I applaud those of you behind the creation of the Edublogs Teacher Challenge. It is an amazing effort to reach out to those of us who are new and not so new in the blogosphere and provides us with an opportunity to hone our skills individually and collectively.
Since commencing my blog as part of the VicPLN course back in April of 2010, I made the decision at the conclusion of the course to continue blogging. NovaNews seems to have now developed a life of its own. Most of my blog posts are reflections about my own learning journey but along the way, as readers have left comments, this path has taken unexpected twists and turns. That, I realize is what it is all about.
I know I’ve still got lots to learn about blogging, but at the same time, I realize that I have already learned much. Sharing some of my knowledge with you is part and parcel of the blogging process. So, along with other participants, this is my first post in the Teacher Challenge: Kick Start Activity 1 – Advanced – Down Blog’s Memory Lane! Consider the following list of things that I think are important about blogging.
- First and foremost blogging is fun! You choose the topic, the style and the format of your blog. You direct, others follow.
- Blogging is a way of expanding your PLN. The exchange of comments is an invaluable way of building up a core readership. Don’t forget to comment on the blog posts of others too!
- Be sure to make your blog post title a short, sharp statement: one that is both reflective of the blog post’s content as well as appealing. This will entice increased and continued readership.
- Don’t make your post too long. Readers don’t want to wade through a really lengthy post.
- Vary the presentation of your blog and aim to make it attractive: use numbering or blockquotes to indent and break up the look of your post; insert pictures, videos, graphics, links, audio files, images.
- When inserting a link, be sure to select in the ‘Target’ field the tab that says ‘Open link in a new window’. This will ensure that when a reader follows a link you’ve included, your original blog post will remain open.
- Always acknowledge sources. Firstly, this is a courtesy. Secondly, it ensures that the original author’s work is valued.
- Blogging is a way of sharing knowledge. Aim to make your blog post informative. Include original thoughts or corroborate the thoughts expressed in the posts of others.
- Establish a theme or a style. This will attract and inspire repeat visits to your blog as your readers will develop an expectation of what they might ‘see’ if they come visit your blog again. This will in turn help to build up your ‘audience’.
- Be sure to publicize your blog so as to expand your readership. If no one knows you’re blogging, no one will read it. Twitter is a great forum to publicize new blog posts.