Monday, 7 March 2016

First week using blog for students

Me and Prof. David are teaching a paper together called Concrete Poetry. This paper is about how to relate together the concept of a place in Manukau, which is the area where the campus is located by using elements of visual poetry. They have to develop along the semester a publication, a series of three posters and a 3D object, and these elements have to connect a place in Manukau to a poem (or lyrics for a song, story, quote).
During the first week we told them that they have to reflect the process and post these reflections into a blog, and we encourage them to use Wordpress, cause Thomas told us that this would be easy. Among 15 students only two have used blogs before, and most of them find strange our request. They did not complaim but they were a little reticent.
Again, using Thomas suggestion, we change the assessment system including part of the marking to these reflections on the blog (10%) and explained to them. After that we had an poetry activity in the classroom, they had to write a poem and then create a visual poem with it. The activity worked great, and all the student took part and produced some interesting poems.
Late that night I checked the blogs and surprisingly most of them posted their work, even more, they publish their poems and wrote some reflections. I think our first week was positive and they may find blogging a great way to reflect the development of their work. Nevertheless I also think for us, the lecturers, it is a great way to follow the students progress.