A space to reflect on my readings and musings, scattered and rescattered


Beware the Blogger-Bots & the Tum Tum Tree...

So I was just sitting here thinking I should post something new to my blog. But I couldn't figure out what. Then, I remembered my beautiful 12th grade students who modeled the kind of writing I recommended all week. That is, they modeled the kind of writing you just do, the kind that happens when you put hands to keyboard and just write. Everyone asked, "So really, I can write about whatever I want? Okay. [Moment of breath] But why? Why are we doing this?" My response is to keep explaining (read preaching) that blogging is like going to gym and lifting weights. It works those writing muscles. A dorky, imperfect metaphor, I know, but a useful one.

So here's what happens when I write about my day...

Today was an interesting day. We did college prep work and lots of students made up work from days/weeks/projects they'd missed. I was struck by how little work I was grading students on for the second Marking Period. It feels like the weeks flew by and I'm wondering how we can accomplish more in our time together for the next 6 weeks. Now that a good chunk of the college applications are out of the way, I'm hoping we'll be able to pull of more research and writing.

One of the things that sticks out in my mind about today is the number of lost passwords (and usernames...) and frustration over blocked accounts. I'm learning that the teacherly instructions, "Write however you want, in whatever style you want. Just write." have ramifications beyond this liberal, linguistically-minded teacher's intentions. I just wanted to see thinking typed on the screen. And in the process I wanted to start building a writing community. The blogs did get many of us writing as a community more and, I think, reduced some of the stress and constriction of the blank page. Pretty cool. But "Write whatever style/language" got a more than a couple of accounts blocked by the ever-watchful blogger-bots. Oh, little robots we mean no harm. Cuz we writ3 161 [knowledge] of Lyfe? Come on blogger-bots, lighten up. Sheesh. Just cuz we spell with numbers and do in non-traditionally! I thought that's what blogs were for--a place to "represent" or doodle however you want. And then publish it. Guess there are limitations.

Thankfully we figured out how to get those accounts "reviewed" so that we didn't have to start over like we feared. Still, a lot of frustrated people. I'm kinda okay with that though. 'Cause we learn through it. Who knew there were blogger-bots? Okay, so a lot of my readers knew that. No jokes out how I should not be enrolled in a grad school program with technology in the title. No laughing. We learned together. And I wouldn't have asked them to write in Standard English, even knowing what I now know. I think a break from it does a writer good. We'll save the "proper" stuff for the "proper" place. Don't get me wrong, there is a "proper" place for formal discourse, and I want students to learn it, I'm just pretty sure it's not on here. I mean, I was getting ready to post a photo of my new hair style...until I realized I have big bags under my eyes and I don't want to snap my photo! LOL

Nite and happy early Thanksgiving. I, for one, can't wait for the pumpkin pie.



At 8:36 PM, Blogger Adam Collado said...

Recant an epic conversation that was had a month okay:
Ms. Awesome-English-Teacher: "Hey Mr. Awesome-Computer-Tech, I was thinking about having my kids get started on writing their own blogs. What would be a good blog publishing site to get started with that?"

Mr. Awesome-Computer-Tech: "Well, Ms. Awesome-English-Teacher, while you can use sites such as Blogger, Tumblr, and other great blog publishing services, I have taken it upon myself to make use of the expensive webhosting services that we purchased, and installed the schools very own blog publishing service with WordPress! The benefits of using our service are many.

For one, you as the teacher will have much easier access to their blogs, as I can give you admin privileges, which will bestow upon you the awesome powers of which only admins can wield. These powers include the ability to create accounts, block accounts, and most importantly, reset passwords! I should warn you, your students WILL forget their passwords on a regular basis. This will result in a loss of time as well as focus on getting their work done. Outside of this, you can also go create links within their blogs, so they’ll all have access to the writings of their fellow classmates!

Other wonderful benefits of using our own blog service is the ability to control content. You’re probably not going to do that, but I should note that other blog publishing sites will be monitoring the content on their servers, and enforcing their EULA’s (End User License Agreement). Some works may get deleted from looking similar to spam. And with the way some of these kids write….

In any case, I would highly recommend using our WordPress service! It provides great flexibility since we control it, easier access to accounts for administrative purposes, more control over content, and much more. What do you think??

Ms. Awesome(?)-English-Teacher: “Hmmmm…. I think I’ll just go with Blogger!”

Mr. Awesome-Computer-Guy: “You sure, even after everything I sa…”

Ms. Not-So-Awesome-English-Teacher: “No no, I’ll just go with Blogger. But thanks for your input Mr. Awesome-Computer-Guy!”
And what’s the moral of this sad tale? Always listen to your Awesome Computer Guy, or you may find yourself not so awesome anymore.

And yes, Google has a blogging bot that monitors Blogger! Or do you think I enjoy all those blog posts from sexygurl69 telling me about how she would just love to chat with me via webcam? ^_~

At 1:08 AM, Blogger td said...

Don't rub it in...

At 9:54 PM, Blogger Extra Un-Ordinary said...

your link to me doesn`t work. =/

At 10:54 PM, Blogger td said...

oooh, thanks for reminding me, i'd noticed but forgotten to change it. i straightened up the html code...


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