Final Challenge#10

girlThe final challenge of the year is upon us, Challenge #10.  This challenge asks us to audit our own blog by answering some questions. We will do just that right now.

  • How many posts did you write? We have written 24 posts since we began the challenge in September.
  • How many were school based, your own interests or set by the challenge? Of those posts, thirteen were challenge related, eight were school based, and three were of personal interest.
  • How many comments did you receive from classmates, teachers or overseas students? We were really fortunate enough this year to have received 101 total comments.
  • Which post received the most comments? Why do you think that happened? The posts that received the most comments were Christmas Crafts and Top 100 Classroom Blogs. We think that Christmas Crafts received several  comments because it gave helpful information at a time when making crafts as decorations or gifts was appropriate due to the coming holidays. The Top 100 Classroom Blogs received comments mostly from our local readers because it was quite an honor to have been chosen for that listing, and those commenting wanted our students to know that they were proud of them.
  • Which post did you enjoy writing the most and why? The post that we enjoyed bringing to our readers was Open Season. The reason was it was personal and unique. We shared with students something that they might not have otherwise experienced. One teacher stated it was like taking a field trip.
  • Did you change blog themes at all and why? We did not change our blog theme because of a couple of reasons. Our students designed the heading back when we began and it is very special to us. Secondly, our school themes are limited, and none that we previewed fit our current needs. We did, however, create a new heading as suggested in this challenge and now exhibit a seasonal theme.
  • How many widgets do you have? Do you think this is too many or not enough? We have a total of 29 widgets. Yes that does seem like a lot of extras, but we use our blog as the center of our curriculum resource. We have 20 widgets in the left sidebar which the students use on a regular basis for their Moodle lessons, AR reading tests, and language arts activities. The remaining widget in the left sidebar were added as a part of the Challenge.  We have 9 in the right sidebar which include subscriptions, introductions, search engines, our podcasts, and various blogrolls. It is important that these links be here for our students so that we can move through instruction in an efficient manner.

We are already participants in The Blogger’s Cafe challenges, and our blog is listed in their blogroll as well. We look forward to participating in the next Blog Challenge and hope that we can involve other classrooms here on our campus.

What’s Your Favorite?

We are at mid-year and have already had several school holidays. We were wondering, “What’s your favorite holiday?” Please help us our with our Blog Challenge 8 by completing this poll. We are interested in graphing the outcome on bar graphs, line graphs, tally mark charts, and pictographs. Thank you for your time.

Challenge #8 – 3 Altogether

Animated countdown

The count down is on and in just a few short weeks the Blog Challenge will end. This week the challenge is to visit the suggested blogs and leave a combined total of three comments altogether. After visiting each of the blogs, we decided that we would comment on the following:

  1. Ripple Effect – The students loved the Pivot Animation projects and we are eager to try one of our own.
  2. 4/5/6 Learning Centre – We have learned so much from the related links on her sidebar and also enjoy reading the regular posts. The plan to meet at lunchtime to help new bloggers was such a good idea. We may implement something like that ourselves.
  3. Mrs Ratzel – The Top Ten listing provided an authentic look into the minds of students and their thoughts on blogging. We are also honored to appear in their sidebar as one of the many blogs that this classroom follows. For that we thank you.

Having completed Challenge 8, we will also be completing our voting for 2010 Edublog Awards within the next week. We are sure that some of our favorite will finish on top.

Time to Nominate


Click on the Comic Strip for a Larger View.

Created at Make Beliefs Comix!

This period of the 2010 Challenge Yourself to Blog is coming to a close and it is time to nominate for the 2010 Edublog Awards. We have visited so many outstanding blogs during this season that it is difficult to choose just one from each category. We are also hoping that someone will choose to nominate the C-O Connections, of course!

My students, while a small class,  have “special” gifts and with each post they have attempted, they have shown me that blogging is definitely worth the time and effort it takes on the part of the teachers. These students who sometimes struggle to get their thoughts on paper, thrive in this Web 2.0 environment.  Thank you to Sue Waters and Miss Wyatt for providing opportunities where my students can feel successful.  We will look forward to participating again next year.

Our Nominations Are:

Best resource sharing blogLarry Ferlazzo – We go to this blog often to search for resources. You should too!

Best new blogTiara O’Malley – She just started with her new 3rd grade class of new bloggers less than 3 months ago and already has created a class of student blogs as well, Jot Your Thoughts. She is committed to integrating technology into her classroom.

Best educational use of video/visualMrs. Yollis – Truly a testimony to the rest of us of how blogging can be used to promote learning. LOVE her blogroll!

Best educational use of a social networkRichard Bryne – His Free Technology for Teachers is a valued presence on Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, and Google Friend Connect.

Best teacher blogBrent Coley – While I do not know if this qualifies as a “blog”, his class site has given great inspiration and guidance to our class, particularly in the area of podcasting.

Best Educational WikiVoicethread 4 Education – This site really helped connect us to others attempting to use Voicethread

Best Educational Tech Support BlogNina Peery, Keystrokes – This blog provides easy-to-find resources, ideas, safe search engines, etc. for students, teachers, and even PARENTS!

Best Group blogChallenge Yourself to Blog – It’s the reason we are all here…Enough said. Thank you for tearing down the walls.

Best Individual BlogMs. Tiatiana – She has worked hard to collect educational links in all core areas and is certainly successful in this endeavor and worthy of recognition for that service to educators.

Best Student BlogStephanie Hunter – Chicken Scratch – This teacher “found” a way to allow her third graders to write even though their “posts” are actually page edits. The teacher maintains the home page of the Student blog and students post on their individual pages. Created in August 2010, this blog has already showcased, as Mrs. Hunter states, “glimpses into the inner-workings of their fascinating and creative young minds!”

Best Class blogJan Smith, Huzzah! – If you are looking for something to inspire, this is it!

IdeaGood Luck to all nominees and remember that you are all winners, especially the students you have awakened.

Photo Attribution to annais; Flickr Creative Commons.

Challenge #4 Some of Our Favorites

favoriteFor blog Challenge #4, we were asked to find three blogs from a different school that we enjoyed visiting. The first blog that we visited was created by a student in Pennsylvania. Cory’s blog has some interesting places to visit in his state.  We would love to go to Hershey, PA because we love chocolate so much! Thanks Cory. Your blog is great! Keep up the good blogging! Another blog that the students visited was created by Girltime. We really laughed at all the funny dog pictures she has.  The last blog we visited and wanted to recognize is The Cool Place. There is a neat game that can be played with friends and a cool mystery story to read. This challenge has been really fun to go and look at all the different blogs.

Challenge #4

blog tomatoThe challenges suggested in Challenge #4 were very constructive. We added a Commenting page to our blog based on the rules already established by our district and our computer lab instructor, Nina Peery.  We also went into our GAME page and added two more rows of games options. There are some excellent choices to be found there, and I encourage visitors to try some of them. We have registered our blog for the Blog Action Day 2010 and look forward to posting about water. The students will be visiting at least three blogs this week, adding them to our Blogs We Love listing, and leaving comments.  Once again thank you to Sue Waters and The Edublogger and Miss Wyatt for this challenge.

Here’s Your Sign

This past week in the Challenge#3 Miss Wyatt posted a challenge proposed by Miss T about signs. We have some interesting signs here in Texas. Also, we have a comedian who has made the phrase, “Here’s Your Sign”, rather famous, Bill Engvall.

So we gathered some unusual signs here and have created a Glogster poster for you. Please leave us your comments on these “uncommon” signs.