This morning I've been Skyping with Steve about this blog post that he wrote into response to John's post. Steve and I started pounding away on the keys, still wondering with John about the sustainability of student blogs.
Steve and I were wondering together about how many of the SI-er's will continue blogging after today, after the push to inquire in those spaces as a part of a course is over. And I'm wondering about my own blogging over the past two weeks. I have really enjoyed "having" to blog. I say "having to" because it wasn't fair to ask the teachers participating in SI to do it if we weren't going to do it ourselves.
We are wondering together if part of the motivation to blog in classroom spaces is the immediacy of response. It's part of the grade and we offer that space in class, so response definitely happens. I'll admit too, that I do really like the way blogger shows me how many views a post has gotten. So maybe it's not even the responses that drive my motivation to blog, but just knowing someone is listening?
I'm going to be using blogs for the first time this fall in my first year writing course and I'm thinking at the moment that I'm going to model that very much after the way we've used them in SI as place to think through inquiry projects with the rest of us. They will also have daybooks of course, so I'm thinking of the blog as one step away from personal, for the self writing. I'm thinking of them as places to put the messy pondering of inquiry out into the world to find others to inquire with us. That's not "polished" publication though. I've dealt with that here by using a "messy, drafty thinking" label.
Like Steve, I'm trying to think of a way to connect our thinking up with the conversations we are inquiring into. So, I'm imagining a "polished for now" (because you can't really "finish" a piece of inquiry writing in a semester) or two. I'm imagining that these pieces will get tweeted into conversation with others outside of our classroom.
And I'm really, really interested in the co-op blogs that John mentioned in his response to Steve. I'm imagining these as multi-author blogs and thinking that may be just the thing to take some pressure off of some writers and create small communities within the large class community. I'd like to hear a lot more about that.