Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Thinking of Starting a Blog in 2018? - Here Are My Recommendations

Are you thinking about starting a blog in 2018? If you are, here are my recommendations based on more than a decade of daily blogging.

Classroom Blogging
If you want to start a blog to use with your students my first recommendation is to try Edublogs. It runs on the powerful WordPress platform but doesn't require you to worry about any of the technical aspects of using WordPress. More importantly, you have control over the creation of your students' usernames and passwords. Blogs and individual blog posts can be made private, password-protected, or public.

Blogger is a good option for G Suite for Education users. If you get your G Suite for Education administrator to enable Blogger on your domain, your students can log into Blogger by using their Google Accounts. Blogger doesn't have quite as many privacy options as Edublogs, but there are enough privacy options for most classroom settings.

Weebly for Education, like Edublogs, lets teachers create and manage students' accounts. The limitation of Weebly for Education is that you can only have 40 students in your account for free. Weebly was originally designed to be a website builder, and it is good at that, so there are quite a few options built into it that you won't need if you're just using it for a classroom blog.

Personal / Professional Blogging
Many, many times that if I was starting Free Technology for Teachers today, it would be done as a self-hosted WordPress blog. In fact, every other blog and website that I run is built that way. A self-hosted WordPress blog will give you the ultimate in design and function flexibility. On this page I have written directions and detailed step-by-step tutorial videos that will walk you through the process of creating a self-hosted WordPress blog.

If creating a self-hosted WordPress blog isn't the route you want to go, I'd then consider using Weebly (affiliate link). My buddy Tom Richey has been quite successful in building a nice following through his Weebly-powered site.

Learn more about how to create a great classroom blog in this recorded Practical Ed Tech webinar

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