Summer Reading: Top Education Blogs
It’s summer! Take some time to catch up on your favorite education blogs and find new ones to follow. Blogs in the education field are gathering quite a following, but for those of you who’ve never blogged or followed a blog, here’s a quick introduction.
What exactly is a blog?
Basically, a blog is a collection of online messages, or posts, written by a person about a particular topic. Some topics are very general (i.e. politics or energy conservation) while others have a narrow focus (i.e. vegetarian cooking or a family’s blog). Messages are posted for anyone to read. Readers are referred to as “followers” and post comments about the individual posts.
There are 3 ways to follow a blog:
1. Web Browser: Type in the blog’s URL into your web browser and scroll through the posts.
2. Email: Automatically follow the blog so each time a new post is published you receive an email with the text to your inbox. Most blogs allow you to enter your email address to receive the posts in your mailbox. Even if there are several posts in one day, you only receive one email.
3. RSS Feed: After downloading an RSS Reader to your computer (like Google’s free Reader reader.google.com), you can subscribe to the RSS feeds of your favorite blogs and read through the posts like you’re browsing through e-mail. Just about every blog offers an RSS feed. Just look for the RSS logo (a little orange box with 3 white waves), click it and follow the on-screen instructions.
Top education blogs
So now that you know a little about what a blog is, let’s find some education blogs to read. We’ve combed through hundreds of education blogs and talked to educators about their favorites to compile the following list.
- NeverEndingSearch: Kathryn Tennelly, high school librarian in Moscow, Pa. says, “My very favorite blog is Joyce Valenza’s blog NeverEndingSearch. There are great tips for students and educators within its contents and I refer to it frequently.”
- Lily’s Blackboard: Written by the NEA’s Vice President, Lily Eskelsen, who posts about trends in education, from the classroom, to the statehouse, to federal education policy.
- Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day: In addition to the timely and helpful websites of the day, this blog’s author, who teaches ESL, ELL and EFL in California, compiles listing of his most popular posts. Mr. Ferlazzo also writes the blog, Engaging Parents in School.
- 21st Century Educational Technology and Learning: Author Michael Gorman writes about all aspects of using technology for teaching and learning and uses his blog to continue to “advocate for teachers and students while concentrating efforts at transforming education and bringing 21st Century Skills to every classroom.”
- Cool Cat Teacher: Follow full time teacher Vicki Davis for her sometimes practical, sometimes inspirational, but always helpful posts for “teaching students with a new enthusiasm.”
- Top Teaching: Written by Scholastic’s Teacher Advisors, this blog is a mix of real-life classroom tips and tricks as well as general insights into the education field.
- The Innovative Educator: Author Lisa Nielsen is thinking outside the box, way outside. Like “friending” students on Facebook and allowing them to use their cell phones for interactive projects. Although you may not be able to incorporate all of her suggestions, just reading the posts make you think of everything you can do.
- David Warlick’s 2 Cents Worth: David describes himself as “a non-traditional educator who is grappling with an intensely exciting world he had no reason to expect,” and although his blog is focused on technology in education, he often branches out into education policy and real-world uses.
And if you’d like to chronicle your life as an educator, check out Edublogs, a publishing platform to help you set up and publish your very own blog.
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