Agenda

  • Share: what blogs do you read?
  • Discuss: why does the UCWbL have a blog?
  • Brainstorm blog topics in groups
  • Read & Reflect: “How to Write an Effective Blog Post”
  • Blog!

What blogs do you read?

Break into small groups and discuss what blogs you read and why you like them. Share with the group.

For example, one of the blogs Matthew P. reads is Stratechery.

Why a blog?

In your groups, reflect on About UCWbLing and why the UCWbL has a blog, what the goals of the blog are, and how collaboration is a key part of what UCWbLing does. Share your reflections with the group.

Brainstorming5453192331_86ca1dc879_b

In groups, brainstorm 5-15 ideas for specific blog post topics.

Some sample categories for blog posts:

  • Favorite tutoring resources (and why), and how blog readers can use them (think Purdue OWL, Diana Hacker, etc. – concrete resources with links for the reader).
  • Hot topics in the fields of education, tutoring, writing, etc., that are interesting or somehow relate to practices at the UCWbL
  • Informative posts for tutors (learning experiences that can be shared)
  • Informative posts for writers (things  writers seem to struggle with or do well)
  • Experiences on a specific UCWbL team and learning experiences from that
  • Favorite tutoring strategies and why they work
  • Reflections on learning to be a peer writing tutor and specific observations or developments from that ongoing process

Some blogs/websites to respond to:

  • WritePraxis is a tutor-written blog for other tutors – there’s plenty of content here worth responding to and thinking about
  • Praxis is a peer-reviewed writing center journal published by The Undergraduate Writing Center at the University of Texas and presents lots of interesting research and tutor testimonials
  • Peer Tutoring Resource Center is a website dedicated to the practices, struggles, and development of peer tutors and has lots of research/practice-based content
  • PeerCentered is another blog for tutors and by tutors, in a collaborative style (written by tutors around the world) and is a good resource for potentially controversial things to respond to (because it’s written by many people and not curated by an editorial board)
  • The Dangling Modifier is a writing center newsletter geared at connecting writing centers and publishes research-based and tutor experience-based content

Some specific sample topics:

  • What does this post on the 826 National program, and how they approach tutoring for younger students, intersect with or divert from practices at the UCWbL?
  • How does this post, about a law professor who went to a writing workshop to improve his writing, relate to the practices and values of the UCWbL (maybe think about who can benefit from collaboration, “the” writing process, who is a writer, etc.)?
  • How can this post, about body language and facial expressions (eyebrow movement, in particular), help inform the practices and awareness of tutors during an appointment?
  • What do you think about the ideas of diversity presented in this post and how these ideas about diversity might come into play at the UCWbL and in tutoring appointments?
  • How does this post about monthly continuing education for teachers and educators relate to the UCWbL’s focus on professional development, and are there any ideas that could be implemented at the UCWbL, or that you already see at work?
  • Are there any commonalities or major differences between the modes of collaborative learning discussed in this post and what the UCWbL believes in and tries to accomplish?
  • Does this post, about the challenges of navigating and maintaining professional relationships on social media, have any good tips for tutors or administrators on how to maintain appropriate social media relationships with writers?

How to blog

Read and reflect on Anthony Rotolo’s “How to Write an Effective Blog Post” and share ideas with the group.

Blog!

Chose one of the topics your group brainstormed (or one of the categories/topics listed above, if necessary) and write a blog post about it. Use ALL parts of a blog post that Rotolo defines.