Teaching, technology, and blogging — Oh my!

Welcome to ENG 350, a course dedicated to teaching writing in secondary schools.  I’m looking forward to learning with you this semester.  I thought I’d kick off this blog by answering two questions that I’d be asking if I were a student in my own class.

Why so much tech?  You’ll notice that we will are going to use lots of technology over the course of this term.  For example we will be creating professional twitter accounts and using a course tag this semester (#BSU350) to tweet about our learning; we’ll create podcasts for our This I Believe essays; you’ll design and teach a grammar-based lesson that you’ll record digitally; we’ll use this site daily in our learning.

Why?

Because if we want our students to navigate a variety of literate environments in the 21st century, we, as teachers, need to practice and play with a wide variety of technological tools!  In this course, I hope to provide you many experiences to do just this — play with technology.  And, I hope that you bring your own knowledge and tools to this playground so that we can all learn together!

What’s this blog for?  Primarily, this blog will serve as a space for us to archive our thinking and learning.  After class session, one student will be responsible for updating the blog with a summary/re-cap of that class session.  This summary will review the activities in which we engaged, and describe major take-aways and learnings from the class meeting.

As a writer, you’ll decide how you best want to represent these things, and together, we’ll negotiate specifics about what gets included. For example, we might want to post pictures of our writing (e.g., of our group work on huddle boards), or key quotes from students/texts.  These summaries may take on  different forms — maybe a found poem from one of our course readings, or maybe something else creative that you come up with.  We’ll also negotiate specifics about assessment of posts together.

Overall, my goal with this blog (and in this course) is to try to model how teachers might play with and technology (I’m no tech expert, folks!), and to provide a space for us to write with and for each other.

Let’s get started.  🙂

-SB

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