Blogging – a reflection #2

Series of posts for the ASLA Online 2008 conference.

It’s interesting to look at blogging as a form of communication – in the broader context, not just in education. Blogging has become a highly interactive experience, and permiates so many parts of society, not just education. The media have adopted blogging, companies have adopted bloging, mums and dads have adopted blogging – the world is certainly changing.

Lets’ take the Sydney Morning Herald as an example. The Herald has quite a number of blogs throughout the site. You can see the full range at Blog Central! When you looks at the Herald’s most viewed items, blogs are amongst the ones that are covered.

The uptake of blogging in the media, and the corporate world accentuates the importance for teachers and teacher librarians to stop, recheck, then adopt blogging in some form or another. The Read/Write web is with us, and citizen reporting is a crucial part of the developments taking place globally.

Moving Forward is an excellent wiki that covers many aspecst of our mulitmodal education journey. On this wiki you will find that key Blog Posts have been archived, so that you can revisit some of the foundational or provocative blog posts to date. These posts have generated significant discussion in the comments section and/or in the blogosphere as a whole.

But back to the broader context! If you haven’t already seen it, then this video from the Commoncraft Show explains how blogging emerged and how blogging now fits into our world for fun, hobbies, family, news and more.

If you’ve discovered something new, or would like to add to these ideas, please share it by adding a comment to this post.

  • 8 thoughts on “Blogging – a reflection #2

    1. Mainstream media cannot avoid blogging forever. The simple fact is that there are some great bloggers writing great material that is equal to or better than some of material produced by ‘paid’ journalists and writers working in mainstream media.

    2. Just have to say I love the shirt. My husband and I have a joke whenever we say anything that could be embarrassing, “I’m blogging that.” I’m going to have to get him one of these!

      I also find it interesting that librarians embrace blogging as an educational tool but corporate America does not. Read some of the comments on Tony Karrer’s site.

    3. I think we are just starting to see blogging becoming more accepted in our schools and with our teachers. I think it will still be a slow development but the interest is certainly increasing where I am, and it is very exciting to be part of the movement.

    4. Great idea to point out how blogs are being used in mainstream media.

      In fact, that was one way we managed to get “blogs” unblocked in our district–was pointing out all the valuable blogs for our high school students at the Washington Post. (like the Supreme Court blog for example).

    5. Agreed Jude. I am agitating for more of this ‘in house’ in our K-6 school as I realise it is needed. Have been working with wikis too of late and finding this quite remarkable, even though our kids are accessing through shared logins at the moment. Still managing OK. Student voices coming through loud and clear. And literacy everywhere . . .

      Just wrote a paper including blogging as a literature-based strategy; referenced Ellison and Wu (2008) in Jl of Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia 17(1) 99-122. Thanks again for your continued blogging goodness.

    6. Hey Jude, I enjoy your posts; you’re part of my PLN. I was preparing this post when you beat me to it. Anyway, here are my experiences after one short year of blogging.
      Keep up the good work,
      Doug Stoltz

      I started blogging in the middle of May 2007. In this post I reflect on my experiences after one year of blogging.
      First, I’ll deal with questions about why I started blogging and why I have continued. I started with some rather naive ideas about communicating with a captive audience of clients, students and staff. With over 400 kids in the school at the time, I expected a couple hundred parents would be keen to follow my every word. Was I ever mistaken! It didn’t take me long to realize that no-one, not even my staff, was reading my blog. Since by that time, my blog was directed primarily towards staff and parents, the observation that they were not reading it, was perplexing, to say the least. Was it due to their slow adoption of RSS, lack of interest, ignorance or fear of web 2.0?
      To stimulate parents to read my blog, I essentially quit producing our regular newsletter and continually promoted the blog as a source of information. At this point in time, I really don’t know if this approach has been successful in influencing parents. My ability to influence staff is much stronger, and so their professional development (PD) priorities were realigned to focus on technology. (If I played it right, I could almost equate successful PD with reading my blog.)
      In less than six months, focusing PD on technology has lead to a spectacular increase in staff use of web 2.0 technologies, which will eventually affect their classroom activities, and a noticeable, but less spectacular increase in blog readership. For instance, one year ago a search of Youtube or Classroom 2.0 for Sekolah Bogor Raya would yield no hits, whereas now it yields several hits, with the number growing actively. In the cases of both parents and staff, I firmly believe the poor or slow adoption of RSS is the main reason for continuing low readership.
      So, despite the lack of readers, why do I continue to blog? Simply because I am passionate about learning, and I learn far more from blogging, including reading both and writing (with its forced reflection), than from any other form of professional development. Others have cited the same reason. A heartfelt thanks is in order to all who contribute to the blogosphere.
      Another reason for blogging is to market my school, which has succeeded at least in terms of increasing traffic to our website. I had hoped to start conversations about Sekolah Bogor Raya, which could provide opportunities for word-of-mouth advertising, since word-of-mouth advertising is perhaps the most important form, especially for schools. I am somewhat amazed by the slow realization by most Indonesian National Plus Schools of the potent marketing opportunity offered by the internet. One exception is Sekolah Global Jaya, whose innovative executive principal, Richard Henry, has recently started podcasting. Congratulations, Richard.
      This post has rambled a bit, but maybe that’s just the nature of reflection, following ideas wherever they take you.

    7. What surprised me most about blogging is the fact that blogs are not merely easy to publish web sites– they are a means to spark conversations.

      When I first started blogging I had a deathly fear of being wrong. Then I heard Nancy White speak and she said that blogging gives her the opportunity to have her thinking corrected. By readjusting my thinking, I exhalted, took risks and plunged in — ready to be corrected and to share ideas.

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