When introducing the idea of blogging I always begin with a familiar story. This allows students to begin to make a connection between blogging and a loved story. To start, I show the title of the book and ask my students to look at the illustration. We discuss the illustration and offer one way it represents what the story is about. We do the same for the title. Then, as we begin to read the book, we take notice of items like words, colors, and pictures. We begin to understand that these are things we will need to include when we are blogging. So, just like beginning readers and writers, we will create blog posts with a title and a photo. As we grow as readers and writers, we will add more content in our blogs and out blogs will change over time.
This is how our blogging evolves in Kindergarten. It is important to think about always connecting something explicit with what you are introducing to the students. This way students can make a connection with something they know and understand. This helps to build an awareness of what is possible.
Tips and Tricks used in my Kindergarten Class:
- Logging in – I created a “How To” use Kidblog book for my students. I have a couple copies in my classroom in a special spot with each child’s log in cards. This was a nice way to extend our “how to” theme, as well as, serve as a way for my students to become independent in their use of creating a post. The children can read the familiar text and, because it is step by step, it helps children work independently with support if needed.
- Posting – When we post we always think about the following items:
- Photograph, drawing or an illustration
- Kind words that go along with our picture
- Leave spaces in between our words
- Sound out our words
- Commenting – When we leave comments we want people to feel happy. Sometimes we will also ask questions.
- Compliment something we see or read
- Ask a question
- Think before we write so others know what we are trying to communicate
- We only use kind words
- Connecting: Family/Extended Family/Global – Parents are important stakeholders and really want to be a part of their child’s educational journey. Kidblog provides a pathway for this to happen.
- Kidblog posts can be published to different audiences – Teacher, Class Members, Connections, Public
- Families like to share with extended family as a way to be a part of their child’s life.
- Your students will be excited and motivated to share their family’s comments with others. It is a nice way to begin establishing conversations online in a safe, kind and responsible way.
- Modeling alongside your students and their families helps them understand how digital tools and platforms can be used in meaningful ways. This is all related to what we are learning.
I am in my 6th year of using Kidblog. Each year I learn something new about how Kidblog can be an integral part of my busy days in Kindergarten. It offers both me and my students opportunities to be transparent about what we are learning and why. When we share this with the world we are modeling how to connect globally with others. Eventually, collaborations appear through our overall desire to make a difference.