Tuesday, July 29, 2008


I've become more and more interested in Web2.0 applications and how they can be used with students. One of the newer, more interesting application is microblogging. So you've read my blog, now check out my microblog - Teachntech00. Right now there are 2 major ones - Twitter and Plurk. Basically you can see and write about simple, small things you may be doing. Maybe you want everyone to know you are looking at a specific site, video, or blog. Or maybe you just want everyone to know you just ate Fruit Loops for breakfast. You can put whatever you want - as long as it's less than 140 characters.

So how could this be used with students. My first thought would be, since profiles can be private (gotta think about those privacy laws), parents or grandparents could be the only ones to view the feed. Then students could microblog about their day. One of the new trends in teaching is to have students understand what they are doing, and be able to explain it. So as a teacher you could have the student write a sentence about what reading activity they are doing, or what kind of math problems they are working on. Then it could be put online and the parents could see what a child did all day. No more wondering if the teacher forgot something in the notebook, or calling because the teacher forgot to write (guilty as charged).

With the amount of computers that are in classrooms these days, schools with laptops and such it becomes a minor issue to have students post this info. And as a student gets older Twitter accepts posts from cell phones, or just as easily from the IPhone, this could be an age appropriate, acceptable way to get writing samples from a student. Think about how natural this is, a student texting, that's the way all students want to communicate right now.

There are issues to work out with this technology - making sure things stay private, cell phones in school (yeesh), and just making sure it gets done, but I think it's something I'm going to be exploring. Give me some thoughts, let me know what you think.