Although I read a lot of blogs, I've never attempted to post an Edublog Award nomination before. I feel generally incapable of bestowing the title of "best"....at least for the most part. I'm not sure if that's just a personality thing or if I don't pay enough attention to what I'm reading, but what has moved me to do this in 2011 is a few of the student bloggers I am working with in 5th grade. Out of the class of 15 are 3 who are really putting extra effort into their blogs. I would really like to nominate each of them for "best student blog" because I think that they all deserve recognition. But "best" isn't about recognizing all the good ones, is it? So, I have thought long and hard, and I have decided which student blog is getting my nomination. And while I'm at it, I thought I'd try to sift through the other excellent blogs I read to give a nod to some that really speak to me.
- Best individual blog- Tech Transformation Maggie Hos-McGrane tackles many of the deeper issues surrounding edtech that I grapple with, and she does it in a style that is concise, to the point and always makes me think.
- Best individual tweeter- @courosa He shares a lot of good stuff. He seems to make a genuine effort to really connect with a wide range of people. He's helpful and has a good sense of humor. Those are the things I look for in a "best" tweeter.
- Best student blog- Sarah S Despite having several students who I feel have poured heart and soul into their blogs this year, I had to choose just one to nominate. I chose Sarah S. because her writing is excellent, she covers a wide range of topics, and she illustrates almost every post, creating many of the images herself. Sarah is a very quiet girl, and I have enjoyed getting to know her better through reading her blog. We blog in class twice a week, but Sarah puts in extra effort, working on her blog at home to make it shine, both in written content as well as other items of interest, such as polls, Wordles and widgets. I am proud to nominate this blog for an Edublog award, and I hope to bring attention and visitors to this high-quality example of a student blog.
- Best ed tech / resource sharing blog- Langwitches What I appreciate about this blog, and what I think distinguishes it from other ed tech/resource sharing blogs is that blogger, Silvia Tolisano, doesn't just share a resource- she documents each and every step she takes in using tech resources with students, including step-by-step how-to's and wonderful photographs. Not only have I learned a ton from reading this blog, I often use it as a working resource, going back to search and re-read, as I'm planning lessons or trying to implement ideas of my own.
- Best teacher blog- Elementary My Dear, Or Far From It I like this blog because it's real. I appreciate the honest self-reflection from first grade teacher, Jen Orr, who tells it like she experiences it. This year she is writing a series of posts about her students, in an effort to spend time thinking about what makes each student unique and special. That's the kind of teacher she is.
- Best free web tool Google Apps for Education We couldn't do many of the things we do at our school if not for Google Apps. Just having student emails allows us to access many other web tools.