I want to restrict viewing and use of our class blog to students. I would like to have each student have an id such as 6715Billy and a password. All the blogsites I have seen require users to have email addresses, and I want to stay away from email.
Ron, Our blog, A Really Different Place, is 3+ years old and we have had over 90,000 unique visits! That's a heck of a lot of reading, writing and reflecting. The site was made with Drupal (open source) and is privatedly served. It can be as open or as closed as you want (IMHO too 'closed' kinds defeats the purpose) and kids do not have to have email addresses. The learning curve is higher than a ready-made solution like Edublogs, but there are no ads and it is as safe as you need it to be. Blog hosting can be as cheap as $5.00 a month and you will need to buy a domain name.
I'm sure our webmaster would help you out if you need help.
Thanks for the ideas: - I already have some wiki set up, am poking around how to use them. As usual, money is an issue, and I don't know if the district will be willing to set up servers. Will look around. I have a ning, am fiddling to learn how to use.
If you use Edublogs, which is a terrific hosting site and one that I use, you can create gmail hacks for your students. You set your students up with a username and a password. All email comes to you due to the gmail hack.
Thanks Amy. I have bought Edublogs supporter out of my own pocket. Would like to see each student with their own blog --- it gets a bit complicated tracking everything when 25 students are posting to one blog.
You can use SchoolBlogs from ePals. You would "need" email addresses so that students could sign on with a unique name and password. You can get the email also through ePals, signing up for SchoolMail. Both of these are free.
You could set the student email so that no messages would "get out" if that was your goal. (There are teacher monitoring functions in ePals. Use Level 1 to stop all communication at your desk. Then you would need to delete weekly, depending on how much students write, even knowing that you have disabled their ability to actually send/receive email.)
You an also set the ePals SchoolBlog so that only certain email addresses can have access. If you wanted your students and their parents to have access, you can determine which email addresses have access, and no one else!
Some teachers want to have a "twin blog" where your students and those in another class are the only ones who can view the postings.
Good luck with implementing your ideas!
Ron, I wasn't happy with epals so today I set up gmail (for students). Since I have a website http://adifferentplace.org I was able to open up 50 email accounts with firstname.lastname@example.org. Pretty cool.
Ron, I mainly need student email at this point to get authorization codes for web applications and when I tried it with epals the emails never arrived. (are outside addresses blocked?) I'm having trouble with the gmail accounts, too. For the most part I don't have a clue what I'm doing to get the thing set up through my domain name so I've sent all the gmail help to my server provider and hopefully they will figure it out. I was able to get the email address email@example.com and able to set up the accounts just fine, I just can't send and recieve mail--which is a bit of a problem!!