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Summer is here and it’s time to (in the words of my students) “dust off my blog” and get back to posting. I am, however, going to start slowly. I asked a couple of my students to be guest bloggers and share their opinions about the blogs we did this past year. Here is the first, who goes by her login name, clsh5a. Enjoy!

I had so much fun blogging during my time as a 5th grader!! I loved it so much, that I made my own blog on a website all by myself!!
Blogging is fun because you get to write about anything you want. The posts on your blog could be about a cool school activity, or maybe just a small little picnic you had that day. Whenever I had a bad day, I would write about it on my blog and I would feel better.
Blogs can also be for commenting on your friend’s blogs. I would always check up on my friend’s blog and comment on any new posts they wrote. It’s fun to comment because sometimes, you could check up on the comment you wrote earlier to see if your friend responded to it. Then, it could be like a little chat as you type another comment to respond to your friend’s and your friend could respond back to that comment, too.

Overall, I had a lot of fun blogging and I’m glad mching introduced blogging to me!

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Well, not literally on the go…yet. In actuality, I’m sitting on my sofa, in my living room testing WordPress for iPhone, a new, FREE app from the App Store and marveling at its ease. Not only can I post, but I can also include photos, as well. This has major implications for educators. For the past two years, we have been trying to maintain a class webpage. It’s all systems go initially, lots of content, lots of media. But, as the year progresses and the plate fills, one of the first things to go is inevitably the webpage. With this app, I can jot off a quick update and post it in a few minutes. No need for a computer. No need to wait until the kids are abed. All I need is some inspiration and my trusty iPhone! Now if I could only add some links, this would be perfect…

Since the inception of this blog, I have been doing lots of reading and listening, thinking and reflecting. Through it all, I feel a sense of discord and unease, but take comfort in the fact that it is a sign of new learning; my newest mentors being the words of Marc Prensky, David Warlick, Will Richardson, and Thomas Friedman, just to name a few. Of course, great teachers such as Dewey, Freire, Gardner, and Montessori are not supplanted, but rather juxtaposed, and their ideas carried forward into the 21st century. I am continually amazed by the connectedness of it all.

And so, you may ask, what does this have to do with the “bibliophile” referenced in the title of this post? Despite the lack of speed with which I post, I have created yet another blog, one specifically for the reading classes, and thus the bibliophiles, I teach, at edublogs.com. Again, an experiment in motivation, in the need for people to have conversation, good conversation, about inspiring words and ideas found within the pages of a book, be they physical or virtual. Perhaps this will allow the student who reads voraciously, to comment as much as he wishes. Perhaps the student who sits quietly, yet thoughtfully, and needs more time to formulate her opinion, will be given that time. Perhaps the relative anonymity (despite an online name that classmates will be able to identify) will create a comfort zone for a student who is afraid to share his ideas in class, face to face. If education is the great equalizer, then technology is surely his tool.

This blog is an experiment. While I may never be a digital native and may always have an “accent,” I do intend to learn as much as I can about this new age of communication and networking. This is all thanks to a very timely technology conference, Kukulu Kaiaulu, sponsored by Kamehameha Schools. If ever I attended a mind bending seminar, this was it. From the very first keynote (Will Richardson), my mind was spinning. Everything that I had previously held as truth, was now being brought to light and questioned, not only as an educator, but as a parent. “Put that cell phone away” “Use more than one resource, not just the internet” “Don’t use Wikipedia. Anyone can edit it, therefore, how can you be sure it is accurate and reliable?” “Video games are socially isolating our children” All of these (and more) were very common threads of thought for me and readily given voice in my classroom, I’m embarassed to say. So this online journal of thoughts and feelings and reactions will hopefully chronicle my journey, slow though it may be, and act as a catharsis (indeed inspired by the “art” of the online world). As a parent and educator, I owe it not only to myself, but to the many children whose lives I touch.

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