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Creative Education

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How to Set up a Class Blog in Five Minutes

How to Set up a Class Blog in Five Minutes

Make your new year’s resolution to start up a blog for your class

Blogging is an exciting way to get your class working together and fully engaged.  I recently discussed 10 Reasons You Should Get Your Class Bloggingand the response has been great.  It seems that lots of teachers have decided that their new year’s resolution is to get their class blogging.  But not everyone is sure how.

Out of the Box vs Bespoke

You can spend a lot of time developing a bespoke blog using wordpress.org or similar, but the impression I’m getting is that the majority of teachers are looking to spend their time actually blogging rather than building the blog itself.  That’s understandable and in which case you’ll be looking for an out of the box solution.  i.e. someone else has already done the hard work for you.

There are several great out of the box solutions, the one that has been recommended to me the most is Primary Blogger (which is built on WordPress but the hard work is all already done).  In a few very short steps you can set up your own blog with them, it will take you less than five minutes to get started.  And what’s more, it’s free.  Primary Blogger also has the benefit of being unblocked in most schools unlike some other blog providers and it features a range of primary school specific widgets (that’s things you can add to your blog) such as learning games, and e-safety links.

 

Set up a blog in five minutes with Primary Blogger

  1. Visit www.primaryblogger.co.uk and click ‘begin making magic.
  2. Type a username and password and enter a valid email address (this does not have to be a school email address).
  3. Once you’ve registered Log in.
  4. Select your blog address.  This is the URL that you will give people wanting to visit your blog so think of something relevant.  Your final URL will be yourchosenaddress.primaryblogger.co.uk so you might choose mrsrobinsonsclass.primaryblogger.co.uk or class5am.primaryblogger.co.uk for example
  5. That’s it.  You now have your own class blog!

Creating your first post

    1. Your admin page (where you can create and edit posts) can always be found at yourchoseaddress.primaryblogger.co.uk/wp-admin
    2. On the left hand menu, click on the arrow next to post to expand the menu, the select ‘add new post’
    3. Simply fill in the boxes – your post will need a title and some content.  You can leave it as simple as that though you can also add pictures or you can highlight text and add a hyperlink
    4. The only limit is your imagination, but there is nothing wrong with starting simply.
    5. When you’re ready, click publish and your post will be published for the world to see.
    6. You can either click the ‘view post’ button or go to your URL to see your post in all its glory.

What to blog about?

You and your class can blog about absolutely anything, but here are a few ideas to get you going:

  1. Our New Year’s Resolutions
  2. Our favourite memories from the Christmas holidays
  3. What we learnt last term / what we are going to learn about this term
  4. A showcase of pupils’ work from last term – words or pictures
  5. Pupils interviews with each other so that they can learn more about each other
  6. A collaborative story written by the class
  7. The role of a friend
  8. A diary entry by a historical figure the class are studying
  9. A recently learned mathematical or scientific principle explained by the class
  10. A description on the classroom and the class teacher

Happy Blogging!

If you have a class blog – or start one up as a result of this blog post, please leave a comment with the address so that readers of this blog can read and comment on your class blog too.  It all gets more exciting once you start getting some traffic!

If you like this, I will write more posts about class blogging, let me know what you would like to know more about so that I can make the posts as useful and as relevant as possible.

  • Debbie Chad

    My first graders love to blog. I use 2 safe sites for educational blogging. Both sites are easy for students/parents/teachers to use and are free. They are not blocked by our school district. I use Edmodo and Twiducate. Both sites allow for students and teachers to upload videos, pictures, add voice threads etc. I have had wonderful success with both. :)

  • It’s maybe not quite so easy at secondary level where you don’t have so much time with the students, but I set up a blog for my little Year 8 class (all with learning difficulties).

    They were thrilled with the comments they got for their work near the beginning of term, so it would be nice to get some on their more recent writing:

    http://8z5.posterous.com

    I’ve got quite a few of my sixth-formers blogging too: it’s a great way of giving students a real audience for their writing.

    • Thanks for posting a link to your fab blog; blogging seems to be great for special needs students as it breaks down a lot of barriers to communication as there are so many different options: text / video / audio / pictures.

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  • I have had the pleasure of commenting on class blogs & have been amazed at how children’s work has really taken off with the extended audience. Do let me know if you would like me to comment. It is great to have the option of an email subscription if possible. They are easy to set up when you are establishing your blog. gone on – have a go!

  • Pingback: 10 Reasons you should get your class blogging | The Creative Education Blog()

  • Hi,
    I’ve been blogging with my class this year, and love it. I definitely think kids are motivated to write when they have an authentic audience – one beyond their teachers and parents! My class blog is at http://5atheschool.edublogs.org/ and some of my students decided to get their own blogs and are here:

    http://sk8er10.edublogs.org/
    http://horsecrazy76.edublogs.org/
    http://clairebear10.edublogs.org/

    Any comments would be most appreciated!

    I find edublogs has great support, but it’s not free which can make it difficult. I know many people use kidblog.org which is free and very easy to set up. It doesn’t have the widgets etc that edublogs or wordpress has, which could be a good thing depending on your students. I also heard that posterous is a great way to blog, and is free and easy to use.

    Thanks, and happy blogging!
    Katy

    • Thanks for sharing your class blog and your pupils blogs: fantastic that they were so inspired that they wanted to set up independent blogs. I agree that it can be quite hard to decide on the right blogging platform. Especially because often when you’re at the point of setting up a blog, you don’t really know what you’re going to want to be able to achieve with it because they tend to evolve. All your blogs look great though. I’m impressed!

  • Your ” few fantastic class blogs” link appears to be broken. Other than that, great post. Thanks!

    • Thanks, I’ve removed the link which seems to have died since I wrote the post unfortunately. Thanks for pointing it out and I’m glad you enjoyed the post.

  • Pingback: 10 Ideas for Class Blog Posts | The Creative Education Blog()

  • I saved this as a favourite a while back and have just set up a class blog. I will be looking here for tips and suggestions once I have (hopefully) got it up and running.

    • So glad to hear that Anna! I’ve been thinking for a while about running a weekly post for class bloggers. Somewhere to share advice and ideas and link to recent posts to encouraging commenting on each other’s blogs too. Is it something you’d be interested in?

      • Yes definitely; I think the more opportunities to share blogs the better. Have been trying (unsuccessfully so far) to get colleagues and local schools to get into blogging. Will keep trying though (anyone managed to get others on board please share how you did it! Time is the reason mostly given)
        http://www.classash.primaryblogger.co,uk

        • Thanks Anna, hopefully the Class Blog challenge will provide clear and concise instructions, plenty of ideas and lots of reasons for people to get on board so maybe it will help you. Perhaps one week we could look at measuring the impact your class blog has had as results sometimes speak louder than anything else?

  • Pingback: Setting up your class blog using edublogs | The Creative Education Blog()

  • James Muir

    I’m about to embark on a class blog and was going to extend it to allow students to create their own blogs as well.
    The easiest to use interface I have found is blogger.com but I’ll look into posterous now as well. I’m also creating a twitter account (@7pdhpe02) for the class.
    I guess the worrying aspect is that the blogs are used appropirately and are safe and secure places for students. Any advice on how to keep student blogs safe would be most apprectiated.

    By the way – great blog

  • Class blogs are great for writing students because they work better when they are producing for publication. It’s also a great way to get the shy kids opening their work up to peer feedback.

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