They didn’t need me.

Tonight I feel like a proud parent. While I don’t have children (my dogs rarely go out of their way to make me proud), I can only imagine that this is what it feels like when your kids dazzle, shine, and achieve great things right before your eyes.

Our district approved the use of Kidblog a few months ago. A few of our intermediate classes have jumped on board, and I’ve been reading some articulate reflections from students and teachers alike. It’s been a great start!

My grade 2 team is comprised of four very talented and dedicated teachers. This team collaborates regularly and always makes student learning the priority. They take initiative, are creative thinkers, and are enthusiastic members of our school community. Knowing the concept of blogging may be foreign to our young students and their families, this team decided to host a Family Blog Night.

What I appreciate most about this night is that I had nothing to do with it.

I received an invitation just like everyone else. I stand here, in the back of the library, watching teachers, parents, and students sign into Kidblog and listening to conversations about learning and plenty of laughter.

When I confirmed the start time for tonight’s event, I asked the team if they needed me to do anything. The reply? “Nope! You get to sit there and look good…then bail us out if we don’t know the answer!” They didn’t need me. They spoke eloquently, had engaging visuals to accompany their information, and eagerly anticipated and answered parents’ questions about blogging.

Does this night sound like fun? How to host your own blog night in five easy steps:

1. Send fancy invitations. Parents and kids love fancy invitations. And it makes them feel special.

2. Develop a presentation that covers the following topics:

  • What is a blog? Why are we using blogs? It’s about the learning, not the tool. It’s authentic. Global audience.
  • How do we access the blogs? Walk parents and students through the process. Model!
  • What is commenting? How do we compose quality comments? Watch this. Show examples.
  • How will we blog safely? Explain the moderation process and policies.

3. Serve brownies and punch.

4. Invite your principal. She will blog about your awesomeness!

5. Allow time for questions and answers and have computers ready to go so parents can help their students write their very first post!

Thanks to Mandy, Christina, Kelly, and Julie for planning and hosting this fabulous learning event for our students and families.

When I think about what I want for my school, and the type of leader I want to be, I absolutely want to get to the point where we did tonight. They didn’t need me! George referred to it as being invisible. My teachers owned it. Because of that, our kids will own it.  I am an especially proud principal today!

12 Comments

  1. Greg said:

    AWESOME, AWESOME, AWESOME, AWESOME. Four words to describe this second grade team. Wish I could have been there to see blog night in action but I’m sure the students will tell me all about it! I’m looking forward to reading some of the posts!

    February 9, 2011
    Reply
  2. Tim Gwynn said:

    Steps 4 and 5 were my favorite. Thanks for sharing this experience with us. Your students are lucky to have such awesome teachers, and your teachers are lucky to have such great leadership. Leadership that knows when to step back and let others lead with the things at which they are great. I look forward to hearing more about the progression of your students’ blogs and might recruit you and your teachers to speak with some of my teachers. I’m sure they will be inspired!

    February 9, 2011
    Reply
    • Lyn Hilt said:

      Let’s definitely get our classes connected, Tim! Thanks for your kind words!

      February 9, 2011
      Reply
  3. Tom Schimmer said:

    Great post Lyn, I think the best leaders know how to create the conditions that allow others to succeed. Leadership is not about the leader. It’s about how the leader buids the capacity of others. You obviously work with some great teachers, but that isn’t often enough to create a great school. Someone ties it all together with influence, nudging, and the occasional positive nag. Watching others excel is as satisying as it gets as a leader. Congratualtions on a great night and what I imagine to be a great school. That doesn’t happen by accident.

    Oh by the way….#3 was my favorite…I love brownies!

    Tom

    February 9, 2011
    Reply
    • Lyn Hilt said:

      First of all, the brownies were fantastic and had Valentine’s Day-themed icing. 🙂
      And thanks so much for your supportive comments, Tom! I hope my nagging is more positive than anything. 🙂 My teachers work hard, they deserve all of the credit. Thanks for reading!

      February 9, 2011
      Reply
  4. Brent Catlett said:

    Hi! What a fabulous idea from your 2nd grade team! I am a past administrator and now an instructional technology trainer for my district and I have been using kidblog with the students of my district and I sometimes struggle to get teachers to jump on board so it was refreshing to see 2nd grade teachers pulling this off. Great post on your part as well. Keep up the good work.

    Brent Catlett
    @catlett1

    February 10, 2011
    Reply
    • Lyn Hilt said:

      Thanks, Brent! Please share with us how your teachers are using Kidblog. Always happy to get more ideas!

      February 19, 2011
      Reply
  5. […] We need to better involve parents and families. When we first started blogging, my genius grade 2 team developed and hosted a Family Blog Night, where they invited parents and students to learn more about blogging, Kidblog, and commenting. After the teachers shared their info, parents and students logged into the student accounts for the first time to compose the first blog post together! Read more about this event here. […]

    September 24, 2013
    Reply
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    September 24, 2014
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