caffeinatedteaching

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Blogging in the Primary Classroom March 26, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — caffeinatedteaching @ 12:56 PM

I admit – I was skeptical at first.

I was told to try implementing as much technology as possible into my classroom this year.

Now remember, I said skeptical, not opposed. 🙂

I teach first grade and have 5 computers in my classroom. Where do I begin? I had been using technology, but this required me bringing in my own equipment and resources.

My goal was to find Internet based technology resources that could also be used by my students on their own time, outside of school.

And I do have to say, I believe I have succeeded on that level.

One resource I want to share is blogging. I have been able to blog with my first graders within our classroom as well as outside of our classroom. I have also been able to incorporate reading, writing, word study, math, science and social studies into our blog while teaching digital citizenship along the way.

I currently use KIDBLOG.

This site allows me to choose if our blog will be public or private. Mine is currently private. So, you need a log-in name and password to sign in.  I also find it very user friendly when setting up your class and creating posts.

When I started the blog at the beginning of this school year, it was more of a discussion thread. I would post and the students would reply to my post. As they became comfortable and familiar with the format of the blog, I opened it up and allowed them to have their own “blog” post. Oh my! They handled this like pros! I still direct what they are blogging, but they are creating their own posts on the topic and then responding to each other, which is helping them understand how to reply to their peers in constructive and positive ways.

Some ideas I have used for all academic subjects are:

  • For math, my students have written their own word problems and then solved the problems their peers posted. I included on the blog a link to online math “emanipulatives” they could use to help them solve the problems. The link I used was EDUPLACE by Houghton Mifflin.
  • For writing I posted pictures and had them write details about the picture.  Then, we used their details to write a full class story about the picture.  This was very fun!
  • For reading, we posted reviews about our favorite books and why others may like the book as well.
  • For word study I posted videos from MR. THORNE.(Which by the way, I love this site!) The students would watch a video on blends, then create a list of words starting with the blends in the video and then use their list to write sentences using those words.  Their creativity was amazing!
  • For social studies we blogged about cultures we learned about in class and which our favorite was and why.
  • For science I posted videos from YOUTUBE about the topic we were learning such as recycling. Then the students would blog about what they recycled, reduced or reused in their homes. I have never had such a great list of ways to help our environment!

And the list could go on…

Blogging has allowed our learning to grow from within the walls of our classroom to our homes while teaching positive digital citizenship.

I recently submitted a proposal to teach other teachers about blogging in the primary classroom.  I would love your suggestions!  Do you blog?  What site do you use?  What do you blog about?

Thanks in advance for your support and ideas! 🙂

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4 Responses to “Blogging in the Primary Classroom”

  1. Ian Chia Says:

    Hi, I came across this post via one of PLN. I thought you might be interested in a thread I’ve been compiling of literacy practices and research across the world for children & youth – blogging being one of them. There are a number of examples of how classrooms are using blogging to great success along with research that talks about why immersion in literacy using technology works.

    http://storify.com/ianchia/literacy-20-examples

    The blogging section follows the section on using Twitter in the classroom, you’ll just need to keep pressing “Load more” at the bottom to reach it. It’s a longish thread.

    Hope this helps!

    Best,

    – Ian

  2. I will definitely check it out. Thank you!

  3. Sway Says:

    I am interested in using blogging with my own class of year 4 childrden (8-9 year olds) however I am curious as to when your children have the opportunity to access the blog? Is there a set time during the school day? Or is it whenever they want to?

    Unfortunately we don’t have any classroom computers other than my own so the practicalities are holding me back at the moment…

    • When we post during class, it’s during our literacy time and I just rotate them through. But typically it’s one blog post a week and it’s homework, so they blog from home and we share the posts in class as a mini lesson on that topic.


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