“Blogging – an essential online space” (link to the recording) was the theme of this week’s Tech Talk Tuesdays. I feel stronly that blogging should be open and online. Why? Otherwise students should use offline tools to document their learning etc. A question was asked
“How can we ensure that students are safe and secure whilst blogging?”
Here are some suggestions:
- The teacher should model and actively demonstrate safety, security and netiquette through a class blog first. Students will then learn safety aspects and appropriate online behaviour before individual blogging commences.
- Students should be taught what constitutes private information and how to protect their private information
- Make security and safety an integral part of teaching -give constant reminders to students. Use any teachable moments as they arise.
- Use strong passwords
- Ensure that the teacher is a co-administrator of each student blog (for older students) or administrator for younger students (with them being an editor). This allows a teacher to step in and moderate if and when necessary.
- Comments should always be moderated.
- Blog roll links on the sidebar of blogs to other students should not list the last name of the students. Use first names only.
- Teachers should regularly check student blogs, make it part of their assessment.
- Encourage parents, teachers and community members (including global) to read the students blogs. Any problems will then be quickly alerted to.
- Participate in any online webinars that may be offered to classes by organisations such as esafety.
- Students create digital avatars as their visual representation rather than use their photo
- Ensure the school has have fully signed parent permission forms before adding photos of students to online spaces
- Students should not be named in any photos in blog posts or pages. It is preferable to include group photos or use photos where faces are not clearly shown. There are software tools to pixellate faces. Read the excellent post by @suewaters Are you using student photos online?