Blogging 101

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Information about Blogging 101

Published on October 11, 2007

Author: TechGuy


Blogging 101:  Blogging 101 a presentation by Patrick Douglas Crispen Our Goals:  Our Goals Learn what blogs are and see how they work Create our own blog at Google’s Discover some ways to integrate blogging activities into our curriculum Find some additional blog resources DO ALL OF THIS IN ENGLISH! What are your favorite blogs?:  What are your favorite blogs? Part One: Blogs:  Part One: Blogs What they are and how they work. What is a blog?:  What is a blog? A weblog, or simply a “blog,” is a web application which contains periodic, reverse chronologically ordered posts on a common webpage. Blogs can be used as a Personal journal or diary. Class project page. Bookmarks or links page. Etc. Common blog features:  Common blog features Headlines Time stamps Permanent links [or “permalinks”] Categories Searches RSS feeds COMMENTS Why blogs are cool:  Why blogs are cool They’re web-based. There’s no client software to download and learn. You can update your blog from any Internet-connected computer. They’re absurdly easy to use. You DON’T have to know or use HTML. You DON’T have to know or use FTP. They’re not solitary. The community of blogs and bloggers make up a vast social network. Blogs v. Wikis:  Blogs v. Wikis Objective Blogs are a way to share personal information, a way for the owner(s) to express themselves to their target audience. Wikis are a means of sharing and editing data [ideas, text, photographs] for the creation of collaborative knowledge. Content creation and control Blog content creation and control falls to the owner. Wiki content creation and control falls to the audience [although there is an administrator.] Definitions:  Definitions Blog: A web log. Blogger: Someone who creates and maintains a blog. Blogging: The process of creating and maintaining a web log. Blogsphere/Blogosphere: The totality of blogs; a community or social network of blogs. Blogroll: A list of a blogger’s favorite blogs, usually placed on the side of that blogger’s blog. Part Two: Blogger:  Part Two: Blogger Setting Up Your First Blog:  Setting Up Your First Blog Go to Free blog hosting site run by Google Click on the orange “Create Your Blog Now” arrow to get started. 1. Create an Account:  1. Create an Account Choose a user name. You’ll use this name to sign in when you return. Enter a password. Key in a display name. This is the name that will be used to sign your blog posts. Key in your email address. Accept the terms of service. Click on the orange “Continue” button. 2. Name Your Blog:  2. Name Your Blog Key in your blog’s title. Key in your blog’s URL. Key in the “captcha” word. Captcha is the squiggly “completely automated public Turing test to tell computers and humans apart” word that appears on the page. Click on the orange “Continue” arrow. 3. Choose a Template:  3. Choose a Template Choose a template. You can always change your template later. Click on the orange “Continue” arrow. 4. Celebrate:  4. Celebrate That’s it. No, really. That’s it. Click on the orange “Start Posting” arrow to start your first post. Create a Post:  Create a Post Creating a post is a lot like composing an email message. Key in the post’s title. Then key in the post’s text. Formatting Your Post’s Text:  Formatting Your Post’s Text Formatting your post’s text is much like formatting text in Microsoft Word or Outlook. You can add pictures, change fonts, add hyperlinks, check your spelling, and much more. Post Your Post:  Post Your Post Scroll down and choose if you want to allow people to post comments to your post. Then click on the orange “Publish Post” button. Now What?:  Now What? That’s it. You’re done. To view your “finished” blog, Click on the “View Blog” link or tab. Point your web browser to your blogspot address. Our “Finished” Blog:  Our “Finished” Blog Coming Back for More:  Coming Back for More Remember: = where you make changes to your blog. = where you view your finished blog. The next time you return to, key in your username and password. What’s Next?:  What’s Next? Click on the name of your blog to see a list of every post you’ve made. Click on the green plus sign icon to create a new post. Click on the blue gear icon to change your blog’s settings. For more information, visit Part Three: Blogging in the Classroom:  Part Three: Blogging in the Classroom Ways to integrate blogging activities into your curriculum Blogs and ISTE NETS·S:  Blogs and ISTE NETS·S ISTE NETS’ technology foundation standards for students: Basic operations and concepts Social, ethical, and human issues Technology productivity tools Technology communications tools Technology research tools Technology problem-solving and decision-making tools Source: “Best Bets for Classroom Blogging”:  “Best Bets for Classroom Blogging” Ask your students to Reflect on their reading or classroom discussions. Investigate topics online and then report on their research. Record group progress on a project. Talk about shared classroom experiences. Copy and paste thought-provoking quotes from other blogs, and then offer their own thoughts on the topic. Invite professional writers to edit their blogs, or provide feedback. Source: Blog = Journal?:  Blog = Journal? Blogs are just online versions of paper-based journals, right? WRONG! Done well, blogs assignments give your students An audience. A purpose for writing [beyond the grade.] Legitimate peripheral participation in a topic-related community of practice. If your assignment is just “write something, post it, and I’ll grade it,” skip the blog and give the students some college ruled paper. Example 1: Blog Groups:  Example 1: Blog Groups Divide your students into “blog groups" according to their interests (national politics, entertainment, sports, technology, etc.) Assignment: Write a weekly journal that relates to the blog group’s topic. Let your students create their own rubrics. The groups collectively decide guidelines for each post's content, style, and length. This promotes student ownership and stronger engagement. Source: Example 1 (Cont’d): Blog Groups:  Example 1 (Cont’d): Blog Groups Additional assignment: Each blog group should create a blog roll. Identify other blogs whose focus is related to your group’s topic. “Discourse norming” Source: Example 2: Personal Journals:  Example 2: Personal Journals Give each student a personal blog. Assignment: Post reflections about your development in the course. Responses Questions Thoughts about the week's reading or activity Source: Example 2 (Cont’d): Journals:  Example 2 (Cont’d): Journals Start each class by reading from selected journals to generate discussion. “Students better understand their rhetorical purposes for writing when they envision their writing within a real context. This context—the sense of having an audience who want to engage with the writer's ideas—also helps to create a rhetorical purpose for writing (beyond just fulfilling an assignment).” Source: Part Four: The Next Step:  Part Four: The Next Step Blogger is a great place to start, but there are many more resources out there. Some popular blog hosts:  Some popular blog hosts I recommend Blogger [] as good starting point. Other popular blog hosts include: TypePad [] LiveJournal [] AOL Hometown [] For a canonical list of blog hosts, check out Blogging server software:  Blogging server software The 800 pound gorilla in the server-side blog software market is MovableType [] Teacher/Single classroom: $39.95 300 enrolled students: $299.95 1,000 enrolled students: $699.95 >1,000 enrolled students: $999.95 Multi-school and district licenses are available. For more information:  For more information Check out Darlene Fichter’s “Blogging Basics” PowerPoint presentation at For even more information, check out Molly Holzschlag’s three-and-a-half hour “Learning Blogger” video tutorial at $29.95 on CD $25 a month to access all of’s 100+ tutorials. FULL DISCLOSURE: I am a author. Also visit and for what’s currently popular in the blog world. That’s all, folks!:  That’s all, folks!

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