Yes To School Blogs.
David Carter-Tod found a very interesting blog called School Blog or Not. Its author, Bill, is trying to answer the question “should Bryant Elementary implement its new web presence using Web log tools?” by examining school web sites, reviewing them, and exploring the issues that surround such a decision. Reading through Bill’s thoughts, it’s obvious how blogging can help schools and school librarians.
#1 – “I’ve created a school site review blog for deconstructing other school web sites. Purely my own opinionated views but I wanted to keep track of them. I think I’m now seeing some patterns and uncovering some best practices. Overall the best sites also are the sites with most prominent news – at least, I don’t think I’m imagining this correlation.”
#2 – “I admire the accomplishment of the obviously hard-working folks who contribute to the ETHS web site. But I’d love to find a way to get there faster, cheaper, and better. I’m more and more convinced that a Weblog-centric implementation architecture with an RSS news feed information distribution mentality is the way to go.”
#3 – “My preliminary take is that, while each parent, student, and teacher definitely will want to access Bryant Web information in different ways this does not need to be implemented by a personalization system withint the Bryant Web site itself, given that “deep” personalization isn’t required. The primary need appears to be “I want to see the info that’s relevant to me” choices which the news feed features built-in to the Web log model already deal with. For example, I want to stay on top of Mrs. Paulson’s Kindergarten class, the Chess Club, as well as school info – but I will be able to simply subscribe to the appropriate Web logs, aggregating them in my news reader of choice, or getting email updates. And, even more simply, bookmarking as favorites the relevant three “nav entry” spots for my needs.”
#4 – “I find it interesting that – if one presumes that Web log authoring will say be built-in to Office 2004 and Web log server technology will ship bundled with Windows Server that the question of “should Bryant use Web log tools in creating its web presence?” could almost be a non-sequiter like saying ‘should Bryant use word processing tools in creating its printed documents?’ “
There are lots of other great links at this site, so this is a great “weblogs in education” blog to track. And if you’re at a SLS school library, please give me a call or drop me an email and we can talk about this further. I can even set up a test instance of a blog so that you can get a feel for this yourself.[The Shifted Librarian]