Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Class Shared Writing Blog

Blogging is such a great tool to use to encourage your writers. This year I created a 100WC Blog (see previous post if you aren't sure about 100WC) where all of my students are authors and able to add their writing. I was worried they would be able to edit each others posts but thankfully they do not have access to each others writing.

A huge benefit of having all students writing on one blog is so they have easy access to each other's writing to give feedback. Parents can also easily see their students writing and it is also all in one place for the teacher to access.

To add multiple authors in blogger:

1. Click on settings in blogger.

2. Under BASIC scroll down and you will get to PERMISSIONS. Here you will see yourself as the ADMIN and under that there is an +ADD AUTHORS button. Click on this and add your students.

3. Blogger has made it easy for you to do this and you can choose from your contacts. Once your students accept the invite they will be authors to the blog. Make sure you keep them as authors and do not make them admin. Doing this will enable them to make changes to the blog and change other students work.

The final thing you will need to do is teach the students how to add labels and ensure you enable labels on the blog. Every time students put up a piece of writing they need to put their name as a label. This makes it easy for me, other students and parents to find the piece of writing from specific students. I also get my students to give their writing a title using their name first.

This term each student will be getting a class list. They will start at their name and then work their way down making comments and ticking them off on that once they have commented for that student. They will need to do 5 comments a week - this means every student should get 5 comments a week. The following week they will do the next 5 students on their list and so on.

If you have not seen my post on how to create a comment template click here as this makes sure the students follow a structure when giving feedback. Without this my students would write comments like, cool!! nice writing!!! This has really helped with the quality of comments they give each other now.

Monday, 2 October 2017

100WC - Improve Students Writing

Finally it is holiday time and I can share some of the things that have worked well in class for me over the term.

If you have not seen the 100 Word Challenge website I suggest you check it out. This is run by the amazing Julia Skinner (@TheHeadOffice) and is a weekly writing challenge for students.

Students are given a motivation - this could be a picture, part of a sentence, or a few words - at the start of the week to help them write a 100 word piece of writing. That is it - 100 words! It is great to get my boys writing as you can do so much teaching with 100 words and it doesn't take them long. Students then upload the piece of writing to their blog - or class blog (this will be my next blog post) and then add the link to the 100WC website.

From this link other teachers and students can see it and your students will get feedback from people around the world. Each week their is a SHOWCASE and this highlights the best pieces of writing. Here is a piece of writing from a girl in my class that was 'showcased' and from that I got many tweets from educators around the world praising the student. I shared these with the student and it made her term!

There is also a twitter chat each week and you are now able to join 'Hubs', although I have not done this yet. Joining a hub puts you in contact with several other classes around the world and then you can comment on each other's writing.