P-16 Summer Summit LogoThis week, on June 15, I am presenting at the P-16 Summer Summit at Cleveland State Community College, our sister institution down I-75 a little ways.

My topic is about this little site where you are right now. I will be sharing a bit about the history of blogging at Pellissippi State, our current setup, some of its uses and some plugins make things easier for folks behind and in front of the scenes.

So, here are some resources for those who attended (or just WISHED they had attended) my presentation.

 

 

First Up, Blogging Options

  • We use WordPress here at Pellissippi State (after migrating from Movable Type and through WordPress Mu)
  • If you don’t want to host your own, you can try Blogger (from Google)
  • WordPress.com (hosted WordPress blogs)
  • 21 Classes (designed for teacher created student blogs but free version is limited to 10 students)
  • Class Blogmeister (a free service from the Landmark Project)
  • Tumblr (super easy microblogging site)

Agreements/Terms of Use

At Pellissippi State, we use our Computer Terms of Use for the blog site.  If you want to take a look at some Blogger’s Contracts, here are some:

Teacher’s First also has a comprehensive (albeit a bit dated) site on creating what they term “gated” blogs for students in K-12. You can go through the Blog Basics site  step by step or jump the parts of interest.

Plugins

If you choose to host your own WordPress, you will want to incorporate plugins into the site to make things easier for both administrators and your bloggers.

Pellissippi State’s plugin list for its users

Some “behind the scenes” plugins that are not listed there include:

  • Active Directory (LDAP) Authentication – allows users to use same username/password as on campus.  We use WPMU LDAP. There is another one listed in the WordPress plugin directory – Simple LDAP
  • Usage Plugins – easy ways to tell what themes and plugins are being used.  Theme Info and Plugin Stats
  • New Blog Defaults – customize what a new blog will look like such as default theme, posting, comment and a few other tidbits. We use New Blog Default.
  • Alternative Presentation of Themes – we have over 100 themes installed for our users. The Rollover Themes List plugin provides a simpler way to view more themes on a page with less strain on your server
  • More Privacy Options – allows your bloggers more options for making their blogs as open or as private as they want.

 

Supporting your Users

More Resources

SupportBlogging.com – a wiki for educators who are interested in learning how blogging in education can be used and supported.

 

Finally, a continually updating list of resources

This is from the RSS feed of my Delicious account with the most recent 15 links that I have tagged “blogging”.

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