What Are Blogs?

A blog is a web log in which a person enters information about whatever topic they choose and others can respond to the topic. It is similar to a journal except others can comment on the entries. A blog is different from a wiki, as individuals can not edit the original entry, they can only comment on it.

CommonCraft video - Blogs in Plain English hosted on dotSUB



http://web2tutorial.wikispaces.com/blogs - This site explains blogging, provides links to blog hosts, provides lists of benefits and concerns as well as links to real world blogs for your viewing pleasure. It also has links to tutorials on using blogs with students and others.
Blogging Basics for the Classroom uses a simple question and answer format to help teachers understand blogs and how they can be used in the classroom.

Will Richardson, an educator from New Jersey, is a very vocal supporter and leader when it comes to using Blogs, Wikis, and other collaborative software with students. You can link to his wiki here for a wealth of information dealing with these Web2.0 tools.
Will Richardson's Wiki

How Can I Use Blogs?

Now blogs come in several flavors:

Mini-blogs

Twitter – This is where people share one liners about what they are doing right now.

Personal blogs

People journal about their daily lives and experiences. Primarily, the only people interested are intimate family and friends of the author with an occasional stranger who stumbles upon the blog and finds it entertaining.


Special Interest Blogs


Professional/Educational Blogs


Professional/Educational blogs provide a wealth of information with the possibility of commenting to share ideas or points of view. However, most people who regularly VIEW professional blogs do not comment.

Classroom Blogs

Teachers are using blogs to engage their students and give them a global voice.



Blogging Website Options

Now that you have some background knowledge for what a blog is and how one can be used, it is time to pick your focus and begin to make your own. There are many, many different blog creation websites available. For our purposes, we are touching on just three; Blogger, Wordpress, and Edmodo. If you have seen a different blog tool that you would like to use, please feel free to use that and let us know so we can add it to our list.

Blogger Tutorial

Basic blogging web service. If you already have a Google account, this may be a good choice for you because it is part of the Google family of web products.

One of the best Blogger tutorial videos can be found on YouTube. Our school system blocks this website. This video was downloaded and reposted due to helpful content. If you are outside our system, check out all of the video help for Blogger at http://www.youtube.com/BloggerHelp .



Wordpress Tutorial

Wordpress is another website that allows you to create your own blog. It boasts a 5 minute setup. It is an alternative to Blogger. Like Blogger, there is a "Dashboard" where you control the way your blog works, add posts, and features to your blog.

Specific help with Wordpress.com (not Wordpress.org) free account and features at their support site here. http://support.wordpress.com/

Edmodo Tutorial

Create a interactive class environment. Create and manage multiple classes online. Post questions and comments to an internal, private blog for each class where students can add their own responses. Each class has a public side of their blogs where the teacher must approve the posts before they show in the public area. Each class can have calendars and file storage areas to allow for more interactivity.

Very helpful directions with pictures can be found here. http://vimeo.com/14047353