Friday, January 31, 2014

Star Academy Student Bloggers

Back in December I shared that the Star Academy teachers had started their own classroom blogs. If you haven't visited their sites in a while, you should check them out. Nearly every teacher's blog has developed in to a collaborative project with students publishing their own stories for a global audience.

For instance, Bodie (1st grade) shared how his class recently participated in a Mystery Skype session and Abhi (2nd grade) described some of his recent art projects. Akshaj (3rd grade) wrote a piece about sharing the book he recently published. Even Kindergartners are contributing to their class blog.

When I've shared these posts with other teachers I am often asked about the process. Are students posting on their own? Do students have their own blog? The answer to both question is, "no." The exact process varies from class to class, however students often create their posts on a sheet of paper or in their writer's notebook with the help of peers for editing and feedback. Once created many of the students work with their parents or teacher to type up the post in a Google Doc or email. After being reviewed the teacher adds the post to the blog.

Take a moment to check out each classroom's blog. Some blogs have more kid posts than others depending on what has been happening in the classroom and a few blogs even have posts collaboratively written by the class.  Remember, regardless of the format comments keep bloggers going, so these kids would love for you to leave them some feedback about their writing.

Speaking of comments...many students at Star Academy are using a commenting format we learned from Linda Yollis' class in Southern California (check out their student-produced video). You might try this strategy as well.
"A two-point comment adds something to the comment conversation. A commenter might compliment the writer in a specific way or add new information. Another idea is to make a connection. Maybe the post reminds you of an experience that you've had. Share that connection!  Try to end your comment with a relevant question. That way, an interesting conversation can develop."
If you have any questions about creating your own classroom blog please let me know. I'd be happy to help you and your students get your site all set up.


1st Grade

2nd Grade

3rd Grade

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