Help needed, Twitterpeeps

So, I need to think through my use of the student blog idea I wrote about earlier.

I have some learning outcomes:

1.  Students will create a space for a professional digital footprint

  • Students will devlop digital citizenship skills.
  • Students will understand the idea of different registers (spaces, voice, content). Although they should be responsible for all content they post, they need to understand the difference between personal and professional.
  • Students could observe their own progress by creating a portfolio of their work as they move through high school, taking pictures of and possibly blogging about their work, skills, interests.
  • Students will have the opportunity to see how writing can help focus their planning and ideas.

2. Students will have a Genius Hour every week, sometimes more, in which they will investigate and report on an area of interest for them.

  • Students will learn how independent study works
  • Students will engage with a passion or interest to learn new skills or information
  • Students will learn different ways to report to a class on this learning

The blog can be one way to report on their work, and to provide evidence to me that they are engaged in the learning. In discussion with another colleague, we decided that students would either pass or fail this segment. They were engaged and showed their learning, or they weren’t. Somehow, I can’t just leave accountability out of it.

Finally, if it was appropriate, students could submit the work they do during Genius Hour to a classroom teacher to satisfy learning outcomes from that class. If a student wrote an anime comic book, they could submit it to me for their English portfolio. If they created something in Google Sketchup, they could submit it to their drafting teacher.

Here is where I need some help:

  • What do you think of my plan? Please help me with constructive criticism – I don’t want to get this wrong.
  • What platform should I use? Obviously, I am familiar with WordPress, so would be able to help them. I don’t really want to set up a classroom blog, because my great wish would be that they would take this blog with them through high school.  Am I wrong in thinking this could work like this? I had one recommendation on Twitter for Posterous. Thoughts??
  • Student digital footprint – As a teacher, I use my full name. Should they? It is meant to be their professional footprint after all.
  • Assessment, bloody assessment. Does my pass/fail work on a report home? Obviously, I would give plenty of written and verbal encouragement.
  • Parental permission, notification?

Thanks for any ideas you may have.