Blog – according to the Oxford dictionary, it is defined as “a personal website or web page on which an individual records opinions, links to other sites, etc. on a regular basis”. Coming from the words ‘web’ and ‘log’, it is essentially a regular post uploaded online.
With the advance of new technology and the Internet, the public has transformed from a consumer (just taking in information, not giving feedback) to a creator or a contributor. User-generated content is rising (Pewinternet), making it possible to people to express their opinions, expand their social networks. And according to a Pewinternet statistic, 14% of users who create content are bloggers.
Naturally, this type of writing has been adopted also in education – in fact, this blog is my coursework for the Digital media platforms and practices module at my university.
As the table shows, 40% of surveyed teachers said that they make students develop and write in websites, wiki and blogs. In the same research 64% of the English/languages educators informed that digital tools have made teaching writing easier than it was before – it shows the way students are thinking and it encourages them to edit their own and their friends’ writing, thus improving their skills through practice.
Also, according to responses by students in this article, many of them would not have an issue turning in a poor paper to their tutor, however, if they know their peers are going to be able to read what they have written online, pupils will do their best. This contributes to the general quality of writing.
Since blogs feature a person’s chosen angle on a topic and their own opinions, children would generally be more interested in reading around the subject – something that cannot always happen with regular essays, hand-written on paper. Keeping a blog will thus be helpful in order for the students to deepen their knowledge on the specific subject and think of creative ways of expanding the content and enhancing the reader-experience with enjoyable varieties of media.
Examples for blogs with creative topics and presentation are of some of my course mates: Ana’s focuses on consumer generated content, Robert’s, whose topic is books and Iulia’s, which centres on travel.