Tremains Junior School, Bridgend

| May 11, 2009 | 4 Comments 

tremains-007This afternoon at Tremains Junior School, Brackla in Bridgend.

Again, the children, this time in Year 5, tackled new challenges with energy.

Some of them immersed themselves so fully it was hard to get them to stop writing.

Others swamped themselves in the experience and became incredibly realistic characters.

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After school we were joined by colleagues from the Infant School for a twilight session.

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The school use WordPress to blog. So do we.

gadwin-shottie-025Why Blog?

 The interactive nature of blogging creates enthusiasm for writing and communication.
 Blogging engages pupils in conversation and learning.
 Blogging provides the possibility of connecting with experts on the topic pupils are writing.
 Blogging affords us the opportunity to teach responsible public writing. Pupils can learn about the power of the published word and the responsibilities involved with public writing.
 The wider (or possibly worldwide) audience provides recognition for pupils that can be quite profound. Pupils feel more compelled to write when they believe many others may read and respond. It gives them motivation to excel.
 Blogs provide a space for sharing opinions and learning – a space where pupils and teachers can learn from each other.
 Blogs help learners to see knowledge as interconnected as opposed to a set of discrete facts.
 Blogs can give pupils a totally new perspective on the meaning of voice. As pupils explore their own learning and thinking and their distinctive voices emerge.
 Blogs foster ownership and choice. They help lead us away from pupils trying to find what the teacher wants in terms of an answer.
 The archive feature of blogging records ongoing learning. It facilitates reflection and evaluation.
 The opportunity for collective and collaborative learning is enormous. Pupils have the opportunity to read their classmates’ blogs and those of others.
 Blogging provides the opportunity for our pupils to learn to write for life-long learning.

Blog Ideas

These are just SOME ideas for how a blog might be used in school:

Class Blogs
• post assignments based on literature readings and have pupils respond on their own weblogs, creating a kind of portfolio of their work
• post class-related information such as calendars, events, homework assignments and other pertinent class information
• communicate with parents
• post prompts for writing
• provide examples of class work, vocabulary activities, or grammar games
• provide online readings for your pupils to read and react to
• gather and organise Internet resources for a specific course, providing links to appropriate sites and annotating the links as to what is relevant about them
• post photos and comment on class activities
• invite pupil comments or postings on issues in order to give them a writing voice
• publish examples of good pupil writing done in class
• show case pupil art, poetry, and creative stories
• create a dynamic teaching site, posting not only class-related information, but also activities, discussion topics, links to additional information about topics they are studying in class, and readings to inspire learning
• create a literature circle
• create an online book club
• make use of the commenting feature to have pupils publish messages on topics being used to develop language skills
• ask pupils to create their own individual course blogs, where they can post their own ideas, reactions and written work
• post tasks to carry out project-based learning tasks with pupils
• build a class newsletter, using pupil-written articles and photos they take
• link your class with another class somewhere else in the world
• their reactions to thought-provoking questions
• their reactions to photos you post
• journal entries
• results of surveys they carry out as part of a class unit
• their ideas and opinions about topics discussed in class

Personal Blogs
• complete class writing assignments
• create an ongoing portfolio of samples of their writing
• express their opinions on topics you are studying in class
• write comments, opinions, or questions on daily news items or issues of interest
• discuss activities they did in class and tell what they think about them – you, the teacher, can learn a lot this way
• write about class topics, using newly-learned vocabulary words and idioms
• showcase their best writing pieces

Group Blogs
• complete project work in small groups, assigning each group a different task
• showcase products of project-based learning
• complete a WebQuest

(Thank you Debs Ayerst from Rainhill CLC for help with some of these ideas).

Category: 1) Events and Training days

Comments (4)

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  1. Claire says:

    Thanks for a great twilight session. You’ve given us plenty of ideas to use in class. I’ve just bought MYST IV on Ebay!!!!!!!

  2. karen hooper says:

    Thanks for a great day today, lots of ideas to take away! It was fabulous to watch the children as they took part and to hear some of them (not who I would necessarily expect)reading out their writing because they wanted to share it with everybody else.

  3. sue lee says:

    Thanks Tim for an inspiring afternoon, both with the children and teachers.
    Hope you’ll come back soon, would love to see you work with the Infants.

  4. blog says:

    Hi Sue
    Yes. We had a great time and would love to come back and work with your infant children and staff sometime. Keep us posted how you get on. Cheers Tim

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