Ewan has invited me to be part of the Communicate.06 ICT organised by Scottish CILT, in Stirling. I am going to be talking about podcasting and blogging with a bunch of other folk I am very keen to meet.

I asked about preparing and Ewan told me just to post stuff here instead of making a preparation. I must admit this made me worry a bit. I like making presentations distracting myself from the problem of what to say by messing with the tech (I use SuperCard, flash or html rather than powerpoint so that I can get maximum distraction). This is a bit like using podcasting as stealth education the children do not realise that they are doing language work, they are having too much fun.

Anyway this is the first post for Communicate.06.

At School on Friday’s I am released from my class to do ICT stuff around the school, podcasting, digital video, blogging. This is a wonderful opportunity. I usually do a class blog entry from a couple of classes, using a whiteboard and treating it as a bit of shared writing. The idea being to slowly introduce children and staff to blogging. Already one members of staff is posting with her class independently.

Today I was blogging for the first time with one of our primary fours.

We started with some of the children taking photos of some art work on the wall in there classroom choosing one on the white board and cropping it a bit. (I don’t expect 8 years olds to pick this up too quickly but, it is more fun and cpd for the class teacher.)

We uploaded the picture to the blog, had a quick word about passwords and the responsibility of representing their school worldwide and did a bit of shared writing: Twin Castles.

So far so good, the children enjoyed themselves, were introduced to digital cameras, blogs and there was lots of participation in the writing.

At the end of the day I was in primary five: blogging about ‘How to write a setting’.

At about 2 minutes to home-time we finished and posted the entry. A new comment caught my eye, Anita from Slovenia had commented on the Twin Castles entry.

We had a quick read, got quite excited, and I popped over to primary four to share with them; they were nearly as excited as me;-)

Half an hour after school I opened the entry again, to print a copy, and Stephanie from Primary four had posted a thank you comment to Anita.

Some thoughts:

  • Stephanie has really got the idea about blogging and she is eight.
  • The echos from this, finding Slovenia on the map, increasing the children’s sense of their location and place in the world and connection to the rest of it, the pleasure and pride of a teacher from another country asking if she can use the children’s idea.
  • Anita wrote to primary 4, giving them the ownership and connection.

I am not saying that blogging is the be-all and end-all of teaching and learning, but the ripples set up by one half hour present a lot of opportunities.

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