This 2006 research study seeks to explore the K-12 use of blogs by teachers. Research question for the study, What are the perceptions and activities of K-12 teacher bloggers concerning the usefulness of Weblogs? In particular the researchers sought to examine the usefulness of blogs in supportive reflective practice.
- Blogging promotes critical literacy skills, including reading, writing, self-expression, reflection and creativity (Huffaker, 2004).
- Oravec’s (2004) work supports these assertions. “Similar to an open journal, the accumulation of writings and other content [published in a blog] creates both a record of learning and a resource for others” to use (Campbell, 2003).
- Through the use of blogs, journaling has re-emerged as a way to promote writing skills.
- Written reflection…is an effective method of thinking about practice. Blogs are especially effective at supporting…reflection…more so than other technologies would be.”
- Weblogs can provide an electronic forum for reading, writing, and collaborating with peers, and others.
- Students and instructors can use blogs to cultivate ideas and share them online with colleagues and others.
- Blogs can give users a sense of connection with their peers.
- Blogs provide a means of delivering course content including syllabi, assignments, links and other updates as necessary.
- Blogging supports reflective practice.
- Blogging provides an opportunity to record experiences, reflect…and organize.
- Findings indicate that teacher-created, teacher-centered weblogs can be effective reflective devices. For most participants, blogs functioned as reflective journals where theycould write about and reflect on events occurring in their classroom. Blogs are used not only to think about teaching practice but also to assess the teachers’ own performance as teachers.
- Reflection is importance since expert teachers engage in continuous reflection about the effectiveness of their work.
- Blogs are especially effective at supporting…reflection…more so than other technologies would be.
- Blogs enable teachers to establish communities of practice that support one another’s work. This kind of collaborative interaction among peers can promote enhanced understanding of complex situations.
- Blogs allow for individual expression and ownership, even as they promote collaboration between educators.
- Future research suggestions include the use of weblogs with preservice teachers.
Check out Miguel’s Workshop Materials online at http://mglearns.wikispaces.com