The READING/BRACKNELL Pupil Premium Cluster Blogging Project has been running for 7 months and Head of School of Moorlands Primary School (Sian Randell) tracks progress so far in this informative guest blog post.
Name: Sian Randall
Role: Head of School – Moorland Primary School (Reading)
I was first introduced to blogging a year ago during a head conference; I heard David Mitchell speak about blogging and having never heard about blogging as an educational tool my interest was flared. I’m not one of those tech savvy people and I don’t keep up to date with the latest gadgets but the ‘educational potential’ of blogging really inspired me and it was a tool I could really see making a difference to our children at Moorlands in Reading (UK).
I began by setting up my own blog, immersing myself into the experience of it, and exploring how it could be used across the school taking the attitude ‘practise what you preach’. Quickly I fell head over heels with blogging and got very competitive, wanting to see the foot fall and globe tracker increase. Becoming more imaginative and creative with my posts; I now use my blog to track everything – SMSC, documenting school events, communicating with parents, online questionnaires and generally bragging about how wonderful Moorlands is.
Blogging took off at Moorlands rapidly following a training session lead by Mr Mitchell; the staff and children were enthusiastic and the benefits were quickly seen. Since the launch of the Year 6 blog their writing quality has increased -one particular piece of writing began the snowball; it got global recognition, getting multiple comments and tweets, some coming from research scientists in Australia! The year 6 children are now in a blogging frenzy; they are writing with purpose, are conscientious of their audience and want to write! Writing is not their only publication they now blog about everything from writing to art and PE.
With Year 6 establishing their blog with a huge audience and my ‘Head of school’ blog paving the way other year groups joined in. Year 3, Year 4 and Year 5 have now become well established and visited blogs- measurable impact has been made not only in writing but in all areas of the curriculum. Blogging has a way of giving all learning an audience, purpose and makes learning personal and meaningful; children simply buy into it! With myself and the teachers constantly raving about, publishing, tweeting and advertising the blogs, I can proudly say we are a blogging school and our standing in the global community has been raised and recognised.
We are soon launching the blogs across KS1 and EYFS and the children cannot wait, I am eagerly anticipating a similar impact as the use of a blog is not limited to simply ‘posting’ it can be used as an interactive educational tool within the classroom as well as outside it.
Blogging is becoming part of Moorlands’ identity, it is still in its infancy and there is so much more for us to explore and use. From February next year our blog site will become our main school website, the capabilities of it are endless and we are all keen to exploits it’s unique capabilities.
Visit Moorlands Primary School blog site here.