Now that my kids are into their books and reading up a storm, I want to have them write about what they are reading and connect it to the content and standards we are covering in class. I was going to have my kids write weekly in a reading journal, but I thought that it may make their reading seem more tedious and not as enjoyable. So I decided to have my kids create their own blog and write about what they are reading. I signed up for kidblog.org- it is a free blogging website where a teacher can set up individual blogs for his/ her class. Each kid gets a username and password, and the blogs can be set up for just the class to view or for them to be public. The teacher can choose to moderate each post by approving posts or comments. The students can add colors, change fonts, add pictures videos and music (which is the most important part to them!!). I showed them this video from youtube about what a blog is:
Last week was the first week we blogged about our books. I took the kids to the lab, gave them their username and passwords and the directions and rubric for the blog. We talked about what makes people want to read a blog ( pictures, color, video clips etc..- not just plain black and white). The first week they wrote a brief summary of their book and them made connections (text to text, text to self and text to world). Once they all were logged in- the lab was silent for the rest of the period. They were writing up a storm! They were really into what they were doing because they knew had an authentic audience (they were all going to read each other’s blogs), so they wanted to make sure that what they wrote was good.
I gave each student one week to complete their blog and post it. What I love to see are the students commenting on each other’s posts and making comments about putting books on their ‘books I plan to read’ sheet!!
So far I am very pleased with how the blogging is going! If you are thinking about blogging and worried about privacy and parents etc… check out kidblog.org. It is a safe place for kids to get blogging!