The title’s a bit of a misnomer. There’s really only one learner in the group who you might call a ‘kid’.
This is a new step for me. I’ve tried blogging with groups of students before, but never really got far with it. I wrote a post and (with a fair bit of cajolling) my students left a comment. To be honest, perhaps the tasks weren’t great (‘leave a comment about your holiday plans’ and the like) and with hindsight I didn’t really expect too much from it. Heck, I had a little trouble getting my head around the logistics of it (blog, post, comment, what?) so little wonder my students didn’t engage fully. This was compounded by the helpful IT network system we have where I teach, a useful thing that blocks anything to do with social media! (Very useful if you planned a whole session around a blog post).
But that was back in the day…
This is a new start.
So, I’ve set up a(nother) blog, this time for my students. I’ve gone for WordPress to do this – it seems a little less distracting than what I have here. Simplicity is what I’m after, after all I don’t want to confuse my students. Here’s the link ESOL IT and a screen capture of the first post, an introduction to blogging:
I’ve posted three videos here: one I made to introduce our blog and explain how to leave a comment; a Common Craft ‘Blogs in plain English’; and another entitled ‘What is a blog?’ that I chose mainly because the voiceover is relatively clear.
I’ll post later to share how my students are getting on.
As for making my own video, I’m pretty proud of this I used Jing - a neat tool for screencasting, in other words recording what’s on your computer screen. (Thanks to @dfogarty via his Tao Te(a)Ching blog) and have found it a very intuitive piece of software. (I figure if I can get my head round it in less than a day it must be good!). Kudos I must also send the way of Russell Stannard and his Teacher Training Videos (here is a link to his video on Jing).
So this time I am quietly optimistic of a more engaged response from my students, and am definitely better prepared to help them on their way into the wonderful, confusing (but now not too boring, I hope) world of ICT and social media.
I’ll let you know how it goes.This post is now part of a series ‘Blogging with the kids’. Follow it on my Series page.