So...Why do you write a blog?
Why do I blog?
(As a side note, can you really call yourself a "blogger" if your average posting rate is about one every two months? Not sure, but I'm hoping YES :-)
So why do I blog?
Do I really want people to read what I write? Most definitely, but not for narcissistic reasons. For with increased readership and recognition comes responsibility for more posts, and with more posts comes more time needed for blogging. Frankly, I am having trouble making use of the time I've got now.
The reason I bring this up, is that I'm struggling with how to frame my student's blog work for this coming school year. In the past, each student has had a blog and they were in charge of writing articles that correlated to assignments and occasionally write a post about something of self interest. It was really just a form of blogging direction instruction? So how do we blog then?
After reading "The Element" by Ken Robinson, I recognize the importance of letting students write about their passion. I hear folks like Will Richardson talk about allowing kids to be surrounded with other folks who are passionate about the similar things and forming networks. So how can I encourage my students to write about those things that they are passionate about while still providing a format for classroom reflection? This is my struggle!
Our students use Classblogmeister as our blogging engine and the kids don't seem to get many comments on their writing (With the exception of Lisa Durff's class in Maryland!). It is the comments that I know encourage kids to keep writing, after all, it's nice to know you are writing FOR someone else and not just the teacher.
What are your thoughts???
I think maybe we will have students keep a blog of personal interest this year and just have them write about things they know and love. It's nicer to read something when it is engaging and written because someone wanted to, not because they had to. That's not to say that there won't be the occasional blogging "assignment," but at least it won't be the blogs ultimate purpose.
Also, my thinking is that student comments will be more worthwhile and of higher quality because they are commenting about things of interest to them as well.
Does this mean that I'm going to change my blog because I don't get any affirming comments? :-) Nope, like I said before, I write to process....but it IS nice to receive a comment every now and again.
That just means I've got to start reading and commenting more on other people's stuff. After all, community is an "All Way" street, not just one way!
(image: "blog" by inju)