I am looking into the idea of having some of my virtual academy students start blogs, as I believe they are a great way for students to share their thoughts, ideas, etc., as well as connect to others.  How are you using student blogs in your classroom?  What grade levels do you think blogs are the most appropriate for, and what sites are available for this purpose that are free, safe for students, etc.?

I would love to read your thoughts and ideas!  Thanks so much!

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Carole,

If you have read the latest Educational Leadership you will find an article on using blogs to create virtual lit. circles. I have used them as threaded discussions. I always provide a rubric for responses and exemplar responses at each level. Blogs are best suited for middle to high school students. Blogger is a free and safe site- just get parental permission to create a Google/Blogger account.
Carole, I would look at this list I created on what are the best blogging solutions.... http://cyber-kap.blogspot.com/2010/10/top-10-blogging-solutions.html I would recommend Edmodo or Kidblog. Also, it really is up to the individual on what they think is an appropriate age level to start blogging. I've done it w/ 7th graders, but under the right circumstances would go as low as 4th or 5th grade (at least w/ the gifted students).

Good luck!!
Carole, I would love for you to check out my website. My partners and I have developed a new community for teachers and students called StudyBuddyCampus. It is free and it represents our vision of the future for the use of technology in the classroom. Our goal is to revolutionize the delivery of education by combining an interactive game like experience with the latest educational content. We have several teachers and students testing our Beta site at http://www.studybuddycampus.com, and we are constantly releasing new features. Given the topic of your discussion, I thought you might be interesting in taking a look, and if you have the time, we would love to receive feedback from people with your kind of experience.

Best Regards.

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