This site has a blog comparison chart.
The three platforms I looked at are Blogger, WordPress, and Edublogs. I don’t think a person would go wrong with any of these. None of them require technical knowledge. They all have the ability to support multiple authors, can be made private, and be ad-free. Student accounts can’t be managed through WordPress, but they can be with the other two. WordPress is also the only one that can’t support embedded media from a third party. Edublog doesn’t require users to be 13 or over as the other two do. The only other difference mentioned in this article is that Edublog offers few themes than the other two. None of these differences seem very important, so it appears that users could be satisfied with whichever platform they picked.
There are several helpful sites about educational blogging, and I chose this one to focus on: http://thetechyteacher.com/blogging-best-practices-for-teachers-and-students/ When having students blog, it’s important to set guidelines for them before they begin. They should be reminded not to put any private information on their blog that they don’t want to be made public. Educators should have a zero tolerance policy for bullying or anything else that would not be allowed in school. Students also should be taught what kind of information is appropriate on their claStudents are often unaware of the public nature of the things they post. Also, people (and not just students) sometimes feel free to say/write things they wouldn’t share in person. It’s important to remind students to show respect for one another and to support each other’s posts so that all students feel safe in posting their ideas.on the classsroom blog.
I began my search by starting with the suggested site “Edublog Awards,” and, to be honest, that site was not very helpful. I did see Edutopia listed (www.edutopia.org). I get postings from this blog on my facebook page and have found many of the articles very helpful. The site also includes instructional videos. This is a blog written by educators for educators and includes topics of common concern such as classroom management, common core, testing, how to set up a classroom, etc. I then typed “Science blogs” in google and came up with a site called “Top 50 Science Teacher Blogs.” I found two that would be extremely beneficial to me: Action-Reaction (fnoschese.wordpress,com) and Sciencefix.com. Action-Reaction has a lot of ideas for teaching physics. I’ll be teaching Introduction to Physics for the first time next year, so this site may come in handy. Sciencefix.com has a description and pictures of over 120 demonstrations/experiments which could be done in the classroom. I couldn’t find a search feature, but if I had time to go through and write down all the experiments which are demonstrated, this could be a valuable site too. I already saw a few that would be fun to do next year, and most of them seem to use household items. I also viewed a blog called positivityblog.com. It had some pretty interesting articles! Even though it isn’t written specifically for teachers (although I did find it through a teacher’s blog), I read through a few helpful articles. Teachers can always use a boost of positivity!
When I first began this quest, I thought I was looking for examples of ways teachers have used blogs with their students. But, all the ones I viewed consisted of teachers sharing ideas or thoughts with other teachers. Blogs can be used to enhance teaching by showing new and interesting ways to teach concepts. The most useful feature is some kind of index or search button so specific topics can be found. In the future, I’ll be using blogs a lot to find ideas to add interest to my lessons.