I have recently sent home information on Blogging and the permission forms. I have received some push back from some parents, and rightfully so, they want to make sure their children are safe in this online forum. Some of the concerns are: the long term affects of an online presence at such a young age, students’ lack of understanding that what they say online will always be there, lack the basic skill of “writing with pencil and paper”, exposure to the world, to name a few.
We realize as educators, exploring this new realm for sharing information that we are not just letting students run free on the blogging platform but instead are doing a great deal of educating our students about online safety, thinking before posting and how to navigate this online world in a responsible and safe manner.
I have had telephone conversations with some parents as well as face -to-face conversations to hear their concerns. I have begun to wonder if there is more I need to do to educate parents on creating digital portfolios with students as well as the steps that are being taken to ensure students are safe in this online forum.
Have any others come across this resistance and how did you deal with it? Also can anyone recommend top quality websites that I can obtain info from to share or send parents to in order to help them better understand the benefits of blogging with children?
Thank you in advance for any insight or suggestions you may have.
4 thoughts on “Push back”
This is definitely a concern I had also anticipated from my community, and I imagine there are other teachers in our project group who are experiencing the same push-back. During our Meet the Teacher I took the opportunity to discuss “blogging” with every parent who attended. This gave me the opportunity to answer any questions or concerns they had. Although I read that you have had some phone conversations with parents and a few face-to-face meetings, maybe hosting an information night for parents is an option worth exploring if you have a large group with questions and/or concerns. I have added your question to our shared Agenda for next month’s meeting. As a group I think it would be useful to create a working document that address many of these concerns with links to resources that support our blogging as a tool for learning. This document could then in turn be shared with parents in our communities. Thoughts?
I have started a resource list below with some articles and sites that I have found useful. Please reply to this thread with your ideas and links!
NOTE: I had to go back and delete the http:// or https:// in front of each link above before posting this comment. Edublogs does not allow http:// to be included in shared links in an effort to avoid spam. FYI
Coincidentally I just read this article that I think speaks to why some people are hesitant to use technology:
What Our Fear Actually Inhibits: georgecouros.ca/blog/archives/4801
This is a real and important issue for many. This is a very interesting video I found on the topic. Maybe something to share with parents to open up the discussion about an online presence.
I have only had one family with concerns so far. They have had a negative experience with their child’s image being used inappropriately in the past. We are going to make sure that he doesn’t use his name on his blog or includes any pictures of himself (and I will too). Hopefully, this will prove to be a positive online experience for him.