I am the Head of English Faculty at Auckland Girls' Grammar School and this year I have been lucky enough to be awarded an E-fellowship which is allowing me a little time and support to conduct an inquiry project looking at how online communities and blogs can be used as part of the preparation and formative assessment for Formal Writing (AS90053).
In this proposed inquiry project I am aiming to critically reflect on the practice of formal writing, as a formative task through the use of an online classroom community (the class wiki) which provides students with the topics and related live links to resources for a range of formal writing topics. The formal writing practise will be completed in the context of individual student blogs. The blog will then provide a platform for guided and non-guided collaborative writing, peer and teacher feed-forward and feedback.
I then wish to look at the effects of these practices on the learner, to see the impact this approach has on student participation, engagement and improvement of literacy levels as illustrated in their production of formal writing. I am also hoping to measure how realistic and successful this approach is in comparison to more traditional in class written practice and potentially measuring whether using an environment (that of the online community) that our students feel comfortable in, enhances the development of their literacy levels.
If you are keen to see how this all goes throughout the year, I will be posting my updates and reflections here.
Here's hoping my hunch is right that increased engagement may equate to greater success! You can check out how I used this project last year by following the link http://thevirtualclassroom.pbwiki.com/Wikis+in+English
Auckland Girls' Grammar School