Friday, September 30, 2011

That went better than I thought...

My kids finally got started blogging a couple of weeks ago and it went really well!  I used Kidblog and the students found it easy to use and I found them easy to grade.  All three of my classes are using it to post blogs every other week on something they "read."  Read is in quotations because the choices include watching short videos on history or from TED, poetry, art pieces from the National Gallery, or letters from Peace Corp workers.  The first week's entries were pretty good and the second attempt looks even better.  They are required to discuss how it affects their world or themselves, not just summarizing the article.  After a few weeks, I will have them read each other's blogs and comment for a grade, but some are already doing that.  :-)  The best part about this assignment is that it involves NO PAPER....ah, my first "green" assignment. (I evaluate and give them their grades via a private comment.)
I read a really interesting article about a school supplying iPads to all of their students and began dreaming about all of the cool things I could do with that resource.  I'm really hoping by the time my daughter is in high school...a mere five years away...that GCS will be there.  (I have a very vivid imagination where money grows on trees.)  Here's a link to the article "No More Pencils, No More Books: Instead iPads"  The host site, is pretty interesting, so you might want to check it out too.
One of my proudest accomplishments has been recruiting my husband to join Twitter.  He set up an account and started following some of the companies involved in his type of business (machine tools) and loved when his boss went to a trade show and called him with several "updates" that my husband already knew about because he read their Twitter feeds.  
I've found now that I am in the "real" world of full time teaching I don't get to it nearly as often as I did over the summer, but it is handy for killing time at my kids' soccer practices and picking up some fresh ideas.