Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Transform your Classroom with Blogger




The image to the left is a bunch of piles.  They are sticks, but imagine that the sticks were finished student assignments.  The student picks up their pile, parts of the pile makes it home neatly in a folder.  Some of the pile makes it home, crumpled up in the student's backpack.  Other parts of the pile are never seen again.  

Photo Credit: Ian Sane via Compfight cc


How do we get the good stuff home?  

The answer is Publishing.  Blogger, is a blogging platform that students have accounts for, attached to their Google Apps for Education accounts.  Blogging is Publishing.  
Are your students writing? Making movies? Drawing? Taking photos? Recording their voices?  These can all be added to their Blog, easily.

If so, Let Blogger become their "one stop shop" to publish all of their work.



Blog Setup & Settings


Download the Blog Settings Cheat Sheet

Conventions





Blogging on the iPad

Blogsy

Pros: 

  • Versatile app, allows posting to many blogging websites.  
  • Integrates with Youtube, Flickr, Google+, etc, with a drag & drop interface.
  • Students can have their own blogs.
Cons:
  • Paid app
  • Somewhat difficult setup for an entire class.





EasyBlogger Jr.


Pros: 

  • Simple Blogging for young learners.
  • Allows students to post Photos, Video, & Writing.
  • Easy Setup.
Cons:
  • Built off of YOUR BLOG, not individual student blogs.
  • Posts VIDEO to YOUR YouTube Channel, Pictures to YOUR Picassa account.

Microblogging

Why not use another Platform to create a quick post to your blog!  I like using Instagram to create blog posts, to bring more traffic, & posts to my blog.  I just add a #specifichashtag to a Instagram post, & it uploads to my blog.

This requires using IFTTT.com to create.

IFTTT Recipe: Make a quick Photo Post in Blogger from Instagram connects instagram to blogger

How To

Embed a YouTube video


Add a photo








Looking for examples of students blogging? 

Check these out:



Thinkin About... http://blogs.goaj.org/gamekid/ (12 year old)
Third Grade is Fun http://blogs.goaj.org/emscanvas/ 11 years old)
Jaden's Awesome Blog http://jadensawesomeblog.blogspot.kr/



Sunday, May 3, 2015

Interaction!

interact
Image courtesy of David Shankbone via Flickr & Creative Commons License.
How do I interact with those whom I haven't met?  I like Twitter, but I like to think about how else I might use it, in conjunction with my blog.

While being in the Coetail Online2 Cohort, I have made attempts at engaging the COETAIL Community, via twitter, and through my blog.
Here are a few of my Twitter posts:
 
 I like Twitter, but I often do not find it engaging.  Maybe I prefer working with people I have met face to face.  Who doesn't?  But I wanted to find a way that I can get some interaction between my PLN and also a bit from the folks I have met in person. So I made few blog posts, using Google Forms to make them interactive.  Like this one. and this one.

Screen Shot 2015-05-03 at 1.09.58 PM   Screen Shot 2015-05-03 at 1.11.07 PM

 The plan was to pass out the blog post via Twitter, and via email to folks I know...  I asked the readers to fill in the form, and voila... the graphs automatically update.  I like that I was able to use the responses spreadsheet, and a little spreadsheet know-how to create graph-able data.  The graphs were native to Google Sheets.

Here is a direct link to the spreadsheet, should you want to have a look.

This is a process that I have felt that worked for me, and I feel that I want to find ways to use this in creating content in the future.  I might look at creating an e-book that has interactive elements, such as Instagram or quizzes...

My model may not be a direct, back and forth engagement, but I feel it does show interaction with my peers and PLN.  What do you think?  Send me a tweet at @art_schultz or comment below.