1/27/2005

The "blogolingüistic" community of bloggers

This weeks’ tasks have been challenging..., visiting and almost analyzing other people’s blogs has taught me that I’m not a single soul… trying to survive from students and teacher’s resistance to using new technologies at classrooms. I enjoyed it quite a lot!

I’ve noticed that not every student’s blog, not even the teachers’ are aimed at posting assignments, something that surprised me since that’s the first idea we got as teachers when we think about mixing blogs with classrooms. Both use them to record school experiences, although only one of the blogs visited was actually discussing themes an topics related to EFL class… however I was surprised to read blogs devoted to personal stuff only! It resembled some kind of personal diary.

Reacting to events is not a strange thing for bloggers… so I found many comments about current affairs in them… (world wide known and not that much)

What I liked most was the fact that cultural insights aren’t set aside… bloggers are aware that their thoughts and ideas are being exposed to the world and they respect that… I think that lingüistic constraints are surpassed by some kind of blogolingüistics… or sth…
No doubt interaction is the KEY, students and teachers look for ways to be in contact with equals; resources like smilies, colorful templates, images and interesting links make the weblogs more attractive inviting visitors to stay, read the messages and post a comment.

The question is how do teachers cope with students’ needs without being invasive.. Should we let them decide what and when to post a thought giving them space to grow up while learning… to discover the cyberworld in front of their eyes… to talk a new language….
They’ll show us the path….
we just have to set them free...

Cheers
Bet :)

Comments:
If this project is going to be graded, I would suggest 1 post a day, other than that let your students have free range. I mean the more they use it the more they learn, and thats the key ;-) right???
 
Bettina, I think you 'hit the nail on the head' when you say that interaction is key. For me, that's what blogging is all about: communicating and connecting with others. If blogs are being used only to post assignments, then they are too static. As you say, I think we need to give our students freedom to use that space as they wish and try to encourage them to reach out and converse with others.
 
I liked your comment about setting students free. I think that is one thing that might scare a lot of people away from using blogs with their classes: you can't really control it the way we as teachers may be used to controlling things.

I think that this EVO session has been most valuable to me because it has "forced" me to look at blogs and, more importantly, to actually attempt to blog. Right now I think my own vision is still to limited to begin to see all the possibilitites. Maybe the first step is setting ourselves free!
 
Dear Betinna,

I too would like students to be more reflective in class and outside. In other words, I would like them to think more critically. But having reflective tasks does not automatically mean students become reflective, speaking from experience using Online Learning Environments, such as Yahoo! Groups.

Perhaps students will begin to be more reflective academically when they are provided with an outlet to reflect on their personal life - using personal blogs. In any case, that's what I'm hoping for and investing time to learn how to blog.

Thanks for letting me share this with you.

azzam
http://azzambabble.blogspot.com
 
Hi Bettina,
a hug from another Argentinian in the group. I was reading your comments about the uses of blogs and after having visited so many I now understand perfectly well what Bee meant when she said " a blog is what you want it to be". Mine started off with personal stuff, because as we are on holiday and have no classes yet there was not much I could reflect upon in relation to my teaching. However, I now see how I have sort of developed a more reflective style and I think that has helped me to "see" what we don't normally see while we are teaching ... probably the behind the scenes of teaching ... the learning that goes together with our teaching. I hope I can transmit some of this "learning to reflect" to our students.

Regards from Bahía Blanca
www.aleweser.blogspot.com
 
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