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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Persistence- The Key to Successful Classroom Blogging

My mom and brothers in 1990
I've been fortunate to have been invited to speak about blogging at a number of schools and conferences. One of the points that I always try to make in my talks about blogging is "keep blogging even if only your mother is reading your blog."

Teachers (and many others) often give up on blogging because they think that no one is reading their blog posts. It takes persistence to make a blog work if you're the only author. Keep writing even if only one person is reading it. That one person may tell another about your work and then you'll have doubled your readership. But if you stop writing because you think no one is reading then no one will be reading or sharing your blog posts.

To take this idea to classroom blogs remember that it takes time and persistence to get students and their parents to regularly check your classroom blog. These are the pitfalls to avoid that I'll fully admit I fell into the first time I tried to use blogging in my classroom. My first use of a blog was simply to distribute information and have students comment on it. The pitfall here was allowing to students to email comments instead of posting them on the blog when they forgot their log-in credentials. My second use of blogging was having students write reflections of what they had learned during the week. The pitfall here was, again, letting students email their reflections instead of posting them on the blog. The whole point of having the classroom blog was to have students share with each other and comment on their classmates' ideas. When I didn't have the persistence to say, "no, you need to reset your password" then the blogging activity lost its momentum. When I started saying, "no, you need to post to the blog" then my classroom blogging activities became successful.

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