lunes, 26 de octubre de 2009


The term blogs has been in circulation since 1997 when enthusiast Jorn Barger decided to rename his website, Robot Wisdom, as a ‘weblog’, soon afterwards abbreviated to ‘blog’. Consequently, terms such as ‘blogger’, ‘to blog’… have become part of the vocabulary employed by users…
(Murray & Hourigan, 2008, p. 82)

To blog or blogging basically mean writing about things you want to write about in a sort of public online diary. In a matter of ten years or so, blogs have become viral. Everyone has something to say and since the most important blogging platforms, such as blogger and wordpress, offer free hosting service everyone can say it.

Why blogging?

Why not? People can have a blog like this one and talk about just one topic, like I do. You can have a blog about your life which includes all the things that happen to you. Many people use their blogs as a means to relax by expressing their opinions and thoughts, getting things out of their system. What is curious is that other people may find those things worth reading and following, so they will even subscribe to the blog, read and comment every time there is a new post. Crazy world huh?
Also, blogs like this one are easy to create, they’re free, you get published in a click, interaction among bloggers is easy, new mobile technologies make access even easier, and, if you use it with your students, it can take practice and learning out of the classroom.

The fun part of blogging

Say you have a hobby and you start blogging about it. When writing on a specific topic, however, you are forced to do research, even if your research starts with a Wikipedia search. With time, you start looking for better sources. Without even noticing, you are studying and learning about this topic without having anyone forcing you to do so. You find other bloggers who share your hobby, and this is how networks and communities of knowledge are born. People who share an interest and knowledge about specific things get together and start sharing. They latter may become sort of online authorities in that topic. Can you think of the use this could have in your teaching? Can you think of the implications for language learning?

I love things that have the potential of being fun, especially because you do them for the sake of it. However, creating interesting content that will generate comments and interaction is not easy. So, it would be advisable for you to go through some training before using blogs with your students. This way, you both can get the most out of the tool.

In the end, students will feel more motivated if they are writing for a bigger audience than their language teacher (Dippold, 2009). Imagine having them writing about their hobbies, favorite band, art, photography (you can photoblog), even politics or religion (if they want to) and interacting with people around the world in the language you are teaching them. What a great way to learn and practice. Don’t you think? I know people who even make a living out of blogging. Who knows where doing things for fun might take you and your Ss?


Dippold, D. 2009. Peer feedback through blogs: Student and teacher perceptions in an advanced german class. ReCALL 21, 1 (Jan. 2009), 18-36. DOI=

Murray, L. and Hourigan, T. 2008. Blogs for specific purposes: Expressivist or socio-cognitivist approach?. ReCALL 20, 1 (Jan. 2008), 82-97. DOI=


Murray, L. and Hourigan, T. 2008. Blogs for specific purposes: Expressivist or socio-cognitivist approach?. ReCALL 20, 1 (Jan. 2008), 82-97. DOI=

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