Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Fifth Grade Bloggers!!!

This year we started a pilot program with out 5th grade classes - BLOGGING! Both Fifth Grade Teachers and I are collaborating on this adventure with our students! A blog is a special type of online journal, in the form of a web site, that can be created and easily updated using a web browser. The exciting thing about a blog is that students can take full advantage of the wealth of resources available on the Internet by actually publishing their own work online. Students can also read and comment on other children’s blogs within their MGS grade level.

So far, we each 5th grade tech class has posted a group post, and are now practicing "commenting" on either those blogs or one of the posts from myself or one of the 5th grade teachers. We have talked about the qualities of EXCELLENT commenting - positive, adding to the conversation, correct punctuation and grammar, about a paragraph in length. Even our principal and band instructor have commented on our posts!!! The students are VERY excited to share their comments through blogging!

We will be using a variety of subject matter to guide the students in their blogging, as well as incorporating excellent writing techniques! Our goal is to have 3 EXCELLENT comments before being given permission to blog an original post to our classroom blog. Many of the students are well on the way to earning this privilege! Below are the conditions that students have agreed to in order to participate in our blogging project.

Blogging Terms and Conditions
1. Students using blogs are expected to act safely by keeping personal information out of their posts. You agree to not post or give out your family name, password, user name, email address, home address, school name, city, country or other information that could help someone locate or contact you in person. You may share your interests, ideas and preferences.
2. Students using blogs agree to not share their user name or password with anyone besides their teachers and parents. You agree to never log in as another student.
3. Students using blogs are expected to treat blog spaces as classroom spaces. Speech that is inappropriate for class is not appropriate for your blog. While we encourage you to engage in debate and conversation with other bloggers, we also expect that you will conduct yourself in a manner reflective of a representative of this school.
4. Student blogs are to be a forum for student expression. However, they are first and foremost a tool for learning, and as such will sometimes be constrained by the various requirements and rules of classroom teachers. Students are welcome to post on any school-appropriate subject.
5. Students blogs are to be a vehicle for sharing student writing with real audiences. All blogs are proofread by the classroom teacher before being posted on the MGS student blog
6. Students using blogs take good care of the computers by not downloading or installing any software without permission, and not clicking on ads or competitions.
7. Students who do not abide by these terms and conditions may lose their opportunity to take part in this project.