Despite that the SLL 2.0 team recommended Blogger, I was a bit disappointed with it the last time I used it. As noted in the Weekly Tips section of the SLL 2.0 blog, the Blogger user interface is not very intuitive. It’s an excellent (free!) resource to be sure, but I already figured out how to use it the last time I did a blog. In the interest of self-discovery, I tried WordPress.
I found WordPress to be a little more user-friendly, but not by much. The different labels and terms threw me for a loop, but I just basically played with it until I got what I wanted. The downside of learning through play, of course, is that it’s time-consuming. I’m glad I’m doing this over the summer when I actually HAVE time, because if I had tried setting up this blog during the school year, it never would have gotten past the “Hello world!” post and the unappealing blue and white theme. With that said, though, I really do like WordPress better than Blogger. The hardest part was figuring out how to get my avatar in the sidebar, instead of just in my posting.
- I know of a few teachers in my district who use blogs to recommend books. In an elementary school, this isn’t as useful when the students have a hard time typing until (and even after) third grade.
- I’ve used blogs for my Lunch Bunch book clubs, but upkeep and getting students to participate was difficult as the school year progressed. For next year, I want to (1) make it a priority, and (2) move the blog discussions to a “real” blog, not the Schoolwires mess that my district offers.
- Blogs for each team science fair project (though maybe wikis would be better?)
- Classroom homework assignments..one blog for whole school, instead of separate teachers’ webpages.
- My plans for this blog are to make it a professional blog for teachers and librarians with tips and hints on using Web 2.0 and other technology in their classroom. I’d like to emphasize free and/or user-friendly tools.