Teaching to Learn, Learning to Teach

Thursday, November 09, 2006

It's parent-teacher conference week at my school, and as always, I am looking for interesting ways for parents/teachers/students to stay connected when I begin teaching.

I came across a blog by Anne Davis, suggesting that parents really get involved in commenting on their children's blogs. Anne Davis showed an example of a blog where a parent had wrote on her son's blog, and her comments were very positive and thoughtful. In a world where papers don't always make it home and progress reports get lost in the bottomless pit of student bookbags, I think having student work online and parent posting is a great way to encourage invovlement from the home.

In addition, in my special populations class, we were learning a lot about grading, and this blog triggered my thinking about the importance of parent as well as teacher observation of student progress. To me, grading is a grey area that I still feel like I don't know enough about. However, I do know that nothing causes more of an uproar then a parent who finds out that their child made a bad grade on his or her report card. I can almost hear the phone ringing, "Why didn't you tell me my child was failing? I never saw any of his bad grades?!" With a blog that showcases student work and parents having the opportunity to observe it, comment on it, or praise it, this problem is eliminated. Once again, three cheers for blogging!

Are parents afraid to step into the blogosphere? Maybe yes, maybe not. However, if I were a parent, I would find it refreshing to have a way to see what my child is doing everyday and have a way to be a part of it.


At 10:10 AM, Blogger Anne Davis said...

Hi Rachel,
I'd like to invite you to take a look at this post and see my vision for blogging in classrooms. Read the bottom part, "Picture tomorrow's schools." Even if you could not get them to a computer each day, they could do the writing in classrooms and then post weekly or whatever. I also like keeping the blog spaces free of grading but rather view it as a community space where we learn, experiment, and share our journey of learning. What do you think?

I am so impressed with your thoughtful blogging.

At 7:50 AM, Blogger Anne Davis said...

Oops! It would help if I gave you the link, right? :-)


At 8:18 PM, Blogger Rachel Previs said...

I love Anne's vision for the future! What I love most is that writing in a blog allows individual expression to shine through; something that often gets lost in the midst of standardization. I love that even the teachers and administrators would blog; it would be great for students to see the value of writing among faculty at the school. Thanks for your ideas and comments Anne!


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