Happy students = Happy teacher

Well my Grade 2’s have been blogging for two weeks now and I can happily say the majority of them are loving posting on our class blog.

I must approve every post and comment before it gets posted to our blog, every morning I have students at my desk shouting “Miss Gossard have you checked the blog yet? Can you approve my post? I commented on my friends blogs last night, have you seen it yet?”  I love seeing how excited they are to share their posts with their families, each other and the world.  So far the students have learned how to find our blog, log in, write a post and comment on a classmates post.  It doesn’t sound like much but it has been a lot of work!  Luckily I already have some “blogging experts” in the class who are can write a new post independently and are able to help their peers when I am busy helping another student.

On Thursday I will be teaching the students about an app called Draw and Tell HD.  This is a story telling app that we will use to create our own addition or subtraction stories using pictures, numbers and our voices.   We will create the short video on our school’s ipad’s and then hopefully successfully upload the short clip to each students individual blog.  I have my pre intern starting back on Thursday so I purposely chose to teach this new app when I knew I would have an extra hand in my room helping out! I found this app on Kathy Cassidy’s presentation notes page. Here is a quick tutorial video for this app. I love that students can record their drawing and story and narrate their image.

I had lots of successes this past week! My kids are happy, love blogging and they are excited to learn about new apps. In turn, I am happy that they are enjoying the experiences I am guiding them through!

Successes don’t often come with a few challenges along the way.   This week I am struggling with time.  This is a very busy season for all of us. Report cards are due in two weeks and student led conferences will follow. I am busy with basketball playoffs, catching up on university work, finishing assessments with my students, marking and writing report cards.   I know my students are enjoying blogging, but I am struggling  as to where I can do my teaching towards these new skills.  I already feel I do not have enough Time is tickingtime in my school day to teach math, reading and writing most effectively but now I am adding on blogging skills and teaching new apps.  I am trying to fit blogging into my ELA time and I have now made blogging a center during guided reading. This works well but it doesn’t give me time to explicitly teach and guide my students through the blogging process like I would like.

I am wondering where other teachers are fitting in your learning projects with your classroom? Maybe there is an outcome (besides writing) that I am missing that this can slide right into!



2 thoughts on “Happy students = Happy teacher

  1. I’m glad you shared your challenges with time Danielle. I am in the exact same situation! The last two weeks have been absolutely nuts with juggling report cards and trying to include major project into the day.

    I have my students do journals during Work on Writing in our daily 5 stations but I was finding I was getting the quality I knew my students could produce. This was also because they didn’t have quite enough time during their rotations. I decided to change my plan and now my students all do journals Monday and Friday mornings. On other days during Daily 5 rotations, they spend their Work on Writing time commenting on each others Seesaw posts. Starting this week, we will also use this time to blog. I am going to plan it out that they do a paper copy of their post at the rotation before they go to the Seesaw rotation. It’s my hopes that this will help them be prepared to finish their post in the 20 minutes provided.

    In terms of teaching the blogging concepts, I am trying to just squeeze mini lessons when I have 10 or 15 extra minutes. I’ve also changed my health plan for this month and instead of teaching the Healthy Snacking outcome I am doing a Digital Citizenship unit as a part of the Safety outcome. Do you teach your own Health? Maybe this is an option?

    I also have realized that there is only so much I can get through with my students on our ECI831 timeline. I would like to continue exploring this project until the end of the school year, and not stop when ECI831 is done. I’m working on convincing myself that it’s all about the process and it’s okay if I don’t accomplish as much as I had intended. Learning and exploring takes time!


    1. Thanks so much for your help Erin! I love your idea about having your students do a paper post before they blog. I will do this tomorrow! It should save some time! I don’t do Daily 5 this year, but we do Guided Reading centers, so I try to fit in blogging there!
      Also, great idea teaching Digital Citizenship during health, I can definitely make that happen!
      I will also be continuing our blog until June, I am sure we will both feel a lot more successful near the end of the school year! 🙂


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