Can blogs be beneficial in an elementary/middle/high school setting? How are they being used in these settings? Do you see any problems or concerns with using them in any of these settings? What do schools need to be concerned about? What might parents be concerned about? If the school you work in will allow it, will you use or consider using blogs with your students?
I believe that blogs can be useful in education, but I doubt that I will personally use them. I think that they are more appropriate for older students, such as high-school and college, but not as aplicable to the younger grades. Since I wish to teach first or second grade, I doubt I will ever have my students use them. That being said, here are my thoughts on the uses of blogs, the dangers of blogs, and how they are indeed being used currently.
We were provided with three websites to start our research from that address these issues:
Blogging? It's Elementary, My Dear Watson! - explains what blogs are, and how to get started using them in the classroom, as well as some safety tips.
Log On to a Blog- notes from a teacher on the advantages she noticed in her classroom from blogging, including at the end some other sites about blogging.
Dangers of Blogging - tells how blogging can be dangerous, and gives tips and ideas for staying safe on the internet.
Some teachers use blogs to motivate their students to write their assignments well: after all, anyone in the world might be reading. They have their students write commentaries, reviews, or papers on their blogs. The dangers of blogging is that blogs are often a digital diary or journal, and some students may post things that should be kept more private. A way to overcome this issue would be to have the blog on a setting that the teacher has to give his/her okay for any post to be posted. Another safety issue is cyberstalking, and it is recommended that students do not post personal profiles on the internet. Both of these are concerns that the parents might have, and that the teachers and schools must be sure to address.