Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Why bring blogging into your classroom?

at Two Writing Teachers!
Wow.  My 2nd March Challenge is over.  (Can it really be that last year was my first March Challenge?  It seems like I've been slicing forever!)

While I loved the challenge and feel proud that I completed it again, this year was really all about my students.  Thus, this year was even more rewarding.  (It was also infinitely more exhausting!)

This year, my own slices and comments were fun, but they were not my focus.  I still grew as a writer, but not as much as last year.  This year, I grew as a teacher of writers.

I stretched and grew during the classroom challenge:
  • posting my own daily link-up posts on our class blog, modeled after the TWT ones
  • using the Kidblog iOS app to easily approve comments throughout the day
  • commenting on student posts each day, in addition to adult slicers' posts! 
  • Skyping in class (with Lee Ann and her students!)
  • creating connections with other classrooms across the country
  • running commenting challenges and other prize giveaways for my students, modeled after the ones Ruth and Stacey do
  • gaining a much deeper appreciation for my students' lives and strengthening positive relationships with them
Best of all, my students stretched themselves and grew too!  Before Spring Break, our quarter ended and my students did our usual end-of-quarter reflection and evaluation.  I was pleased to see how many of them mentioned blogging (and specifically the March Challenge!) as one of the most enjoyable AND beneficial activities of the quarter.  

Look how many different benefits of blogging they came up with!

building classroom community and empathy/tolerance for others!
practicing interpersonal communication skills!
authentic audience!
gaining courage to share your stories!
I couldn't have said it better myself!  Student blogging is an incredible experience that will transform your classroom... and your students' lives.

Still not convinced? Read a student's goodbye to the March Challenge.


  1. Wow! This is so exciting to hear from your students. Thanks for sharing their responses with us.

  2. I love it! It was great to read your student's comments in their own handwriting. This was my first year doing the challenge myself, and I have thought about doing it with my students next year. I just have to figure out the best way to do so. Thank you for the inspiration!

  3. I am so glad you shared your student's thoughts about the blogging. You worked so hard to encourage and support your students. This will be the year they remember. I loved Latifa's post.What a month you've had, it's been great, right?

  4. This was a very different March for me as well. But at the same time, it was wonderful to share blogging with my students. Thank you again for your supportive comments to my students.

  5. It's really wonderful that you did this for your students, Jennifer. What a lot of work for you. I'm sorry I didn't find time to see their slices, but it looks as if they got plenty of reader love! Their comments are good to see. They'll remember this for a long time.


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