It’s easy to think that all blogs are gossip driven. Perez Hilton rules supreme. But most major news publications today run a significant amount of blog based content. And this content is well written. Whether these are blogs from The Chronicle of Higher Education or The New Yorker, the goal is always the same: find good writing on interesting topics that can reach a high school audience. Consider your goal with using blogs as supplemental texts as twofold. First, you want to provide students choice and engage otherwise unwilling readers. Second, you want students to practice assessing and evaluating textual arguments in a variety of mediums. Don’t forget to examine yesterday’s post in order to peruse lesson plans for writing and annotating ideas in regards to reading blogs as “texts” in the classroom.
In an effort to help “jump” start this process I’ll highlight science and technology blogs today, current events/popular cultures blogs tomorrow. My “picks” are simply a starting point for you as you make the decision to implement more blog as supplemental reading.
The New York Times is an amazing resource for blogs. Be sure to checkout their index before beginning any blog reading assignment.
Science & Technology Blogs
The New York Times
From apps to cyber security to the online presence of celebrities, this blog has a little bit of everything for the student interested in technology, business and policy. Often posts even discuss big picture implications and the role of technology in society.
The Washington Post
This blog focuses on stories about technology, specifically “gadgets.” The writing is easy to read and posts include video and image which allows students the challenge and satisfaction of working in different textual mediums.
These posts are written by parents about everything from poetry to film to tech. Since the posts are written by a variety of authors, studying voice throughout is a great focus.
Videos and image populate this blog. Posts range from nature to outer space offering a variety of lenses through which students can read and experience any element of science blog writing that might engage them.
A personal favorite, this blog deals with national security, technology and current events. Interested in safety at the London Olympics? Concerned about how military technology adapts? The posts are incredibly engaging even for an English teacher.
We’ve highlighted Krulwich Wonders before. It’s a great blog of just about everything you could ever want including, but not limited to, the science of language, architecture, nature, etc. It will easily become a student favorite.
Posts about tech on this blog range from information about start-up companies to the ethics of tech in modern culture. Very readable and engaging for any student.
All of the contributors for this blog are comprised of professors with science specialties, as well as one philosopher. The posts are engrossing and deal with a variety of big picture arguments that are rooted in science and philosophy.