Tuesday, March 26, 2013

CUE Reflections Pt. 1: Linda Yollis’ Session on Blogging

The long anticipated annual CUE conference last week exceeded my expectations. There was so much I learned that I will be sharing about it and the resources I received in a brief series of posts. One of my favorite sessions was Linda Yollis’ “Blogging: Teaching Commenting Skills and Encouraging Parent Participation.”

When using a tech. tool in the classroom it is crucial to have an objective to make an impact on student learning. Through blogging Linda facilitates the building of writing skills, commenting on the web, content across the disciplines, digital citizenship, internet safety, learning beyond the classroom, and inclusivity of the community. If you visit her blog it may be hard to imagine doing it all, but Mrs. Yollis encouraged the session participants to start with one thing, her blog has grown over the years.

A few best practices:

  • Linda starts the beginning of the school year by using the blog. She posts a welcome back video published the day before school and emails it out to the class. She invites people to introduce themselves and reviews the comments with the class. 

  • Cluster map gadget you can use this for geography, but also for math. Put the number of vistors, and explained number placement. Also for math instruction, posting a word problem, then encouraging students to create a story with a word problem. 

Bonus: Linda finds her students are more concerned about perfecting their work since students can view this work from around the world. To quote another CUE speaker Rushton Hurley, "When students create for other students they want it to be good, when done for the teacher they make it good enough."

If want to learn more about how to use blogging in your classroom check out Linda’s online resources:

Check out her blog: http://yollisclassblog.blogspot.com/

Blogging wiki: http://educational-blogging.wikispaces.com/

Video made by Linda and her students on how to comment on the blog:

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