Blogging can be beneficial in that others can give you insight on a topic that you are not so knowledgeable on. Others can give their opinions to help you out when you are asking for advice on an issue. Blogging can be very helpful when using it for a project for a classroom full of students. There has been studies that show that students writing has improved when writing to an audience of their peers. Blogging can also be a challenge as a communication tool in that perhaps at first you dont have so many people replying to your posts and you would like more feedback. Sometimes the feedback you receive isnt always exactly what you are looking for. At sometimes maybe the students dont always understand the point of posting on blogs as assignments and they aren't learning all that you would have hoped.
Besides the issues of student privacy concerns, I have found blogging to be an amazing way to bridge the gap between home and school. A class blog has allowed discussions to continue even after the school bell has rung. It's a place where parents are able to see all the hard work that we are putting in here at school. It also allows the students to see that parents and other members of the community are taking an active role in each child's education.
I have received nothing but positive feedback from parents, administration, and other members of the community. I look forward to using a blog every year!
I have to agree with Shawn. When I have my first classroom I will definitely have a class blog. This will be my back-up source for class work assigned, homework, and reminders. I will also have a page for parents and invite parent input. This will be my no excuses source, because everything that goes on in the classroom will be included on the blog. Students will be able to make comments regarding assignments and ask for help from me and their fellow students.
Blogging encourages free writing among students and allows them to more openly express their opinions. Also, it gives students access to people and resources around the world they may have been previously limited too. Though, using any kind of online tool like blogs, the teacher will always struggle with monoting the students work and the people posting on the students work. Yes, the sites do offer privacy where comments have to be approved, though with multiple students and websites, I am not sure the teacher could keep up enough in order to keep the class rolling.