Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Current conclusions

Very positive!

On the whole we think that teachers and students alike enjoyed the blogging experience. It is definitely a fantastic opportunity for students to be able to authentically communicate with a wider audience. Students are no longer only writing for their teacher but for an audience. Being on the internet anyone could potentially read what they have written as well as their classmates having links to each others blogs.

Students believed that blogging helped their writing in terms of improving their grammar and vocabulary but they also felt that their reading improved through being exposed to other people’s blogs. In the focus groups students spoke about learning vocabulary and grammar structures from reading other peoples blogs.

For teachers it is also a fantastic opportunity to learn too. Blogger is constantly updating with new advances in technology and students are usually more than keen to show us how to use them. For example, when we started blogging you had to use a different website to upload photos whereas now it is as easy as clicking the icon and uploading directly from your computer – trust us much easier!

I think for us as teachers too this experience has been great because we are able to step back a bit and take more of a facilitators role. Once students know how to create a blog it is their decision as to which direction the blog takes. It is up to them how much (or how little since this was not assessed) they post. Students were able to take control in an authentic communicative situation with a genuine audience – what more could we ask for?


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