Often times, when teachers start their classes on writing assignments, students are only "politely" enthused. Though the traditional approach does have merit and is a good place to start, teachers should consider using it only as a jump-off point to publishing on the internet. When students discover their essays will be published to the worldwide web, they become genuinely excited at the prospect. For them, people beyond the teacher will have the opportunity to see their creativity and possibly provide feedback (if the teacher allows comments to be entered).
How can this safely be done? Though there are many blogging sites on the internet, here is one that is geared to teachers and their students---EDUBLOGS. A simple blog is free, but if a teacher wishes to have the entire class interacting with it, there is a small fee, but many teachers don't go that far.
There are other blogging sites with GOOGLE BLOGSPOT being the most popular. However, Edublogs has the option of uploading PDFs while BLOGSPOT does not. BLOGSPOT is also used in classrooms but with the understanding that the submissions are strictly for class use. Again, teachers use it as a blog and as a "website." Both are easy to use for teacher and student.
How can blogs be used to motivate students to write and enjoy the process? What about students completing class projects on their blogs instead of with power points? Students can upload videos (their own files or ones from the net), incredible photos to support their project, audio if it supports their writing, etc. All these tools would be used to add grab the attention of the reader of their written work. Every add-on would serve only one purpose-to make the student's writing more engaging and informative for the reader. In the global workforce, this is done regularly so why not give students the opportunity (actually multiple opportunities from multiple disciplines) to use it in the classroom?
Anyone can write and blogging will support that statement with ease:)
ELL TEACHER PROS
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