Writing, editing, and commenting on a blog site was a new area of learning for me. I was unfamiliar with the particulars of the blog and the site in general but quickly caught on. The blog showed me a different way of learning and responding to my classmates. It was quite helpful to be able to access and learn about GoogleReader. This site made the process of obtaining an article much easier and faster, especially considering I had a topic in mind. It is beneficial when teachers can offer their students with resources such as GoogleReader because many students may not know about it prior to the assignment, and it is useful even after the class has ended, which is a signifcant part of learning and teaching. It is always a positve when students take numerous things away from a class in terms of learning, and basic knowledge available to everyone such as GoogleReader is an example of this.
Using technology in the classroom always causes me a bit of worry. I’m always behind on the latest forms of technology and websites and worry that I will end up behind on the material or coursework if it involves working outside of the classroom without someone instructing you directly in person. These nerves were present when the blog unit was assigned, but I quickly realized it was a managable and simple process which one could catch on to quickly without the need of an instructor at all times. I believe it is a good idea to incorporate blogs, wikis, podcasts, and other forms of technology in the classroom. It allows for change from the norm of presentations and writing assignments in the classroom. These forms of technology are a positive for students who do not do well standing up in front of their classmates presenting material which they have been researching or working on. A blog allows students to express themselves and respond to their classmates in a comfortable setting, and many times the students views and ideas are more clearly expressed when it is in a different manner than standing up in front of a classroom.
Overall, I think the blog was a very good learning experience. I believe it would be a good alternative to other assignments in the classroom, and would definetly use it in my own classroom. I believe the blog could also be useful if the teacher were to assign a blog for a particular unit, such as novel. It could serve as the student’s journal and they could respond to different prompts given by the teacher, work on free writes, or respond to articles relating to the novel or themes in the novel. If students have access to a computer, blogging is a tool useful to many grade levels.