Monday, February 25, 2008

Seeing your stuff online - whoa. . .

As the web "master" as SHHS, I am used to seeing content that I put together online. That being said, what is posted on the website isn't my voice but rather a reflection of information deemed important, usually in the words of others. There is really something powerful, though, in seeing your thoughts online, which is so clearly evident in the blogging tool.

Here's an example of this power: my husband, not a techie at all, is absolutely passionate about music. He recently bought an album from iTunes from someone I've never heard of (do we still call it an album? what is the correct vocabulary term?). He decided to post a comment/review on iTunes about this artist -- Gary Louris, for those who may be interested. He could not get over the idea that his review was ON iTUNES!!! We have probably visited that album's reviews on iTunes at least 4 times since he posted, just because it is a thrill to see his stuff published. He has even called friends/relatives to have them go online to see his review. Did I mention that he is not a techie?

Seeing his enthusiasm made me think about something I heard/saw Alan November say on one of his vodasts: kids are social creatures, and they like seeing their work in a social context. They will revise & revise to make sure it is "good." (FYI: this is not a direct quotation, but rather a summation of what I took from his presentation.) If my husband was excited to see his writing online, how would a student feel? Would a student feel the same passion & enthusiasm?

Why am I just now seeing that this could be such a great tool with students? How can I pass along the power of this tool to teachers who are willing but aren't armed with time? And how does this type of writing support our writing goals?

My hope is that if my own blogging experience is indicative of some kind of natural progression, I can encourage teachers to commit to blogging just for their own thinking and maybe they'll have a similar a-ha moment. Maybe.

* This post was originally published on the Smoky Hill Blogosphere blog before the move to Blogger.