My 8-year-old son has started blogging and loving it! He has been reading my blog and he liked the idea of sharing his views, drawings and stories with people.
I thought blogging would be good for my son because he is constantly reading and writing his own stories, so why not type them up online and get some feedback from friends and family. Blogging has also been a great learning opportunity for him, some things that he’s learned are:
- how to use a new Web2.0 tool. He is getting very good at navigating around a new app and figuring out how things work.
- how to compare the usability of different options, such as the differences between using wordpress and edublogs
- the importance of internet privacy, digital footprint and online writing etiquette
- how to use the Snipping Tool to capture images on the screen, save them and then upload to a post
First we tried creating a “Private” and invite only blog which was attached to my wordpress account. Interestingly we found that some family members had difficulty logging in, even though they had been invited personally via email. Another issue with going Private on wordpress is that invited people need to create a wordpress account before they can read a private blog….a bit of a hassle for some. The other weird, technical glitch, was that every time we updated the pages, viewed them and clicked on each post the Stats hits increased! The owner of the account shouldn’t be increasing stats so that was a bit strange. Also, the blog was Private but you had to go into every individual post and mark it as Private since it was set as Public by default.
In the end we decided to go over to Edublogs instead. Compared to using WordPress there were less Themes, no Follow You widget, and no stats for the Free blog sites; bummer! His edublog is Public but blocks search engines. Edublog does not allow “Adult Content” since it’s focus is for Education. There is No exposure to other blogs, which is probably why there is no Follow Blog (or perhaps this is kept for when you pay for the Pro package).
Many schools have tight Internet access restrictions due to “Adult Content” issues, so Edublog is more likely to be accessible at schools since it does not allow this type of content.