Some Reflections

I think it is about time that I discuss my digital project a little, so here we go.

1.  My Law 30 class blog.  For my digital project, I chose to start a blog for my grade 12 Law class.  The purpose for starting this blog was to:

  • promote dialogue between class members.
  • provide the opportunity to discuss legal and or political issues in a “global forum.”
  • Use blogging as a medium to incorporate and promote literacy, including media.
  • Use blogging as a medium to incorporate technology at a high school level.
  • Learn a new social tool (s)

To date, I constructed the blog site http:\\, and have embedded a few widgets in the sidebars.  I also, changed the theme part way through.  None of this stuff, had I ever done before.  I briefly started a blog a year ago, but have not extended myself like I have with this, or my personal learning blog (http:\\  Even little tools like voki’s and You Tube videos have been embedded.

I thought about having students create their own blogs, but I feel more steps on internet safety and protocol need to be taken first.  The Al Upton issue and my own reservations have caused this.  So far, I have the students commenting on various issues (using nicknames) and their comments are getting better.  I hope to incorporate Voicethread and/or Animoto soon with students.  Maybe something will show before the end of this course!

Since I do not have students creating their own blogs (yet), I have found a new route.  I think the class setup would be enhanced by a wiki space.  This can be used for the online tools portion of the Law course, with the blog used as a discussion forum.  I got this idea from one of my classmates (Dean) and I could see the value of it.  This may to be created before the end of the course.

In retrospect, I now am glad I satrted with just a blog and not the wiki at first.  My first plan was to create a whole online unit for the course.  I would have been swamped!!!  It has taken a while to learn the nuances of blogging, reading classmates blogs, commenting on them and in the Blogosphere.  The number of tools we have learned and now are incorporating also added to the time comittment.  Since I srted with the blog first, I now see future steps pretty clearly.  I do not think I would have if I started with a much larger project.  I think the ‘ol “I should have done this…” thought would have been more prevalent.

Onward and upward.!

    • Laurie
    • April 1st, 2008

    I thought the comments your students wrote about stereotyping were great. They had some good insights and it was evident that they know that stereotyping and racism are alive in their lives. I didn’t comment but I wanted to ask them, “Now that you have identified sterotypical and racist incidents, discuss what you can do to alleviate it.” I wonder if they stop to think about that or simply just go on maintaining the status quo. It’s a tough one.
    Great job on the blog! Wish I were teaching a Law 30 class and then our classes could interact online. You don’t happen to teach grade 8 math do you?

  1. It sounds like you made some good decisions with your final project by not overwhelming yourself with too many new tools at once and in doing that, you have motivated yourself to try something new next time 🙂 Congrats 🙂

    • murcha
    • April 2nd, 2008

    I like your slow and steady approach with online usage. However, online usage whether it be wikis or blogs or other web2.0 tools always presents an element of safety concern. However, whilst in the classroom setting students can learn how to use these tools wisely which will then flow through to their outside school use of these tools. Wikis can be monitored readily when there is just one administrator and invited parties only participating. Our first school blog was a single one, with me as administrator grabbing individual posts by students from their network folders, but as time passed, there were no safety issues or concerns, just amazing learning outcomes and achievements for the students. My confidence in the use of these tools increased and now all our students from grades 4-10 have individual blogs with me as joint administrator. Keep up the good work!

  2. I started with a class blog last year. My students use an online alias and we discuss what type of information we do and do not share with others. This year I’ve added wikis for group projects and find them very easy for myself and the students to use. The Al Upton event made me think about my class blog and how I use it. My parents are very aware of the work we do online but like Al Upton’s class it takes only one parent to raise concerns. It is a bit scary.

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