I have wanted to try blogging with my 3rd graders for a while now, so I checked the site out. It is VERY user friendly for both teachers and students. You do not have to be tech nerd to figure it all out (although I am). I sat down and created student accounts and passwords in about 5 minutes. Next I printed up cards for each student to have with the website, username and their own password. I must admit I was a little hesitant about teaching this in our school computer lab. Sometimes a lesson like this, coupled with a bunch of kids who may or may not be listening given the time of day and the fullness of the moon, can crash in burn in a ball of flames only comparable to the A-bomb!
I am happy to say that the lesson went off without a hitch. The kids hung on my every word as I walked them through step by step instructions of how to log in, create a title, write the blog, edit, and post. I even taught them how to comment on their friends' blogs. I explained to them that blogging was simply writing online. They were hooked!
Because it is a kid friendly site, it is very safe. NO ONE can see any of their blogs without a username and password issued by me and all of their posts and comments have to be moderated by me. I logged on last night to moderate their comments and read their blogs and I was shocked at how many of them blogged again last night after they got home...about half the class. It is the same way tonight. They cannot get enough of it. No, all of their posts are not perfect, but they are loving the learning of it all. Isn't that what school is all about?
Here are just of few of their comments about their new found blogging hobby.
"Blogging is totally awesome."
"Blogging is way more fun than writing on paper."
"Blogging makes me feel alive."
"Blogging is the best way to write."
"Blogging makes writing fun."