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April 30th, 2013
Kidblog provides a safe, and free, online forum for student writing
Designed by classroom educators, Kidblog is a free website that gives students their own blog. Students can publish posts and participate in academic discussions within a secure classroom blogging community, while teachers maintain complete control over student blogs and user accounts.
With Kidblog, students’ blogs are private by default—viewable only by classmates and the teacher. Teachers can choose to make posts public, while still moderating all content. Teachers also can add password-protected parent and guest accounts to the community at their discretion, while comment privacy settings allow teachers to block unsolicited comments from outside sources. Kidblog is fully COPPA-compliant and does not require any personal information from students.
“All 141 fifth graders at my school have Kidblog accounts,” says Carol Edwards, an instructional technology specialist in Round Rock, Texas. “The students are blogging about the books they are reading. They are writing for an authentic audience of their peers, and their writing skills are improving. They are learning digital citizenship and the basics of social media use in a protected environment, too.”
Edwards adds: “Teachers are happy about being able to evaluate student writing easily, without the need to lug home piles of writing journals. [But] the best thing about Kidblog is that students are motivated to write more often and to improve the quality of their writing. The students love interacting with their peers, their classroom teachers, and other adults on campus.”