Thursday, September 01, 2011

Six Reasons Why Kids Should Know How to Blog

I've been reading an article posted by Jenny Luca for the "Mind/Shift: How we will learn" web site about Six Reasons Why Kids Should Know How to Blog. She writes that "kids need to have an understanding of what it means to be a responsible digital citizen". Here are her six reasons:
  1. Creating positive digital footprints
  2. Communicating with digital tools
  3. Transparency for parents and family
  4. New ways of thinking about web tools
  5. Effective digital citizenship
  6. Pride in their work
Standing out for me are two of the above reasons. First - a positive digital footprint. Luca makes the point that soon "it will be the norm for these students to be Googled when they begin to look for jobs". Do you really want that picture your friend took on their camera phone of you picking your nose on-line? Everybody has a "personal brand" that is now more visible than before. A blog can help to make your brand more positive. Secondly, by engaging in "effective digital citizenship", young people can create a digital collection of their work (an ePortfolio) - it makes sense and is important to their future lives. Somewhere in the USA right now there is a teenager on Facebook who will in the future become President of the United States - what is she/he posting right now?

Image link to
Many schools use blogs in many innovative ways to enhance student learning - for example see the excellent book by Will Richardson - (Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts, and Other Powerful Web Tools for Classrooms). So I am all in favour of young people taking up blogging - Richardson is his book points out that most people make more of an effort to write carefully as it is a form of publishing. People will even check for grammar and typos, and will also think carefully before they write. Richardson also points out that in education - teachers should blog as well as students to "show students that it is something of value and too model appropriate ways of doing it (blogging)".

I love blogging!

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