Searching for a way to connect with her incoming Kindergarteners, Sharon Davison turned to blogging. Seven years later, Sharon and her students have reached beyond friends and family and have spoken to the world using Kidblog.
What motivated you to start blogging with your students?
SD: “I started blogging using Kidblog about 7 years ago because I wanted to try to find a way to make a connection with my families and my new students before Kindergarten started. Kidblog seemed like a great way for people to share photos, ask questions and share what they were exploring during the summer. Kidblog was a platform that I used to help create and develop relationships with my families. I found that people were interested in connecting and Kidblog was the beginning for me in helping me develop relationships with my new students and their families.”
What has been the biggest surprise to you throughout your classroom blogging journey?
SD: “One of the biggest surprises for me was how motivated my students are to create blog posts. My students know that other people will be looking at our learning so my students work hard to do their best work. I feel that my perspective and that of my students has widened and we all have a sense of audience and how important that is when it comes to sharing our learning.
Another surprise was how my students made authentic connections with their writing and even noticed what “Super Powers”/reading strategies they were using to create a post. As a teacher this really opened up my mind to what might be possible in regards to learning and how driven my students were to share what they knew.”
Do you have a favorite blogging ‘moment’?
SD: “A few years ago one of my students was blogging and I asked him why he liked his Kidblog. He said; “Mrs. D. I get to share my learning with the world.” This really spoke to me as to how important it is to think about how I can explore a global audience with my students. This built perspective and created an awareness of audience.”
What has been the biggest challenge you have faced with blogging in the classroom and how did you overcome this obstacle?
SD: “This past year has been really challenging for me with Kidblog. My class size is 20 and it has been very challenging to work with a large group with so many different abilities. One idea I have tried and it has helped is to partner up my students with each other. This way posts can be created and if someone needs help, they can work and collaborate with a peer.”
What is your favorite Kidblog feature?
SD: “I really like the map because it gives my students an idea about where in the world people are from who are interested in our learning. I also like that my students can create their own identity.”
What do your students love most about Kidblog?
SD: “My students really like to read their comments. The comments are motivating and give my students feedback about their posts.”