Monday, August 29, 2011

Focus on GoogleApps: Blogger

If you're reading this, you are seeing one of the "new" apps that we now have available for CCSD GoogleApps: Blogger.  Blogger has been around forever, but until last week, we didn't have access to it while logged into CCSD GoogleApps.  It's just one of a set of tools that we can now access, and I'll be focusing on those in later blog posts. 

So, how do you get to it and what can you do with it?

1)  To access Blogger, go under the "More' pull-down in the upper left-hand corner of your GoogleApps screen and choose "even more."
2)  Scroll down the list until you see the "Social" heading, and you should see "Blogger."
3)  Click on the "Create a blog" link and get started!

So, how would you use Blogger in the classroom?  The most common implementation is a class blog, where you record what's happening in your classroom.  However, unlike GoogleSites or Moodle, this is not the best solution for posting files for kids to download.  It's a great solution for posting announcements or assignment directions, though, because it goes in reverse chronological order (most recent posts appear first).

If you're teaching writing (and all of are supposed to be including writing in our classes), have students contribute posts to your blog.  They can comment on each other's posts, insert images or links, or respond to a question that you post for them.

As with all things Google, there are all kinds of help documents you can peruse to learn more.  If you're new to Blogger, I'd recommend the "Getting Started Guide."  If you're already comfortable but need to know some specific things, you can always click on the "Help" link in the upper right-hand corner.  Or, if you need a 1:1, contact me via email, and I'll be happy to help.