Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Utilizing Blogs in the Classroom

Technology has become a vital aspect of the educational process. Incorporating technolgy into lessons and interactions with student is as imperative as teaching reading, writing and mathematics. Utilizing technology in the classroom looks very different at the various grade levels; however, at any given grade level it all begins with the teacher.

Becoming proficient with technology should be a requirement for all teachers, because unfortunately "today’s schools are faced with a difficult dilemma that pits a student body that has grown up immersed in technology against a teaching faculty that is less facile with the tools of the trade” (Richardson 2009). In order to have an impact on my students, I must be technologically savy. One of my greatest strengths as an educator is that I am in my mid-twenties. I have the iphone and all of the latest technology. However, I am pursuing this degree because I am not yet profcient with blogs, wikis, podcasts and many other technologically advanced items. By furthering my education of how technology works and can be utilized, I am better equipped to service my students.

Incorporating blogs into learning, can be beneficial for many different reasons. To begin with, "blogging has quickly become one of the most effective learning tools in education today" (Benzinger 2009). Students in middle and high school are able to express their thoughts freely without worrying about confining their ideas to a standard written English format. Students can discuss, critisize and argue their view points without fear of embarassment. In addition, students are engaged when blogging and take pride in their reflections and ideas. Students become involved to the point that they will "publish to their school blogs even when not instructed to" (Benzinger 2009). The meer student dedication to blogging encourages me to utilize this tool in the classroom.

In a 2nd grade classroom (all subject areas), blogging will look very different than at the middle or high school levels. Here are some ideas for utilizing blogging in the classroom:
(Due to the grade level and developmental level of my stduents, this would be whole group/teacher directed and the teacher would scribe the student's ideas, comments and dialogue. The projection system would be used, so the entire class could view the blog while it was being made.)

*Incorporate a weekly post on a current events website.
*Incorporate a blog search for scientific questions or research on a particular science topic.
*Participate in an international blog to discuss academic or world issues with a class overseas.

Any thoughts on these ideas?


Benzinger, Brian, Educational Blogging (2009) Retrieved November 11, 2009, from

Richardson, W. (2009). Blogs, wiks, podcasts, and other powerful web tools for classrooms (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.


KJ said...

Is this going to be done as a whole class activity where all the students are collaborating to create one blog? If that is the case, I would suggest using podcasts to accomplish this task. This will allow for your students to take a more active role in responding to the topics you choose. I really love the ideas of using blogs to respond to current events and also to collaborate globally.

According to Dr. Thornburg (2007), some of the advantages of new technology is that it allows access to global peer groups and "shrinks space" by allowing for collaboration at a distance.

"In just a few short years, podcasting has become all the rage..." (Richardson, 2009, p. 111). Your students will have the opportunity to share their ideas with other students from all around the world through this piece of technology. Richardson goes on to talk about a website ( which lists almost 1,000 shows related to education. He states that "not only is there a growing directory of educators who are doing personal podcasts, there are links to suggested classroom uses broken down both by grade level and subject" (2009, p. 113).

I am looking forward to incorporating podcasts into my science classes this year. Our fifth grade teachers have used podcasts with their students and the results have been very positive.


Laureate Education, Inc. (Producer). (2007). Understanding the Impact of Technology on Education, Work, and Society [Motion picture]. Baltimore.

Richardson, W. (2006). Blogs, wiks, podcasts, and other powerful web tools for classrooms (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Erika said...

I think that your ideas for how to incorporate blogs in your classroom all encourage the development of critical thinking and in-depth questioning skills. Not only would your students have to discuss topics, such as current events, they would have to collaborate when deciding what information they should include in your group posts. "It can help students become much more media and information literate by clarifying the choices they make about the content they write about...and it can teach the essential skill of collaboration" (Richardson, 2009, p. 36).

Have you found any websites that contain kid-friendly information in regards to current events and science? Using the Internet is a great resource for our students, but I have difficulty locating resources that are appropriate for a lower-elementary grade level. I would appreciate any insight that you can provide.

Richardson, W. (2006). Blogs, wiks, podcasts, and other powerful web tools for classrooms (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Hayley D said...

There are several websites available for current events for Elementary students. Here are some links:

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