I taught an intro to journalism class at NYU this past spring and it was the second time I had incorporated the creation of news blogs as a platform for the students to show off their work.
Amazingly, this semester I only spent ONE class teaching them how to create blogs, unlike the previous year where students were less comfortable with media technology and it took much longer.
In that one class I explained embedding hyperlinks, creating RSS feeds, tweet feeds, uploading photos, posting tags and clouds, creating blogrolls, writing headlines, including cutlines (captions), uploading video, etc. During the semester, they posted their news feature stories, which had to include art elements (photos or graphics that they’ve created or had permission to use). A few weeks before the end of the semster, I threw them a curve ball: they needed to figure out how to create a vlog bio and post it.
My instructions were brief and I gave them a few video tips. Other than that, they were on their own. I had a hunch that making the students figure it out would make it more challenging for them. And it was. All of them, indeed, figured it out.
Here are a few of their blogs that I particularly liked: