Saturday, October 3, 2009

Week 1 Comment

Website URL for Brandi Martin's blog:

Brandi's Original Blog Posting:

I am frustrated because suddenly My school district is blocking Blog sites just as I decided to integrate it into my classes. Here is an email exchange, followed by the videos I sent in response.

-----Original Message-----
From: Brandi Martin []
Sent: Monday, September 28, 2009 4:16 PM
To: Jeff *******
Cc: Luanne *****
Subject: Re: blocked site

I am wondering why all of the blogging sites are blocked. Last year I gave my AP class a summer assignment to blog about photography during the summer, and since that time, most of the main blog sites are blocked. It gave the reason as social networking. I wonder how many people really read blogs to meet others? There is a privacy setting on some blogs, if it is student privacy that is the concern.

I gave them this assignment because of what I'm studying in my master's degree. Writing in a public way (even if the public isn't very large!) adds gravity to the assignment, and students take it more seriously. In addition, students can comment on each other's work, instead of just the teacher. Here is my page that links to all of their blogs, so you get an idea.

That page isn't blocked, but most of their blogs are. If some or all of these could be unblocked, that would be great. Please let me know either way.

Brandi Martin
Art Instructor
West Aurora High School

We will not be unblocking any blogging sites. We cannot control who has access to these sites on an individual basis.

Jeff *******
Coordinator of Information Services
West Aurora School District 129

Ok, but why are they blocked at all is my question?

Brandi Martin
Art Instructor
West Aurora High School

My Response to Brandi's Blog Posting:

That seems to be a reoccurring problem as I work on research for my own thesis. I'm not sure if technology coordinators are either too lazy or "Luddite" in nature when it comes to incorporating technology in the classroom. There are several work-arounds for this problem, but it varies from school to school. Here are some good websites on helping teachers get around this problem:,130061733,339295247,00.htm

I understand that the filtering software has its purpose and place in the classroom, but technology coordinators and school districts will need to loosen their grip on the flow of information. In the end, it is just hurting the students and their education.

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