I really like the good thinking shown by Tyr in Bud’s blogging group. You need to read the whole post but Tyr throws out these thoughts…..

I may be misunderestimating the younger generations, but I do feel that weblogging would not be properly utilized until they have matured more. Additionally, even if it was properly described and explained, would a student at the age of ten or eleven be able to grasp the concept of how powerful ‘blogging’ is? I’m just throwing out ideas here, I want to know what others think.

followed by….

If this tool is introduced early enough perhaps it could change the way High School and higher education is dealt with, but on the other hand, if it is introduced too early or too late the potential benefits may not be seen and this could become just as mundane as writing 20 minutes on a prompt with no basis in reality.

Moe entered the conversation by responding to Tyr’s post…..

The thougnt of an eleven year old using the internet, and blogging in such a way does seem somewhat ridiculous. Yet, I do know several young people (ages 11-13) who know html programming, and how to use the internet very well. It seems as time progresses, so does the human race. People are becoming more computer saavy at a younger age. Maybe this is, because they are introduced to computers, and technology at a younger age as well. This is only a theory, please let me know what you think.

Now I have to tell you about an in-class conversation with my fifth graders last week. We were discussing the use of blogging in schools. One of my students chimed in with the thought that perhaps blogging would not be appropriate for teenagers in high schools because they were not being responsible about what they were writing. That started a good conversation on the importance of not labeling groups or even the journaling done by some groups. It opened the door for some great conversations about what you write for the world to view. I don’t think these type of conversations can start too early for our students. The class concluded that not ALL teenagers should be banned from blogging because of some blogs that did not fit the bill of what they considered “good” educational use. We talked about good educational use of blogs and how they really could be role models for that very thing.I had to chuckle when reading Tyr and Moe’s posts because I could visualize my students reactions. It also took me back to Dane, a student in my first blogging project. When asked if an outsider visited your blog, what would you hope he or she would think about it. Dane responded quite eloquently, “I would hope they would think of children as being capable of more than they had first anticipated.” Now Tyr responded to Moe’s post with some more good thinking.

Moe, thanks for reading my blog and giving me such a prompt response. Now, I don’t feel that 11 year olds should not be allowed to use this technology I just don’t know if they would be mentally able to comprehend just what this is. Adults and even more teenagers are incapable of ‘blogging’ properly, so how could an eleven year old conceivably use it properly? I’m not saying that they couldn’t, I just don’t necessarily see how it would be utilized. If high school students could potentially misuse this by being immature, wouldn’t the probability be that much higher for an elementary student to do the same?

These are the beginnings of some good conversations. So I say to Bud’s students. Keep letting us hear your voices. They’re important and we all can learn together.

On a recent post called Simple Beginnings I wrote the following:

My vision for classroom blogging is simple. Use it as a tool in the classroom to ensure that the students and the teacher are talking, reading, and writing frequently about how and what they are learning and thinking. Get them to explore their thinking and the teacher can do the same. Get them to interact with others through comments. Encourage others outside the classroom to join in on the conversations. Value the students’ ideas by making them feel safe to share real thoughts and feelings so discussions can be meaningful. The teacher sets parameters to lead students toward building a community of learners who respect and encourage each other. They can learn to disagree agreeably. They can develop a good standard for learning on the web. They will be writing about the content they are learning. They will be thinking about it. Best of all, they will be writing about it. Writing to learn!Let’s focus on these unique writing spaces that foster a new type of learning and writing space that reaches way out beyond our classroom walls. All the voices need to be heard!

Also, here are a couple of posts that may clarify the “blogging” going on with my elementary students:

Who Says Elementary Students Can’t Blog?

Aw, my brain hurts!