‘I got my Year 1 class blogging – and it has converted their writing competencies’

This number one teacher explains how getting youngsters to make a contribution to a class weblog has had a widespread impact on literacy rankings
“Has Doreen been on but?”

That’s the shout that starts an offevolved maximum of my Year 1 lessons each day. The name is accompanied by youngsters running into the elegance to see if they have any more flag hits or feedback on our magnificence blog.


Doreen refers to an academic representative from Australia (@doreen_blyth), who visits our elegance blog regularly and praises the paintings that the kids submit independently.

Let me be clear: this isn’t always me writing a blog for our elegance, this is the scholars themselves writing. Five- and 6-12 months-olds with a blog? Yes, it would sound like too younger an age, however, it really works and it has had a considerable effect on literacy in our school.

It commenced due to the fact writing had been on our college development plan for a long time and we felt we wished a brand new method to inspire kids to write independently. We felt that running a blog provided an opportunity to get children writing in a non-threatening way (often on their very own phrases).

Children running a blog independently
We determined we wished some help getting matters commenced, so we recruited David Mitchell (@deputymitchell). He got her into college and released the idea of running a blog with an entire-faculty team of workers meeting. It was at this assembly that each elegance had their very own blog installation, and workforce was given a novice’s manual to running a blog.

I became in Year 2 at the time and couldn’t wait to get the magnificence up and walking at the blog. But final 12 months I moved into Year 1. Would the youngsters be able to make it paintings at one of this young age?

My colleague Sarah White and I had been decided to strive. We wanted to create a balanced list of competencies and skills between instructor posts and people from the kids themselves, in order that youngsters had a degree of possession of their weblog. Both Sarah and I felt strongly that age could no longer be a barrier and that we ought to get the children running a blog independently from the age of 5. We firmly believed that if we taught the kids how to blog, in the same way, we taught them how to keep in mind their quantity bonds etc, then it is able to be achieved.

So what does running a blog appear like in Year 1?


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By growing a form template at the weblog, we were capable of providing a few shape for the writing online children when composing a blog publish. We have used bureaucracy to create diary entries, recounts and ebook evaluations in addition to many other things. Children are directed to write into positive containers and given prompts about what to write if needed.

Love of writing
Children write on the weblog at some point of a number training, and, curiously, the normally reluctant writers are often the first to ask for an iPad to write down their personal put up or to leave a remark for writing a book someone else. Children depart encouraging remarks for each other, as well as making guidelines on how to improve a post.

What has been terrific to see is that the kids aren’t simply blogging at faculty; they may be additionally going home and running a blog, too. It’s notable to look their enthusiasm develop and we are excited writing paper to hold our blogging adventure this 12 months.

So what’s it done for English in Year 1?

At the start of the 12 months (and as much as Christmas), I had a massive percentage of children nevertheless not able to get admission to the curriculum. However, with the help of the blog, kids who had been manner underneath the expected fashionable soon started writing and showing a love for it, too. By the give up of the 12 months, I had youngsters who had advanced from Pivots 6 right up to 1 anticipated.

The engagement and love of writing have been a pride to watch, as kids have transferred learn how to blog beginners abilities from the blog to their class paintings. And, across the school, the blog has improved engagement and has commenced having a fine impact on writing attainment levels, too.

Whilst it’s miles an awful lot less complicated to criticize Pat Robertson, it seems a great deal ordinary to peer fault inside the attempt International, Non secular and human right Agencies have led in blogging for money for beginners condemning the Ugandan Bill; however, both are astringent reminder of the imposition of foreign values and perception on a collection of human beings. Pat Robertson’s remarks are colonialist at fine, at the same time as the condemnation of the Ugandan regulation are married with offspring of an expansionist worldview.

To better understand the source of those accusations, we must take attention for the topics wherein they evolve, and the similarities with Problems to which they resemble that have proved to be detrimental: Democracy and Christianity.

South African Bishop Desmond Tutu as soon as stated: “whilst the missionaries came to Africa they had the Bible and we had the land. They said, ‘Allow us to pray.’ We closed our eyes. whilst book reading blog we opened them we had the Bible and that they had the land.”

Christianity and Slavery are sadly related for the wrong motive, whilst missionary paintings and colonization are all the time linked to each other. Despite the fact that 40% of the African population is Christian, many still exercise it as a remnant of the colonial technology and easily contain it alongside indigenous perception structures. It isn’t uncommon to see an African going to church on Sunday, but placing his or her belief in traditional secular leaders for essential topics. even as there are many committed Christians in Africa, with each generation that passes, Christianity turns into a cultural element imported from an overseas way of life much like the Opera, and no longer necessarily in tune with the social realities.


The greater Africans apprehend about the manner Christianity made its way in Africa, the extra they’ll are seeking for its authenticity to either include it for what it sincerely is, or will reject it as a tool used by colonial invaders to subdue the continent. From Christianity to political and financial regulations, latest Africa has learned to view Western fashions and recommendations with vast suspicions, to some extent wherein the even humanitarian resource is perceived as a covert exploitative enterprise.

When one considers the resume that Christianity has had in Africa, and the relation that ensued with individuals who professed it, the growing dissatisfaction with Western-based totally democratic principles is comprehensible. After nearly 50 years of following the West prescribed pills to solve its problems, Africa is, in the end, figuring out that Western solution is not one-size fits all fashions; a fashion that has favored the increase of trade with China.

21 century Africa is embracing the belief that its achievement and boom wishes to be homegrown, and is becoming increasingly more wary of inclinations that reminisce colonial generation practices.

In phrases of Religion, Islam is absolutely in the same boat as Christianity in terms of outside originated religions, yet, it’s far Christianity that is witnessing a wave of the version in cult bureaucracy that mixes traditional Christian dogma with indigenous African beliefs. Locating its very own destiny is probably the African enterprise of the 21 century and Africans aimed to achieve this their very own way.

It isn’t unexpected, alternatively quite revealing that U.S.president Barack Obama observed useful to mention it in the course of his first visit to Africa, in Accra, Ghana. Obama said, “every nation offers lifestyles to democracy in its very own way, and in step with its personal traditions.”


Obama additionally introduced that “The united states will no longer are looking for to impose any device of government on any other state – the vital fact of democracy is that every country determines its personal future”.

While one is able to have a look at and realize those new traits, it’ll be simpler to look why Pat Robertson’s remarks, not content to be absolutely bare of Ancient accuracy, are genuinely insensitive, untimely and loaded with washed up colonial self-inflated righteousness ‘I got my Year 1 class blogging – and it has converted their writing competencies’.

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About the Author: Kathryn J. Riddell