What is a blog?
A weblog, or blog for short, is a website on which items are posted on a regular basis. Some blogs will focus on particular themes, such as food or politics, or some will be like an online diary. A typical blog will combine text, images and links to other blogs or web pages.
Benefits of blogging
A blog can be great for children and some schools have already set up facilities for their pupils. Teachers find that blogging can help pupils develop confidence, improve their self expression and get a real sense of fulfilment from publishing their work. Here are some of the key things children can gain from blogging:
- They help children to develop confidence
- They improve their self expression
- Children get a real sense of fulfilment from publishing their work
- They help children to forge multicultural links
- Reading and writing skills can improve
- Children become more independent and creative
- Children can feel empowered by the knowledge that others know their views on a topic
Safety on the internet
While blogs are great it's important to remember to teach your children to be aware of safety on the internet.
- Buy internet safety software for your computer and use good filtering software.
- Sit down and discuss online safety with your children and come to an agreement about what activities are okay and what aren't
- Ensure they don't publish any personal information, including their private thoughts, full name (make sure they always use a blog name/nickname), age, address or school name
- Take care that they don't publish any photos of themselves, friends or family
- Make sure they password protect their blog so only people they invite can view it
- Check that you know what your children are doing online and who they are talking to
- Ask them to teach you how to use any applications you have never used before. You can keep track of what they’re doing if you don’t understand it.
- Put your family computer and any internet games consoles in a public room so you can monitor your children's online activities.