HD_Links: Classroom Blogs

The blog is still maybe the most usable and versatile online, classroom tool. Many eMINTS teachers are experiencing training right now on such communication tools. The only issue is that it is hard to find great examples of classroom blogs on which to base one’s own blog.
Look no further than the three lists below. Each list includes a wide range of blogs teachers can mine for ideas as to how to go about implementing their own classroom blogs. Keep in mind that some of the blogs on these lists are more writing exercises for the teachers rather than their students. Also, some of the blogs listed are a bit out of date. Either way, one should be able to find solid examples of classroom blogging that fits every classroom need.

  • Sue Waters, aka The Edublogger, has a rather comprehensive list of classroom blogs on Edublogs. The blogs are conveniently organized by grade level and/or subject area. One will find that her examples have a rather international feel as they cover several continents and countries.
  • SupportBlogging.com provides an enormous list of educational blogs, but their list of classroom blogs is hard to top. There are even classroom podcasts and individual teacher blogs as you scroll down.
  • Making Teachers Nerdy is a third long list of educational blogs. Included are some fine examples of classroom blogs, but I’m sure one can find something for nearly every educational focus.

What are some classroom blogs you have found? Does your class have a blog you’d like to share?

Update: eIS Carmen Marty collected the following list for her teachers. Thanks, Carmen! http://elasticthinking.weebly.com/creating-a-classroom-blog.html

Zac Early is an avid blogger and instructional specialist for the eMINTS National Center.

HD Links: Blogs You Should Be Reading

Networked Teaching & Learning does not have a blogroll, but we do read our fair share of blogs. The following is a list of blogs you need to check out and add to your RSS reader…

Weblogg-ed is written by Will Richardson, one of the foremost experts in 21st Century teaching and learning.

eMINTS instructional specialist Brooke Higgins provides some great tips and hints in her blog, Higgins Help.

Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day (for Teaching ELL, ESL, and EFL) is one of the most comprehensive resource blogs for almost any topic. That and Larry updates his posts regularly.

For those looking for a higher level take on the real world applications of high school math, check out dy/dan. High school Math teacher Dan Meyer breaks down some real world applications of several mathematical ideas that’s above my head some days, but a great read anyway.

Teach Paperless, brainchild of Shelly Blake-Plock, carries on the discussion of how we can teach students while integrating technology and social networks without killing too many trees.

Of course, there are many more great blogs written by educators like you. What are some of your favorite blogs? What are you reading right now? Please share in the comments.

Zac Early is an instructional specialist with the eMINTS National Center.

As Easy as Reading an Email – RSS in Outlook 2007

In these times of budget cuts, when teachers are being told there is no $ available for PD, they are beginning to depend on their PLN’s more important than ever. It is amazing how many teachers are reading blogs these days and even more amazing at how many are just now learning about the opportunities out there to learn from a global PLN.

Made in Wordle

At one of the last meetings with our training cohort, we talked about “what are” and “how to build PLN’s” (professional/personal learning networks). I shared how following blogs from other educators/experts in the field using Google Reader to subscribe to those blogs, can put them in charge of building their own capacities as eMINTS teachers. Google Reader is a great RSS aggregator but for those that forget to go to Google Reader another tool may work better…that would be your trusty Microsoft Outlook 2007……

If you haven’t notice (or didn’t know what it was) a folder called “RSS Feeds” with the little orange RSS image on top, can be found under your “Inbox” folder in Outlook 2007. It probably has a plus sign next to it and if you select it you will see an explanation on the right of what RSS is and how it can be of use to you. If you click the plus to the left of the folder you might notice it already has some subscriptions set up for you to some Microsoft Blogs. To see how to set up your own subscriptions check out this video from The Ideal Consultant and in 3 minutes he will get your RSS folder up and running and keeping you up-to-date with the newest content on the web. Now checking your blogs will be as simple as checking your email.

Be warned – the drawback to using Outlook is that when you don’t have access to your email you will also not have access to your blog subscriptions so decide what the best tool for you is and get started.

Some blogs we suggest you follow:
The Cool Cat Teacher Blog – http://coolcatteacher.blogspot.com/
The Clever Sheep – http://thecleversheep.blogspot.com/
Teachers Love SMART Boards – http://www.teacherslovesmartboards.com/
Weblogg-ed – http://weblogg-ed.com/
Suppl_eMINTS – http://supplemint.edublogs.org/

*for those using Google Reader and are loving it, they offer a Google Reader Help Page just for you with tips on getting started to formatting your reader and everything in between.

We would love to know what blogs you follow so leave a comment :) and let us know.

Brooke Higgins is an instructional specialist with the eMINTS National Center. You can visit her site here or read her blog, Higgins’ Helpful Hints.