I created this presentation for Students 2.0. Blogging can be a very powerful tool for young people who want to explore their interests and connect to others with similar bent. All too often I come across student blogs that are set up as class assignments and you can feel a lacklustre involvement with many of them. It’s one of the reasons I don’t get my students writing blogs. I think that blogging is an art, something that is best pursued by people who are passionate about what they are doing, people who write because they love their subject matter and want to share it with others.
That’s the best scenario in my opinion, but I do think there is worth in exposing students to ideas about what can be achieved if you choose to push yourself out there and share your thinking with others. Particularly for kids who have specific interests and don’t realise that you can advance your cause by connecting with the right people.
I visited a school a couple of years ago where students were given the task of putting together a ‘pitch’ to a company about something they were interested in. One student was a go kart racer and had real potential to make his way to the higher ranks where you could eventually become a formula one racing driver. I was very impressed with the effort he put into his ‘pitch’ and the dedication he gave to the task. It mattered to him. I watched the teacher thank him for his efforts, but I couldn’t help but think there was an opportunity wasted at that point. If he had a teacher who understood what blogging can do for people, he could have been encouraged him to start his own and create a profile that may get noticed by those who make decisions. He could have created the digital profile he needed.
What we need in our schools are teachers with skill sets that enable our kids to be exposed to social media tools that will help them take their learning outside of school walls and give them an opportunity to connect with others. My fear is that teachers with the necessary skill sets are few and far between. Hopefully a presentation like the one above will help some teachers relay an understanding to their students.
The Elluminate session was recorded. You can follow this link to listen to me expand on the ideas presented in the slides if you so choose to.