Sunday, January 20, 2008

Eureka!

You know how you can read something, but it doesn't really sink in sometimes? Brain of the Blogger mentioned how blogs foster critical thinking, but I didn't really believe it, I guess.



Then suddenly, finally, it dawned on me: the power of blogging in the classroom is similar to the power of journal writing when done well. Reflective thinking.



Blogs are written in an informal style, because that is how we think. Blogs are updated when we have new ideas, when there are thoughts to share, when we have come across a new way of thinking about something. That's the glorious truth about writing: you have to think first!



So if nothing else (and there's lots else I'm sure!) blogs are a way to get our kids thinking, reflecting, and writing. Journals kind of do the same thing, but how many of us have classes where journaling is seen as boring? Hee hee hee, we get to trick the kids into journaling by offering them the latest and greatest in technology! And then, for the non-writers, podcasting!



Ah, late night epiphanies.


Intimidation factor: 1 out of 5

5 comments:

Jennifer said...

Hi Jess,

I especially will come back to your blog to see the latest photos of your little one. Great ones in the toboggan today.

Great comments and connections.

Joanne said...

Hi Jess,

You raise some good ideas about the potential for using blogs in classrooms as a way for students to practice reflective writing. It also provides students with an opportunity to engage in authentic writing experiences, since their blogs can be 'open' to others (even if it is peers, parents, and teachers, and not the whole wide world!)--when others comment on a blog and engage that child in a discussion about a topic that is meaningful, then it becomes such a valuable educational experience. But, like anything, a teacher has to be clear about why the technology is being used so that it is not 'technology for the sake of technology', which is what often happens.

When I taught EDES 545 last year, a couple of my students did presentations about blogs in schools, especially at the primary grades. If you (and others) are interested, I can post the powerpoints to the WebCT site...let me know.

elizabeth said...

Hi Joanne,
I would be very interested in the presentations on blogging for primary students! Thanks for the offer.

elizabeth said...

Jess, I love how the initimidation factor is going down! It is comforting reading about your thoughts and emotions as you progress through this experience. The photos are great!

Arlene said...

Hi again, Jess,

There were a number of things I liked in your blog. Like Elizabeth, I like your intimidation factor rating. I also like that you and Elisa have played with size and color of font. I will have to remember to do that. I also like how you infused humor when you wrote *hangs head in shame* Lastly, I enjoyed your late night epiphany - you don't know what you think until you write it down!

Arlene