Using Blogging Software to Provide Additional Writing Instruction

Carol TODD

Classroom teachers sometimes struggle trying to find time during the typical school day to provide the writing instruction students need to be successful. This study examined 29 fifth through twelfth grade classroom teachers’ survey responses about their perception of the effectiveness of using an online blogging tool, Kidblog, to plan and provide writing instruction for a struggling writer through survey responses and reflective journal entries. In addition, qualitative data from 16 of the 29 teachers were collected through their journals. After eight weeks of using the blogging tool, teachers perceived the tool to be more effective than they had originally thought it would be. The teachers reported that they were able to evaluate their individual student’s writing progress to determine next steps in writing instruction. They perceived that student engagement with the writing process increased during the study. Additionally, using an online format encouraged teachers to incorporate other online tools into their instruction. However, barriers to using the blogging tool were also identified. Teachers reported that they would have liked the opportunity for more face-to-face interaction with their students and they also indicated that students may need strong keyboarding skills to effectively use the Kidblog tool. Additionally, prior to implementing the tool, teachers identified practice should have been provided for the teachers, as some found the blogging software difficult to use.

KEYWORDS: K-12writing instruction, blogging, struggling writers, Kidblog, technology, and writing tutoring

DOI : 10.17718/tojde.53394