Minecraft suddenly ramps up the need to blog :)

Another exciting day in the mines was had by our 9/10 class today, and even more exciting for me! This year we have deliberately increased the students need to create an online identity beyond the game and engage them in tasks that require consideration with regard to literacy. To do this we have created a ranking system, which I have re-blogged recently from Natbott’s blog, essentially it requires students to blog. I have in the past set students up with individual blogs and given them set tasks to undertake, with wavering success to say the least. Almost to the point where I was more frustrated than excited about the experience. This time is different. I have decided to approach it differently. I am not requiring them to have an individual blog, I am not requiring them to blog. Yet they want too and the momentum is building. The ranking system requires them to provide evidence of what they are doing in-game and this can then be placed on our blog. To start with I have been placing the work on the blog. You might think this to be a little odd, doing something for someone who should be able to do it for themselves, but the students need to want to do if for themselves. They need purpose! After putting up some of their work a couple of wonderful people from my twitter and google+ community responded, not to me but to the student. This was key, it required the student to respond. They had purpose to actively participate in the blog. They realised they had an audience beyond the class. An audience that was then using their work with their students, which was even more exciting. All of a sudden a few students started to sign up to wordpress.com so they could respond. This led to the next step, they need to upload their own content onto the blog. A side note here, I was extremely glad to see their enthusiasm but was starting to get really behind in uploading their work….I needed a solution real fast. The students have not taken any convincing. They have started taking on the roles of editor of our class blog. I discussed with them the importance of proof reading, to which they quickly devised a plan of attack, to ensure that their work was ready for publishing. Now I am finally excited about class blogging as it has a real purpose, it is owned by the students and they are taking over the driver seat. We will incorporate ranking up in-game with the work they do as editors, so this will provide extra incentive. Visit their blog at http://projectmistrhs.wordpress.com/

2 Comments

  1. I gather from your post that your students all have editing rights on the class blog and use that one blog to upload their content and make posts? This sounds a really efficient idea, just in terms of blogging being all in the one place! Cheers:)

  2. dbatty1 says:

    They are slowly signing up with WordPress as the need arises and then given editing rights to the class blog. Which means to start with I’m really busy posting on their behalf. Once they receive comments and have more to post they then move to editors of the blog. Ideally I’m hoping that a number of them will start running their own blogs too. So far I have about 7 who have just moved to being editors. Fingers crossed the other 40 students will do the same. 🙂

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