I have been struggling a little bit with my last two posts. The title of our blog after all is Rethinking Media Centers and one post was about how I haven’t been writing and the other was about a doctor’s appointment. I am not sure I am writing what I should be writing.
Shouldn’t I have started by introducing myself as a Media Specialist, who has had many careers that include, corporate trainer, manager, educational toy store owner, and office assistant? Shouldn’t I have mentioned that I am married and my husband and I have 4 grown children and 3 tiny dogs. Shouldn’t I have mentioned that about 5 years ago I when my youngest was off to college, I went back and got my Master’s in Library Media. Shouldn’t I have talked about my goals for the media center?
I think the answer to all of these questions is “yes,” but that is not what was in my heart to write about at the time. There is no doubt that I was influenced by Ruth Ayres’ blog posts. She writes about what is in her heart. I wanted to express myself that way, too. And I think I am okay with that for 2 reasons. One reason is that I want to talk about what is real and authentic with people through the blog and sharing this way is a better way to connect with people.
The other reason is more pragmatic. Second graders at my school started blogging, using KidBlog, in the Media Center last week. We talked about rules and how they need to show their best selves and be careful about word choice. I tried to guide them to write only about school related topics, but they had other ideas. On our snow day, Kaia figured out how to post a picture of a painting (see above) that she made by filling egg shells with paint and throwing them on the canvas. Virkram and Cooper wrote a blog titled, Mechanics Down to the Bare Bones. Lucas wrote about a measuring project that they were doing in class. Eli wrote about his favorite NBA team. There was so much more. This was in the first week that they were on the blog.
Students also, responded to posts by me. But to be honest, responses to these posts were not as well developed or exciting. I am not sure if they just need more practice responding or if they felt like they had more important things to talk about. Maybe they were trying to get through my “made-up” prompt, so they could write about what they wanted to write about. I am excited that the classroom teachers are starting to use this tool for classwork. I think that if we give them an authentic purpose, they will respond in ways that we never expected.
I came up with 3 goals for the Second Grade Blog:
- To give students a chance to practice writing and keyboarding skills.
- To have a safe place to practice being good Digital Citizens.
- To provide a platform to introduce them to the 4C’s – Communication, Collaboration, Critical Thinking and Creativity.
If week 1 is any indication, these goals are more likely to be reached by giving them choice. I’ll keep you posted!