As a Social Studies teacher, I have always focused on bringing the element of writing into my classroom especially in the area of opinion and debate. With the introduction of the Common Core integration of writing into my class is even more present. These writings have to include citing source, reviewing primary sources, and understanding point of view and content. I teach a 7th grade World Studies class and see myself integrating a class blog with a student being the guest author each weekend on topics and events in the world. This blog could be a learning tool for others in the class on the topic and as a research tool for other students to use. At the same time, I would need to prep my students to understand how to evaluate sources they include in their blog for accuracy and trustworthiness (Richardson, 2010). I would need to teach my students the difference in the types of blog writing, so they would be able to respond in the proper fashion. In social studies, our writings could be an opinion on a situation or stance on policy but also an informational blog with deep critical thinking.
In reviewing rubrics on grading student blogs, I find myself referring back to the Common Core Literacy Standards for Social Studies. These standards focus on writing arguments based upon content, writing informative and narrative text, production and distribution of writing, research and range of writing. A blog clearly covers the distribution of writing with the integration of technology (Common Core, 2012). In reviewing rubrics, I did find a rubric on blogging to me which seemed very vague in a way but the teacher meant the rubric to be this way and to be used with user discretion in mind. After reviewing the rubric, you will see the author made it very high level and not specific. A teacher could use the rubric very easily. I thought I would share the rubric, it is Prof Hacker. In the post Samples the author states,” In my efforts to quickly and fairly evaluate blog posts, I developed a simple 5-point scale, which rates each post according to the level of critical thinking and engagement displayed in the post.”
I had a discussion about my rubric for blogging with my Language Arts co-hort about not including grammar in my rubric. Her response back to me was, “Do you feel comfortable grading it.” As a social studies teacher, I wanted to focus on the content and understanding of the material. Since I am not an English teacher have created a rubric for grading based upon my needs in my class. In reviewing the Pro Hacker rubric, I knew what I did not want. After reviewing the Common Core and the two rubrics below, I was able narrow my criteria. In our classroom, it is important to understand and know the facts, which relates to research and evidence. The blog’s content must be relevant to the topic and the student must be able to analysis the information. In doing these steps, the student is reaching higher levels of critical thinking. The student must be able to defend their position on a topic uses these facts and reasoning. This rubric will grade the student’s original blog postings but do believe I would have another rubric for grading student response to post.
Common Core. (2012). Common core state initiative. Retrieved from www.corestandards.org/ELA-Literacy/WHST/6-8/
Sample, M. (2010, Sept 10). A rubric for evaluating student blogs. Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/blogs/profhacker/a-rubric-for-evaluating-student-blogs/27196
Content and Creativity
Postings provide minimal/or no insight, understanding and reflective thought about the topic by not by either including a focus argument to a topic, asking new question regarding the topic, writing an oppositional statement supported by related research.
Postings provide moderate insight, understanding and reflective thought about the topic by either including a focus argument to a topic, asking new question regarding the topic, writing an oppositional statement supported by related research..
Postings provide comprehensive insight, understanding, and reflective thought about the topic by either including a focus argument to a topic, asking new question regarding the topic, writing an oppositional statement supported by related research.
Research and Evidence
Provides inaccurate, little, or no evidence to support claim(s)No images, media or text created by others display appropriate copyright permissions and do not include accurate, properly formatted citations
Provides sufficient and relevant evidence to support claim(s )Most images, media or text created by others display appropriate copyright permissions and accurate, properly formatted citations
Provides substantial and pertinent evidence to support claim(s)All images, media and text created by others display appropriate copyright permissions and accurate citations
Shows limited and/or no understanding of topic or text. Uses limited, simplistic and/or no reasoning to connect evidence with claim(s)
Shows competent understanding of topic or text. Uses valid reasoning to connect evidence with claim(s)
Shows insightful understanding of topic or text. Uses persuasive and valid reasoning to connect evidence with claim(s)