You don’t have to be a “post some silly movie or photo or rant” every day blogger to be effective. When my RSS Reader lights up with a new post from Gardner Campbell, I drop what I am doing to go read. If you are an educator interested in blogging, wiki, web tools for learning, especially (but not exclusively) higher education, stop reading my drivel now and head over to Dr Glu.
When he claims to be dashing off scattered thoughts, they are more fluid, meaningful, and well constructed than my most planned writing. That’s one aspect of blogging– if can write really well (not just punctuation or knowing which prepositions are proper in what parts of a sentence– no I mean if you can write in a way that flows like music or poetry… who this pareethetical is way too long and obvioulsy I am not in that category), you can have a huge impact on others without blogging every nuance of your day.
Anyhow, the whole reason for writing this on a Saturday when I should be outside is his post today outlining some of his strategies for having his students blog. On the difference between blogging as an assignment and a requirement:
None of those ideas is in any way unique to me. To name but one obvious influence, there’s the way Barbara Ganley talks about and dwells within blogs in her teaching… But even here (and I think Barbara would agree) the trick is to bring a version of the blogosphere itself into the use of blogs in the classroom. Otherwise, it’s new wine in old bottles. Students will rightly view blogging as merely (insert traditional assignment here) by other means.
I suppose if students are not a little confused about blogging at first, they’re not really on the road to grokking it.
Can you ever imagine your English prof talking about “grokking”? And using it in a manner that he is not false borrowing the words of another generation?
So when I talk to my students about blogging, I try very hard to emphasize how they’re likely to experience both community (tighter bonds with their fellow learners in the course of study) and culture (participation in the greater blogosphere, with unpredictable and often lovely results). Fractal returns, spiraling in and out depending on where one is looking at the time.
Maybe its me, but Dr Glu makes music with words (isn’t that the thingie they call “poetry”?). And my favorite…
Blogs are hydroponic farms for heuristics, hypothesis-generation, metacognition that continually moves out to other metacognizers and back to one’s own reflection.
Thanks for all you do, Dr Glu, from your Arizona fan club.