the assignment.
This survey was used to assess whether attitude change is taking place over the course of the project.
Here are the findings from the survey taken before and after the project. Student responses were much more positive after the project.
So what does this all mean? … Here is a summary of the intended and unintended results.
Now.. was technology or the collaboration process the motivator??
After reading about this study, I have concluded that the collaboration process was much more the motivator for the students than the actual technology of blogging itself. However, I do find that because all of these students had computers at home and were familiar with blogging, using this tool was engaging and exciting for them because they are 21st century learners.
Slide 7: The Prose of Blogging Article:
In this article, the author uses the last article I showed you to make a conclusion about the effectiveness of blogging in classroom. He states that the study showed an increased interest in student writing after the project with blogging.
The author also points out that using blogging in the classroom promotes writing outside of the classroom. Once our students know how to use this tool, they are more likely to use it inside and outside of the classroom. He states here that students were commenting on the blogs before, during and even after school sometimes.
The last example of blogging benefits from this author I want to point out is that blogging gives our students an audience other than just the teacher. Writing is now seen by everyone following their blog, which encourages them to write better.
One disadvantage to blogging that this author points out is the possibility of spam taking over the blog. In the case this author shared, the blog site had to be shut down.
I did some more research to find a solution for this problem. I found which gives users plug-ins to download and use to block the spam getting into their blog accounts.

Slide 8:
I will now show you some clips from a video of how blogging affects students first hand.
At 2:50 – This makes a great point about reading and writing across many different platforms, which blogging promotes!
At 3:27 – With other students and teachers as the audience, students writing blogs are held to high standards. They have higher standards for themselves and for other student’s blogs they are reading.
At 4:47 – Blogging helps improve students typing skills and vocabulary. When they read others comments, they have to comprehend what others students are writing, which sometimes means different words that they may not know.
Stop video – continue at 7:30 –
At 8:40 stop video –
In conclusion, these students who have experienced blogging have not only improved their literacy skills but have also learned a whole lot about digital citizenship and have even made global connections.
Slide 9:
CNN Video:
This CNN news report shows international students using blogging to learn the English language. The video explains how blogging helps students focus on their writing and hold their writing to higher standards because their writing is on display for the whole world to see.

Another disadvantage or challenge I thought of when researching student blogging was how to teach young students about internet safety and digital citizenship. My solution: BrainPop!
There is a cost to join the full version of the site, but it has a lot of great free resources, too, that are kid friendly to show students how to communicate online safely and with proper etiquette.
Slide 10: From this site you can teach an introduction lesson on blogs with a short cartoon video (show video)
Slide 12: You can also show a short cartoon video on digital citizenship on their “Free Stuff” page. (show video)
There is a cost to join the full version of the site, but it has a lot of great resources that are kid friendly to show students how to communicate online safely and with proper etiquette.
Slide 13:

Blogging in the classroom relates to the skills indicators, dispositions, and responsibilities mentioned in Standard 3 in the AASL Learning Standards.
The Standard 1 and Standard 4 Self-Assessment indicators in the standards are met through blogging in a classroom.


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