Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Research Proposal

Yesterday I presented my research proposal...hopefully I won't have to change anything!
my question is: "what happens when English Language Learners are taught to blog?"
my sub questions ask:
  • Will writing achievement be affected?
  • will students see them selves as part of the classroom community?
  • Will students be more reflective about the content?
All of my students are ELL who are facing "double the work." According to Short and Fitzimmons (2007), the country is attempting to find solutions to trying to teach content, literacy and language to students at the same time. High-Stakes testing has created an environment where language learners must perform on tests in their second language. They must learn to read and write as adolescents in their second language at a time when they should be using reading and writing as a learning tool. On top of that, they must learn the content provided by the state and district standards.

My plan is to teach them to blog. I will slowly implement blogging as a reflective tool in my social studies classroom. My hope is that by the end of my research they will not only respond to teacher questions but, summarize, reflect, and internalize the course content. I also hope that they visit the blogs of other students to comment and connect.

Blogs and technology are an important tool and resource for our students to learn. Due to technological advances jobs and expectations of employees are rapidly changing. According to former Secretary of Education Richard Riley, I am preparing my students for jobs that do not exist yet.

Okay, small "trailer" of my research. I'm hoping to being to quantify what we all know: technology makes a difference in the engagement and achievement of our students. After watching Darren and other educators successfuly integrate blogs I am excited to capture this process in my research. I believe that blogging creates an atmosphere of collaboration where, as Darren puts it, students become the experts!

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