This week I set up the last few things before I shared my Grade 2 class blog with my students, their parents and the world.
Last week I had contacted Kathy Cassidy, she is a teacher in my school division and is quite well known in regards to digital literacy and blogging with young students. I asked for some advice with using Edublogs with 7 year olds. I had asked her if the Prairie South technology forms cover classroom blog consent and she said they have covered her for the past 12 years! I attached these forms( Technology permission forms) to remind my students families what they gave consent to when their child first enrolled. They are very comprehensive and all of my families have given consent to each area on the form. I really like the first two paragraphs of the form where it clearly states that many classrooms use blogs, wikis and classroom pages to enhance student learning. It also states “the research is very clear that sharing appropriate photos and work is not a danger to students, but in fact servers as a powerful motivator and learning opportunity” (Prairie South School Division).
Kathy also informed me that in her 12 years of blogging with young children, she has had no opposed to their child blogging and she has only had to use a pseudonym twice. Kathy is interested in connecting with my class and I look forward to this!
Early this week I send home an introduction email to my students families about our blog. I attached this letter (Blog Intro), and the Prairie South “Sharing Successes while protecting student privacy forms” to inform parents that we will be blogging soon! We had one family comment on our blog that night! I decided not to send an additional blogging permission form home. If I had any resistance I decided to handle it as needed.
I introduced my students to our blog the same day. They were very excited! Many of them said they couldn’t wait to get on and write their first post. I showed them Mrs. Cassidy’s blog to show them an example of what we would be doing.
Something that took me a bit longer than expect this week was creating my students blog log in cards. Each student needed a card with their username and passwork. My students already have passwords for their basic computer login, mathletics and RazKids and here was I was giving them one more username and password to remember! I decided to keep things simple and make their mathletics passwords and blog passwords the same. When I announced the passwords would be the same, one little boy proudly annouced “I don’t even need my new yellow card then! I know my password so good already!”
I was feeling pretty nervous the day before blogging! Have any others shared my fear?!