I value the importance of having strong, meaningful relationships with my students and their families. Through our ability to connect and communicate effectively, I am able to model how we will be learning alongside each other throughout our year together. With these ideas in mind I started to use Kidblog as a platform to help me establish positive relationships with my students and their families.
When I first began using Kidblog in 2011 I was really excited because I saw this platform as an opportunity for me to have an impact on learning happening inside/outside of Kindergarten. So my journey began.
Creating opportunities for my students and their families to share and connect before Kindergarten started was grand! Right away people started sharing photos of their travels as well as having their child begin to type their words. This appeared as a string of letters, but some parents would type in parentheses what their child wanted to tell me. Immediately many ideas started to come into my mind about how Kidblog is already and will continue to help me connect, engage, and enrich not only learning, but help foster meaningful relationships with my students and their families. This is important because the relationships we have with our learning communities is at the heart of our work. Kidblog fulfilled this expectation well before school started and even before I met some of my students!
One of my former students created a post on their Kidblog about something they designed with materials at their home. This student was able to share this exploration with me because of Kidblog. My student took a photograph, created a title and some words to describe what he created. He created something that “worked with electricity.” Together, this child and parent were able to experience the importance of this digital platform, as well as share an interest from home. What a great way to connect home and school!
Afterwards, this family sent me a tweet to tell me that he had just created a post. I was then able to tweet back to communicate and connect with my student. I was also able to leave a comment on his new blog post! Here is where we begin to have a conversation! Now I have another opportunity to model how to be a safe, kind and responsible digital citizen through an authentic learning opportunity. Later this student would be able to share his post inside Kindergarten, facilitate questions, comments and compliments. What a wonderful way to strengthen a child’s confidence and self-esteem.
Through this type of interaction my learning culture because rich and interactive. My students take risks and build confidence because what they are creating is important to them and I have given them a platform to share.
When you begin on the first day of school modeling and using Kidblog as a platform, you are offering invitations to your students to learn alongside you. This is important because I want to engage and connect with what is important in my students lives. Last week I asked one of my students why he wanted to write a post on Kidblog and he said, “because I can share with the world.” Once you have experienced this, there is no going back!
So when people ask me why I use Kidblog, I share:
- It offers educators a way to celebrate the learning that is happening daily inside our classrooms. Kids get excited and are relentless with sharing their ideas.
- Self-esteem is raised because it offers all your students an opportunity to share their voice. Student voice is at the heart of what we do. This is important to remember.
- I want engagement from my students and their families. Kidblog offers me a platform to do this. Families connect and even extended families! Think of how this makes a child feel. IMPORTANT!
- Digital citizenship is so important. Kidblog offers us all an opportunity to model what this feels like, sounds like, and looks like. It offers invitations to showcase what is important and what we are curious about.
- Connecting globally and developing an audience with a variety of perspectives is important. Kidblog gives you lots of ways to begin to develop what it means to have a perspective and why.
As an educator I value innovation and creativity. Through these ideas we are able to encourage our students to be curious, ask questions, and reflect. Learning is for everyone. Technology gives us all a voice. Kidblog is a safe, friendly platform with lots of opportunities to share what is important to your students.