I’ve put this here as an aide-memoire to myself, to start blogs with some of my classes this year. It’s good to hear about the stories of how a teacher started getting students to blog and then continued, for example:
Welcome to the Journalism 2 Weblog where we will carry on a conversation about this class and about journalism as a whole. I’m expecting you to get in here and add to the conversation twice a week. That means an average (read: “C” for you grade grubbers) effort on your part would be around 15-20 meaningful posts over the next nine weeks. The more the better. (Remember the word meaningful,however.) A weekly topic will be posted in the left-hand column to get you started, but if you want the big bonus points, post here on your own. Find interesting articles or links that you think the class would be interested in and add them with a bit of comment or question. For a good example of what I’m talking about, see Metafilter. Debate is encouraged, but remember, be civil. I’ll try to enter the conversation too. So have fun with this and use it as a way to push your learning about journalism, the news, and the world around you.
I can’t help thinking that there will be some very real opportunities for students to think for themselves, generated in a virtual environment. I’ve already seen this happening using twitter with my Year Ten class, and it taps in to where they’re at. It will also be a perfect chance for my Year Elevens to read plenty of news stories and engage hopefully at a sophisticated level with media. Here you’ll see how the students engaged with this teacher’s first blog. His name’s Will Richardson, by the way, and he seems to have engaged a lot with using blogging and other technology for educational purposes.