Monday, April 30, 2012

Fun Collaboration

Today I tried something I have been thinking about for a long time.  My colleague, Mike Gwaltney, currently at Oregon Episcopal School, has his students blog on a regular basis.  Ever generous, Mike allowed me to duplicate his site/experiment for my seventh graders.  Today, I asked the seventh graders to read Mike's kids' blog posts and comment on them.  I had no idea if seventh graders would understand the sophisticated writing they encountered.  The closest experience they had was writing their own blog entry and responding to their classmates' blogs.  Not only did they understand it, their comments were spot on!  They responded to topics such as collaborating on a group project, modern political thought, and what online courses have to offer.  What a fabulously successful experience.  I have more respect than ever for this special group of seventh graders, thank both the Age of Ex class and the OSG AP US History cohort for not only reading seventh grade writing, but having the patience to respond and continue the discussion; and once again, thank Mike for pushing me to engage kids in authentic experiences.  What a day!

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