The technology tools at the fingertips of a modern-day teacher are better than ever. Many teachers are leveraging blogs in the classroom in order to supplement their lessons. Whether it be by creating their own classroom blogs, incorporating teaching ideas from the blogs of other teachers, or incorporating data from topic-specific blogs into a lesson plan, there are multiple ways to leverage blogs in the classroom.
Here, we’ll review some of these in further detail.
Teachers no longer have to rely exclusively on offline tools for their lessons.
Help students to communicate with one another in the written form – By creating a blog for a class to utilize together, a teacher creates a platform by which students can communicate around things like written assignments, poetry, or personal feelings (akin to a journal entry).
Not only can students post their work in this public forum, but they can then also obtain feedback from other students on their posts and engage in conversation around each piece. Each post allows for the ability to practice writing with a human touch—this is critically important to practice in a world where social media dominates, and many in the workplace spend a great part of the day crafting emails to and writing documentation for others.
Children are often online at home—incorporating use of a blog into homework assignments is a no-brainer
Find new teaching tools on blog – Blogs written by other educators can help a teacher to identify fabulous new tools with which to teach. Lesson Plan Diva, for example, recently wrote a post about a learning platform called Scootpad that allows a teacher to assign homework to students individually and based on specific areas of need. Students can also chat in the app and collaborate to solve problems.
The best thing about any tool a teacher finds on an educator-written blog is the fact that it is typically teacher tested and approved (or not—blog reviews can be helpful in preventing a teacher from wasting time on certain tools and apps that aren’t helpful).
Find original lesson plans and approaches on Lesson Plan Blogs – No teacher wants to teach the same exact class over and again, year after year. Sometimes teachers can get something akin to writer’s block, where it becomes difficult to get creative with the same subject day after day.
Luckily, a teacher can find a really unique approach to her subject matter on blogs like that of The NY Times Lesson Plan Blog or Lesson Plan SOS—these can really help a teacher to think and therefore teach a bit out of the box if they happen to be feeling uninspired.
Finding supplementary data using topic-specific blogs – If I’m a 4th-grade teacher and am teaching about Black History for Black History month, I certainly don’t want to have to rely entirely on the textbook I’ve been provided with. I might try to find blogs of people who have experienced what it is to be black in America, and integrate those perspectives into my lesson plan.
CNN’s Black in America blog, for example, provides interesting insights from both the present day and past on what it is to be black in America, and offers up such interesting posts as those that consider ‘Who is Black in America?’ and other relevant topics to discuss in class.
There are so many different uses for a blog when it comes to teaching. Whether you are creating your own class blog, drawing upon the lessons and tools of other teachers via their blogs, or finding information to supplement your lesson plans through topic-specific blogs, you’ll never be left without opportunity in this medium.