Blogging and Social Media

Blog Basics
  • What is a blog? How does it work?
  • Why should my students blog?

Activity #1

Check out these student blogs!  This was our first time trying out 20% Time, and students reflected on their 20% Time Projects while learning how to write for an authentic audience.  

Logistics - Setting Up Blogs
  • Blog Engines
    • Blogger (Use their Google Account) RECOMMENDED
    • Wordpress (Need to set up their own account)
  • Set-up
    • In class activity
    • Student "experts" to help other students
    • It's helpful if the teacher has gone through the process (Hint, hint!)
  • Management
    • Collecting links with Forms
    • Organization - Feedly 
    • Grading - To grade or not to grade?
      • Deadlines
      • Quality

Instructional Uses
Classroom Blog
    Teacher Blog instead of a website
    1. Jen Robert's 9th grade English
    Student Blog
    21st Century Lit Circles
    1. Introduction
    2. Roles
    3. Examples
    4. Book Review (Final Assignment)
      • Helpful for new students
      • Gives students ideas for what works/what doesn’t
      • Possibility of creating a Lit Blog library (if students purchase then donate)
      • Sample

    Authentic Audiences
    Most writing assignments are only seen by the teacher.  When students begin writing for a larger audience, their work becomes more meaningful.  This often translates to better quality writing.  When students know there is the possibility that the whole world can see what their doing, they take more ownership in what they present!

    Examples of real-world interactions: 

    Activity #2

    Blog Brainstorm!
    What other ways can you incorporate student blogging?  Think about what you're already doing that might fit nicely with this type of project.  Or, come up with something entirely new!  
    • Enter at least one idea on this shared doc.
    • Save a copy of the doc so you can go back later for inspiration! 

    Additional Resources

    Social Media

    Writing and thinking can take many forms. Sometimes trying to express a complex idea in an abbreviated manner can challenge the students in a different way. These two strategies give students that chance in a world they know - social media.

    1. Fake Tweet Builder | Twitter Tweet Generator
      Say what you want about social media, but have you tried to boil down an idea or an exchange to 140 characters? It is more difficult than you think!

      Samples: Assignment | Student Examples | Historical Tweets - professional fake tweets

    2. imgflip - Meme Creator
      Memes have become all the rage in your students Instagram and Tumblr feeds. What if you had them apply those ideas to a book you are reading or an idea being discussed in class?  


                Samples: Assignment | Student Examples -  Hamlet  The Crucible

    Activity #3 - Create a meme based on a character from a novel, play, short story, etc. that you teach!

    1. Facebook iPhone Generators
      There are generators for just about everything.
      1. Facebook Hamlet 
      2. Fakebook Romeo and Juliet
      3. Text Messages - Romeo and Juliet Act II Scene iii