Wrapping Up the Comment Challenge

Like Sue Waters I’m trying to finish up my homework on the Comment Challenge at the last minute! I had a five day wekend last weekend and I really had planned on completing many of the tasks at that time. But we ended up having nice weather and I chose to spend much of my time outside and really took the time to just relax and rest up in preparation for the busy and crazy month of June.

So, I’m a little more than behind on the challenge!

Day 17 Five in Five

I’ve thought about this one and even started it but have not completed it. It takes me too long to find posts that I want to comment on and to form my comments. I will keep this in mind and still work towards completing it in the future.

Day 18 Anaylze the Comments on Your Blog-Didn’t do this one.

Day 19 Respond to a Commenter on Your Blog

I learned about this from Sue Waters soon after I began blogging. I appreciate people taking time to respond to my comments so I try hard to respond to people who take the time to comment on my blog.

Day 20 Three Links Out

I actually did this one twice. The first time I didn’t really care for any of the blogs the links took me to. So I tried it a second time with much better luck. I started out at Ed Tech Workshop, one of my favorite blogs partly because we experience many of the same frustrations and because I enjoy her posts and her voice. From there I went to Clif’s Notes. It was an interesting blog because he writes about a variety of topics. He has started a meme on professional development, it will be interesting to see how that unfolds. From there I went to Tech Happy, or I thought I did, as I went back to double check I can’t find the link, hmmm not sure what I did there but anyway I liked this site. I enjoy reading about new tools to use in the classroom and what people think about them. I’ll be back there to check out all of his great looking links. Then my next stop from there was Technolote. This is actually a page for language teachers. However, I found the discussion on IWBs interesting. I use mine in the lab mainly for modeling for the students. However, this fall I’m teaching a class on how classroom teachers could use it and we might be getting some for a couple of classrooms. So, I have a lot of learning to do this summer regarding how to get the teachers using it and more importantly, in my opinion, how to get the students using it.

I think Three Links Out was one of my favorite activities. When I first started an RSS feed I used blog rolls to find more blogs to follow. But once I hit the point that I wasn’t keeping up with them I quit using blog rolls. I often follow links in blog posts but for a change it was fun to go back to the blog rolls and explore and of course now I have a new one added to my over flowing feeder!

Day 21Make a Recomendation

That was fairly easy. A second grade teacher just joined the Elementary Tech Teachers Ning. I went to her Second Grade Teacher’s Blog, and it just spills over with her enthusiasm for using tech in the classroom. I suggested her students might like the National Geographic Filmmaker site.

Day 22 Highlight a Favorite Comment

I am happy with all the comments that I have received. Everyone that takes time out their busy schedules to read my rambling thoughts and then takes a moment to post a comment is a favorite in my book.

Day 23 What Makes a Great Comment

My advice-Ask a question-Add a personal reflection that adds to the post

Day 24 Comment on a Blog Written in a Foreign Language-Sorry I didn’t do this one.

Day 25-Take a Break

Day 26-Explore Other Ways to Comment-I didn’t do this one either. I do want to go and look at some of the ideas though.

Day 27-What do You Communicate About Your Personal Brand Through Commenting

This is not something I had really given much thought to before. I have made some changes recently mainly due to discussions on Twitter and other places. I started out using the name Hockeymom1788, I still use it on Twitter, but in most places I have begun to change it. First, I switched to Elementary Tech Teacher and now I’m using my first name, not too many Nedras around, although one on Twitter did contact me! I also started out with a bird picture for my avatar, then switched to a picture of me but it was from a distance so you really couldn’t see me. Finally, I had my daughter take some pictures of me and I now use a close up photo on most sites. I think this is showing that I’m becoming more comfortable having my name/picture out there and I do want people to know me. I think adding my last name will be my next step.

Day 28-What’s Your Commenting Strategy?

I don’t have a strategy. I read the article and didn’t care for it. I’m not interested in being a top blogger/commenter.

Day 29-Write a Commenting Guide for Students

I like this idea but since the students at my school can’t blog and in the lab I don’t have them reading other blogs I’ll hold off on this activity. Hopefully we’ll be able to blog in the future and at that point it’s something I’ll definelty want to do and I’ll be looking for posts from this challenge for good ideas!

Day 30-How Can You Use What You’ve Learned About Commenting To Change Your Teaching Practices?

Hmmm, I’m not sure. I’ll have to give this some more thought.

Day 31-What Were Your Top Five Lessons From the Challenge?

What did you personally gain from the Challenge? I think the biggest thing I learned was to ask questions to try and get a conversation started. This is one thing that I will definitely continue to work on using on a more regular basis.

What did you gain professionally? I’m hoping to introduce blogging to two fourth grade classes with the help of two teachers next year. Before we introduce it to the students the other teachers need to become bloggers first. I’m waiting until the end of the school year to give them their assignment-start reading blogs and start your own this summer. I feel we can’t have kids blogging if we don’t do it ourselves and have some understanding of it. Through this project I’ll be able to give them some tips that I didn’t have when I began. I’ll post more about this later.

Is this something you’d do again? Yes, I feel I learned something and it’s flexible. I could fit it into my time schedule and I could skip assignments. 😉

Share with us your Top 5 Comment Challenge Lessons and what you think you’ll do differently now that you’ve been through the past 31 days.

1-Ask more questions

2-Make more recommendations and ask for recommendations, when appropriate, in a post.

3-Continue to use coComment. This has helped me keep track of how often I’m commenting and is a gentle reminder to get out there and leave some comments.

4-I’ve learned that the more I comment the more comments I receive back.

5-The toughest post and I only did it once was commenting on a post I didn’t agree with.

6-An enjoyable part of the challenge was looking for a blog outside of education and discovering some garden blogs. Unfortunately I have not been back to them. I guess that’s one more thing to add to the summer to do list!

5 thoughts on “Wrapping Up the Comment Challenge

  1. What frustrated me was I had been writing that post since last Sunday (26 May) as had planned it to be my Week 3 summary but life got in my way so ended up completing last night. Meanwhile have absolutely no idea of how to answer Day 30 so am pleased it also stumped you because I thought it was just me. So that one may be in the too hard basket and will finish with a reflection.

    Totally understand the whole issue of online identity. Media highlights the negative aspects of social networking so it does take time to feel comfortable with the whole idea of using your own name online. Also Sue Wyatt does make a very valid point that our students aren’t allowed to use their real names so she feels it is important for her to model that she doesn’t use her name.

    PS we weren’t the only ones finishing off our homework 🙂

  2. I still have my homework to finish up, Sue. Hope you will allow one day’s grace with us “hard working teachers”.

  3. Sue, thanks for stopping by and taking the time to read this long post! Next time I will try harder not to get so far behind and avoid the lengthy post! I worked on it in bits and pieces all day long. I’m glad we weren’t the only ones finishing up at the last minute.

    Miss W-I checked out your blog and you’re almost done. You’ve done a much better job at keeping up than I did. Get it done and then have another Cadbury!

  4. “Continue to use coComment. This has helped me keep track of how often I’m commenting and is a gentle reminder to get out there and leave some comments.”

    Nedra, I too use coComment is this way, as a gentle reminder to comment more. Also, I have put the widget on my blog so that my readers can get exposure to other blogs that I read and get a better understanding of who I am … and who my blogosphere buddies are. Guess what? You just got coCommented! Enjoy your blog .. Thanks ..Frank

  5. Thanks for stopping by Frank. I like the cocomment widget on your blog. I’ll add that to my blog soon. Great suggestion. I miss your faces on your blog, they always made me smile!

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