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KidBlog Research Page

KidBlog Group Member Introduction Page 

http://www.blogtap.net/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/kidblog.png

                                                    


Table of Contents

I. History and Development
     a. What is KidBlog?
     b. What is the purpose of KidBlog?
     c. Who are the developers?
     d. Who uses KidBlog?
     e. How do you use KidBlog?
II. Real World Application
     a. Educational Lesson Plans
     b. Business/Industry Applications
III. KidBlog News:  What's going on in KidBlog?
     a. Local
IV. Demonstrations of Educational Value
     a. What do teachers have to say about KidBlog?
     b. How is KidBlog technologically advancing students?
V. KidBlog International Use?
VI. How does KidBlog compare to other Blogs?
     a. What are benefits of using KidBlog rather than other blogs?
     b. How is KidBlog easier for students to use than other blogs?
     c. Is there another blog that proves that KidBlog is better, because it doesn’t offer as good of features?
     d. Is there anything that might make a site such as this better than KidBlog?
VII. References

I. History and Development

a. What is KidBlog?

KidBlog is a tool that is designed for teachers to utilize technology and share the blogging world with their students in an easy and safe manner. With KidBlog, teachers can control and observe the students activity on the blog and their accounts. This gives each student an opportunity to have their own blog and to be apart of a blogging community with in the classroom which creates a safe environment for students away from the dangers of predators on the web. This last point about the many security features included is very important because this blogging program’s focal audience is elementary and middle school students who can be unaware of the dangers that are lurking on the web. Another great bonus feature about KidBlog is that it is free and is very easily navigated. KidBlog is easy to set up and use with simple direct tables easily understood by the young students using the program. This program is a great tool to utilize in the classroom because in a growing technological world KidBlog is a simple step into teaching student on how certain technologies can enhance their learning experience and teacher/student communication within the classroom and beyond.

Reference

 
Reference

b. What is the purpose of KidBlog?

“KidBlog's simple, yet powerful tools allow students to publish posts and participate in discussions within a secure classroom blogging community. Teachers maintain complete control over student blogs.” KidBlog is designed for educational use, promoting educational blogging within the classroom. The purpose of KidBlog is to create an environment which is an open communication line between student/teacher and student/student. This also allows students to more easily work on group projects and posts, assignments, and essay and directly turn them in. Which brings me to my next point that posting on KidBlog is a greener alternative than printing off every assignment. So now just with a click of a button, you can post your assignment and there it is for the teacher to see. Which also gives student the opportunity to get feedback on their work from other peers and also from their teacher to help them better understand the lessons and to receive different perspectives on different topics broadening their educational horizon.

Reference

c. Who are the developers?

Dan Flies

Dan Flies is a co-found of KidBlog.  Dan Flies received his degree in Information Technology and Services from the University of Minnesota-Morris.  Dan Flies' specialties are in a wide variety including:  "Accountancy, Auditing, Documentation, Finance, Risk Management, IT Strategy, Meeting Facilitation, PHP, Process Engineering, Programming, Risk Assessment, Sarbanes-Oxley, SQL, and Website Production."  His current job standing is the IT Business Controls Specialist at Lawson Software. 

Matt Hardy

Matt Hardy is the founder and lead developer of KidBlog.  He has worked 18 years of web development and classroom teaching.  Matt Hardy received his Bachelors Degree in computer science.  He also received his M. Ed. in elementary education.  Matt Hardy created KidBlog in 2007 to help with his own work in the classroom for his 3rd grade class.  Matt Hardy has 12 years of professional experience in web development, and he has 6 years of classroom experience working with students in elementary school. 

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d. Who uses KidBlog?

“KidBlog.org is designed for elementary and middle school teachers who want to provide each student with their own, unique blog.” KidBlog was designed for educational use for teachers and students exploring the blogging world and seeking to use technology to better enhance higher learning in the classroom and a promote great communication link between classmates and the teacher. It allows teachers to post assignments and for students post their answer and also be able to comment on each others posts which can show students new perspectives on different topics they are learning. Also if the teacher adds the parent button then parents can use the blog to read up on what their child is learning in class. So overall the three main people who use KidBlog would be teachers, students, and parents of those students.

Reference

 

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e. How do you use KidBlog?

1. Firstly, a teacher signs up and creates an account using a user name, password, email address, and the teacher specified classroom name (i.e. Mr. John Doe’s classroom).

2.  After creating a KidBlog home page the classroom teacher will be sent to a page that allows the teacher to change settings and add students.

Reference
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3. From there the teacher is able to post blogs that ask questions or share links.

Reference

4. Students then are able to sign up and find their designated teacher.

5. After signing in they are able to post based on their teacher’s blog and answer any questions asked.

6.  The blog page is free of advertising and a streamline layout to not cause distractions for students.

7. Although the students will firstly see the newest blog a list of all previous blogs will be present on a right side column.

KidBlog

  • Here are two great videos that guide you through step by step directions on how to sign up and KidBlog’s unique features.

                             

Reference

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_KtWSaVdzkI


  • Here is a video where an teacher explains the KidBlog site.

                                http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78FFxbe3Ecg&feature=related

    

II. Real World Application

a. Educational Lesson Plans

i. Elementary

Title:

Writing Lesson Plan

Targeted Audience:

3rd Grade

Overview:

This lesson plan is an Elementary Lesson Plan for 3rd Grade students learning about writing a paragraph.

Objective:

Given this lesson plan students will know the process of writing a paragraph and will be able to write a paragraph using the writing process with ninety percent accuracy.

Lesson Plans:

Word Document: Lesson Plan 1
PDF: Lesson Plan 1

  

Title:

Science Lesson Plan

Targeted Audience:

5th Grade

Overview:

This lesson plan is an Elementary Lesson Plan for 5th Grade students learning and writing about plant cells.

Objective:

Given this lesson plan, students will learn about plant cells and create an outline and a journal on plant cells in KidBlog with knowledge of eighty percent accuracy.

Lesson Plans:

Word Document: Lesson Plan 2 STEM
PDF: Lesson Plan 2 STEM

a

Title:

Reading and Writing Lesson Plan

Targeted Audience:

5th Grade

Overview:

This lesson plan is an Elementary Lesson Plan for 5th Grade students writing a book review.

Objective:

Given a book of their choice, students should read the book and take notes while they read on KidBlog, and they will write a book review about the book they read and post it on KidBlog with eighty-five percent accuracy.

Lesson Plans:

Word Document: Lesson Plan 3
 PDF: Lesson Plan 3

ii. Secondary

Title:

History Lesson Plan

Targeted Audience:

9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th Grade

Overview:

This lesson plan is a Secondary Lesson Plan for 9-12th Grade students writing a biography paper.

Objective:

Given this lesson plan students will learn about biographies, how to research them and how to write them, how to write biographies, how to write an outline for a biography, how to edit and revise other student's papers, and how to write a final copy of their biography with ninety percent accuracy.

Lesson Plans:

Word Document: Lesson Plan 1
PDF: Lesson Plan 1

a

Title:

Literature Lesson Plan

Targeted Audience:

6th, 7th, and 8th Grade

Overview:

This lesson plan is a Secondary Lesson Plan for 6-8th Grade students writing a compare and contrast essay.

Objective:

Given this lesson plan on KidBlog, students will learn about two short stories by Edgar Allan Pie and write a comparison and contrast essay about the two short stories with eighty percent accuracy.

Lesson Plans:

Word Document: Lesson Plan 2
PDF: Lesson Plan 2

a

Title:

Science Lesson Plan

Targeted Audience:

9th Grade

Overview:

This lesson plan is a Secondary Lesson Plan for 9th Grade students doing a science lab and writing a lab report.

Objective:

Given this lesson plan on KidBlog, students will understand how lift must be greater than gravity for flight and understand how to write a lab report with ninety percent accuracy.

Lesson Plans:

Word Document: Lesson Plan 3 STEM
PDF: Lesson Plan 3 STEM

iii. Post-Secondary

Title:

Chemistry Lesson Plan

Targeted Audience:

College Students in Chemistry Class

Overview:

This lesson plan is a Post-Secondary Lesson Plan for a chemistry class learning about basic chemical equations.

Objective:

Given the video on KidBlog the students will be able to identify the different kind of reactions given a chemical equation with ninety percent accuracy.

Lesson Plans:

Word Document: Lesson Plan 1 STEM
PDF: Lesson Plan 1 STEM

a

Title:

Understanding Simple and Compound Subjects

Targeted Audience:

Non-English Speakers Learning English

Overview:

This lesson plan is a Post-Secondary Lesson Plan for non-English speakers who are learning basic English concepts - simple and compound sentences.

Objective:

Given this lesson plan, students should be able to identify simple subjects, identify compound subjects, and complete exercises on simple and complex subjects with ninety percent accuracy.

Lesson Plans:

Word Document: Lesson Plan 2
PDF: Lesson Plan 2



a

Title:

Nouns and Pronouns Lesson Plan

Targeted Audience:

Non-English Speakers Learning English at an Elementary School Level

Overview:

This lesson plan is a Post-Secondary Lesson Plan for non-English speakers who are learning basic English concepts - nouns and pronouns.

Objective:

Given this lesson plan, students will be able to identify common nouns, identify proper nouns, identify pronouns, and use common nouns, proper nouns, and pronouns in sentences correctly with ninety percent accuracy.

Lesson Plans:

Word Document: Lesson Plan 3
PDF: Lesson Plan 3

Reference

b. Business/Industry Applications

KidBlog cannot really be utilized at all by businesses/industries because it is only designed for a classroom environment. KidBlog was designed for teachers and students to be able to explore and use the blogging world in an age of a technological boom.  This site was not built for business use; it was just built to create a safe and simple way for elementary/middle school students to expand their horizon of learning using the blogging world.

III. KidBlog News:  What's going on in KidBlog?

Reference

a. Local

KidBlog recently won fifth (out of seven) in the Fantastic Free Social Media Tools for Teachers. It recognized Matt Hardy’s (inventor of KidBlog) hard work in creating a site that is safe for students by removing all advertisements. It states that KidBlog is “more specific than EduBlogs” without the added bonus of changing appearances. Also stated is that KidBlog is a fantastic resource for students within the K-8 grade range and serves as the “perfect tool” for reaching out to students and aiding in their education. Above all else, it recognizes how accessible this tool is for teachers and how much control the teacher can have over this blog site.

Kidblog Award

Here is an article from Twin Cites Business website and it actually has an interview with one of KidBlog’s co-founders Matt Hardy. It talks about how blogs and different technologies can be used for educational uses and enhance learning with the technological student’s of today. And in this article they also rave about KidBlog and its special features.  Also as I mentioned above this article includes an interview with Matt Hardy a co-founder of KidBlog.

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IV. Demonstrations of Educational Value

a. What do teachers have to say about KidBlog?


Reference

Josh, a fourth grade teacher from Missouri, claims he is “Cuckoo for KidBlogs!” KidBlog has given students the opportunity to express themselves through writing by incorporating technology. At first, Josh was hesitant about the reactions of the students and the classroom as a whole. He decided to go along with the idea and the kids absolutely love it! Every morning, his students check their blogs and write various comments on the work of their fellow classmates. It excites them and motivates them to write and learn.

Reference

Lee Kolbert, an elementary school teacher in Florida, states, “My kids enjoy the independence that comes with having their own blogs and their parents feel comfortable knowing that I'm carefully moderating everything that gets posted.” Her students enjoy the many features that allow younger students blog and really utilize technology inside and outside of the classroom. Lee is able to moderate all the posts and comments made by students and parents. Parents are able to see their child's work and the progression of the classroom, as a whole. Her students seem to really enjoy KidBlog!

Reference

b. How is KidBlog technologically advancing students?

KidBlog, a blogging site for middle school and elementary school students, has become quite popular over the past few years. Due to its ability to improve writing skills and to technologically advance students, teachers have used KidBlog to enhance learning and motivation in the classroom. Blogging, in general, is one of today’s newest ways to communicate and digitally converse. According to the founders of KidBlog, “Blogging is a means of self-expression that extends to nearly every social sphere — moms, entrepreneurs, soldiers, athletes – bloggers can be found in every walk of life, every niche, profession and people group”. Introducing students to KidBlog will motivate students to write and participate in class discussions. Motivating students to participate and express their ideas through blogging will prepare students to use technology in future classes and in real life settings.

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Students can utilize KidBlog in various ways. By posting a blog, students are able to receive feedback and enables them to better their work. Commenting on blogs works both ways. The student receiving the feedback gets ideas on how to improve on their response as well as the person leaving the comment. Students can also utilize KidBlog by writing responses outside of the classroom. If a student happens to be ill, it provides a way to complete work even if he/she is not present.

Reference

 

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V. KidBlog International Use?

KidBlog is easy, accessible, and international. It works to help “teachers and students around the world to realize the full potential of blogging with their classrooms.” It is a highly accessible website that connects with those outside of the United States to better understand certain material inside the classroom as well as out.

Although KidBlog is highly accessible outside of the United States; we also found that there is no option to change the language (only in English) but this is not really a problem (as long as the person setting up the blog knows English) because a blog is communicating back and forth through typing so you can just type in your own language so it is not a big deal although it may cause some glitches along the way. (For example, mixing up the button due to the language barrier on the KidBlog page)

Another international use is that through KidBlog international students can practice learning and perfecting their English skills through blogging with others in their class and the teacher can give feedback on their English skills.

Kidblog

 

VI. How does KidBlog compare to other Blogs?

a. What are benefits of using KidBlog rather than other blogs?

As I began researching exactly what KidBlog was and learned a little about the site I realized that it offers many features that make it slightly better than other blogging sites.  The makers of KidBlog developed a site to allow young students the chance to have a safe and easy way to begin the blogging experience.  Some would wonder how this site is safer than other sites, and that is simply because they have developed it so that instructors can monitor the site to see the work of all the students.  The instructor manages a class and must approve all material presented for the site before it can be put onto the site.  This type of application is neat, because it allows students to see and compare their work with other students in the class.

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b. How is KidBlog easier for students to use than other blogs?

KidBlog's creators made this site easy for students to navigate and use, putting it ahead of other blogging sites in ease of use.  They did so by making it a basic site that offers students no advertisements, or links to any other social networking or gaming sites.  By designing the site in this manner, the site is in general less distracting for its target audience. This is especially important with this particular site because this site is aimed at elementary/middle school students who are more easily distracted than an older group would be.  Not only did they come up with a great basic design, but they also incorporated easy to use log in menus and a main directory page with easy to find and use links for students.

Reference

c. Is there another blog that proves that KidBlog is better, because it doesn’t offer as good of features?

Reference
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In order to combat concerns that KidBlog is actually better than other educational blogging sites, I took time to look up another education based blog to compare with KidBlog.  One blog that I found is called TeacherLingo.  This is a site created by teachers for teachers, allowing teachers the opportunity to post information about what worked and what didn’t work in classes they were teaching through any level of school.  TeacherLingo also offers links to the list of every teacher that posts on this site, making it convenient for teachers to communicate with each other.   This is neat, because if, as a teacher, you are ever struggling to find information on how to prepare a good lesson this could be used as a place to start for ideas.  Although this site offers some beneficial features such as these, I noticed upon exploring the site a bit more that it is not as convenient or as easy to use as KidBlog.  Unlike KidBlog, the main page on this site is crowded with lots of information that makes it difficult to navigate.  In addition to poor organization, this site has also incorporated many distracting advertisements and links to other non educational sites.  As mentioned above advertisements such as these are distracting for users, and will therefore make the site less productive for its users. 

Reference

d. Is there anything that might make a site such as this better than KidBlog?


Reference

After researching others I have come to realize that although I think KidBlog is overall a much better and easier to use site, other sites have some capabilities that as a future teacher I think are more of a convenience.   TeacherLingo offers its users the ability not only to post on this site, but also tweet things, and share everything on its site on other social networking sites such as Facebook.  This offers teachers using this site to be in constant communication with each other, or at least the ability to access the site from virtually anywhere. I think that in today’s society these types of applications benefit its users more than a site such as KidBlog that doesn’t offer such things. 

Reference

Reference

Advertising KidBlog

Brochure

KidBlog Handout

VII. References

http://www.blogtap.net/kidblog-a-free-blogging-platform-for-the-elementary-and-middle-school-classroom/

http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/2010/05/08/kidblog-kids-blogging-teacher-supervision-and-its-free/

http://21centuryedtech.wordpress.com/2010/05/08/kidblog-kids-blogging-teacher-supervision-and-its-free/

http://joshysteachertales.blogspot.com/2010/04/cuckoo-for-kidblogs.html

http://macmomma.blogspot.com/2010/04/how-to-blog-it-forward.html

http://blogs.msad52.org/

http://www.askowlbert.com/images/einstein.jpg

http://www.linkedin.com/in/danflies

http://kidslearntoblog.com/all-you-need-to-know-about-kidblog/

http://www.educationtechnologyblog.com/1/post/2010/01/kidblogorg-update.html

http://tcbmag.blogs.com/start_me_up/2010/09/bloggers-beware-theres-a-new-kid-in-town.html

http://www.localschooldirectory.com/lesson-plans/id/337

http://www.localschooldirectory.com/lesson-plans/id/633

http://www.k6edu.com/3rdgrade/language_arts/process-of-writing.html

http://www.localschooldirectory.com/lesson-plans/id/291

http://www.localschooldirectory.com/lesson-plans/id/327

http://www.localschooldirectory.com/lesson-plans/id/219

http://www.eduref.org/Virtual/Lessons/Science/Chemistry/CHM0008.html

http://www.localschooldirectory.com/lesson-plans/id/25

http://www.localschooldirectory.com/lesson-plans/id/13

Earth Picture

http://teacherlingo.com/

http://horn34.edublogs.org/files/2010/08/pencil_logo_kidblog.gif

http://thinkingstorm.com/images/teacherlingo_logo.gif

http://profile.ak.fbcdn.net/hprofile-ak-snc4/hs458.snc4/50553_56083216880_7453_n.jpg

http://kidblog.org/kidblogimages/2.9/screenshots/Dashboard.jpeg
http://kidblog.org/kidblogimages/2.9/screenshots/WriteAPost.jpeg

http://kidblog.org/kidblogimages/2.9/screenshots/AddaUser.jpeg

http://kidblog.org/about.php

http://cdn.mashable.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/1kidblog.jpg

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UKhMeHcCG_8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_KtWSaVdzkI

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78FFxbe3Ecg&feature=related

    http://tcbmag.blogs.com/start_me_up/2010/09/bloggers-beware-theres-a-new-kid-in-town.htmlhttp://school.discoveryeducation.com/clipart/images/ed-news-color.gif

http://school.discoveryeducation.com/clipart/images/ed-news-color.gif

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