Thursday, October 05, 2006

Reaction to live blogging and aquarium discussion

So, what did you think about the live blogging as well as the aquarium style discussion? Remember to be specific as well as offer constructive criticism. Also, if you can think of solutions to issues please comment to those.

45 Comments:

Blogger maria k said...

I think that today's live blogging and aquarium discussion was awesome. I noticed a lot of people who couldn't get their ideas in the discussion turned to the blog. Another thing I noticed though was that the blog went really fast. Some of the topics being discussed in the blog were totally different than the ones in the aquarium discussion. I'm glad, though, that everyone could get thier voice in and I think this was an awesome idea!

Thu Oct 05, 02:17:00 PM  
Blogger Mphair said...

Personally, I think that the live blogging was really cool. Ok, that was lame...it was awesome! However, it went much faster than my mind could go. It was a challenge to keep up with the spoken conversation and questions and the blogged conversation as well. However, it is a good tool because it allows others to have a say in what is being discussed, and it also teaches one how to multi-task at a higher pace than people normally work on.

Thu Oct 05, 03:22:00 PM  
Blogger kjerstinl said...

I really liked everything about the discussion today, it was amazing. I loved the conversations, and when I was in a lull in between points, I could just read what the conversation online was going and get more ideas.

Thu Oct 05, 03:23:00 PM  
Blogger EmilyL said...

I enjoyed the fact that like Maria said that there were two different discussions going on at the same time. In do think that we need to have better system for allowing people with quieter voices or who are in corners to be heard because often we would start and no one would hear. I am open to suggestions for this system because I cannot come up with any.

Thu Oct 05, 03:25:00 PM  
Blogger BenH said...

I think it was good and really did help, especially for the quiter people and those who did not like talking. I didn't really use it, because I like the absolutely instant and live debate, but it was still good. If only we could have something like a chat room. I bet administration would freak out though.

Thu Oct 05, 03:56:00 PM  
Blogger christa s said...

The discussions today were pretty cool, and I liked that if you couldn't get a word in on aquarium discussion, you could go to the blog to express your ideas. It was a little hard to keep up with both conversations at one time, and it was hard to keep up with all that was going on at the blog because so many people said so many things and by the time you got through reading a couple comments, there were 10 more to read and comment on. Also, in the aquarium the discussion was made more interesting by people fighting to say their points, but many times it was the same person that won over and over again and many people did not even get to say one sentence. If we could work out a system for this, more people could get a word in.

Thu Oct 05, 04:35:00 PM  
Blogger EmilyH said...

i really liked the discussions, but I think that having two different discussions going on at the same time kind of split the group. There were some people who were paying attention to the blogging only, and others who were paying attention to only the live discussion, so maybe next time instead of responding to a blog question in another blog, try and say it out loud first, and then reply to it on the blog if it didnt work, so that the discussions are on the same page for the most part. I think that the spoken discussion should be the priority, and the blog as a second way to get your point across, but some people were using it as the primary way, which split the group.

Thu Oct 05, 05:01:00 PM  
Blogger adamb said...

I agree with Benh about the live blogging. It helped me and I am a quiter person plus it adds a whole different conversation, topic, and oppurtunity to the class. It may have talked about Macbeth while the class discussed Lord of the flies.

Thu Oct 05, 05:15:00 PM  
Blogger Shelby B. said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Thu Oct 05, 05:17:00 PM  
Blogger Shelby B. said...

I agree with everyone in the fact that it was really enjoyable and I personally liked it better than the tests. Along with Maria there were two conversations going and like christa said it was hard to pay attention keep up with both conversations. I also noticed many people dominated the conversations. So my suggestion is that in the middle everyone that has already talked cannot speak for the next five minutes and the ones that have not talked or only said one thing can talk for those five minutes and no one else. Then after that five minutes everyone can talk.

Thu Oct 05, 05:18:00 PM  
Blogger _annaw_ said...

I really like both, and it definately went faster, but it seemed that half of the time we were distracted in class, and the other half our posts were a little distracted.

Thu Oct 05, 05:40:00 PM  
Blogger TyC said...

I really liked the live blogging because everyone can talk at the same time! It moved a lot faster than the discussion, and everyone can get their thoughts out. Sometimes it was really hard to get your point out on a certain topic and the discussion has already moved on to the next topic before you can say anything. This is where I liked the blogging. This was definitely way better than a written test.

Thu Oct 05, 05:41:00 PM  
Blogger HannahJ said...

I LOVED IT! it was great to be able to have 2 discussions at once and resond to others' comments and questions on Blogger as well as those being asked in class. I also really like the aquarium setup because you can see everyone and it's like we're focusing on each other, not just the teacher (no offense Smith).

One problem we kind of had was when a bunch of people wanted to talk at once and we were calling who got to talk next. I don't really know what we'd do to fix that, but it made for a good discussion!

Another thing was that we couldn't seem to get away from Lord of the Flies. I think we should have tried to find a balance between Macbeth and LOF..and even on the live blogging people were starting to say they were bored with LOF.

Thu Oct 05, 05:44:00 PM  
Blogger Zachf said...

I completely agree with what Ty said, it was difficult to get my ideas into the discussion sometimes so it was much easier to have them on the live blog. Everyone can talk at the same time, even people who are somewhat shy can still particpate in the discussion during the blog.

Thu Oct 05, 05:53:00 PM  
Blogger Shelby B. said...

I agree with Hannah J. that we did focus a lot on LOF and not so much on Macbeth so maybe we need to find more of a balance next time.

Thu Oct 05, 06:01:00 PM  
Blogger danh said...

Hmm... a lot to say. No doubt, live blogging with an aquarium discussion is pretty much the best idea for a test ever. I think that the blog was good because if you didn't feel that it was the right time to butt it, you could just post a comment on the blog. It was fun to see how many comments people had on everything. And how there could be five comments posted in the same minute. The discussion and blog really help me understand LOF and Macbeth more, and was WAY less stressful thatn taking an actual test. I agree with Hannah about the aquarium setup. I don't like to literally be in the middle of a big discussion about hardcore literature. I also agree with her about the LOF part. Although it was interesting talking and blogging about LOF, I think there should've been more stuff about Macbeth. Maybe like a blog for Macbeth and a blog for LOF. Oh well. Anyway I think we should do the same thing for Fahrenheit 451, and then we can relate Fahrenheit to LOF to Macbeth and vice versa. Great idea Mrs. Smith. Way better than taking a test.

Thu Oct 05, 06:29:00 PM  
Blogger Aylar said...

All I can say is that I LOVE TAKING TESTS like this!!!!!!!!! If you guys haven't noticed I Kind of like to talk.... =) So this kind of test was not only less stressful but I felt really good about it. I felt like I really could understand LOF and Macbeth SOOOOOO Much better. I want ALL of our tests to be like this!!
Although I didn't utilize live blogging because well.. I was talking I think its a great idea.
You ARE AWESOME SMITH!!!!

Thu Oct 05, 07:15:00 PM  
Blogger AleeA said...

I personally really like the live blogging and aquarium style discussion. They were both effective ways of talking about Macbeth and LOF, and I found them a lot funner than having to do some written test. I only had a few concerns:
1. Some people really hogged the conversation. I know that it is up to us to make our voices heard, but some people just wouldn't let up and you would find yourself in a yelling contest verses actually discussing the topics at hand. I think that in the future, if you know that you have had a lot of chances to talk, give the other person a chance and either wait till another time to say what is on your mind or put it on the blog.
2. Also, I found the blog a little distracting from the live conversation, for you constantly had to hit the refresh button t be able to keep up with what was going on. This got a little annoying, for I was trying to participate in both activities.
Overall, I really enjoyed this "test" and want to do it more often verses handwritten tests. Thanks for giving us the chance to do this Mrs. Smith!!

Thu Oct 05, 07:16:00 PM  
Blogger karib said...

I thought that that way of holding a discussion was really cool. It was more like many different conversations going on all at one time, such as I had a short discussion with Tom about human nature on the blog while simultaneously having another conversation with the class. That was cool, except a lot of times there was so much I wanted to say I couldn't get it all out there. It was also awesome because it was something new, and I think change is interesting. I also learned to love the F5 key. That discussion was much more interesting than socratic seminars I've been involved with in the past and it was much more involved also.

Thu Oct 05, 07:17:00 PM  
Blogger erinl said...

OK WOW! That was probably the best test that I have ever taken. I liked how we could discuss outloud and on blogger because I'm not a very vocal person in class that is all open to sharing ideas. This way I could say what I was thinking and then other people could respond. I really like how at the end I asked how anyone sets up a scale on who is a bad guy and who is a good guy. There were so many comments and I had my own idea going on too, but I felt that I contributed to the conversation. The only wierd part of the test is that we spent alot of time discussing Lord of the Flies instead of Macbeth.

Thu Oct 05, 07:56:00 PM  
Blogger lauraf said...

I really liked the discussion today because it was awesome to be able to hear others' opinions about quotes or events that took place in Macbeth, and connections to Lord of the Flies. I also liked that we could also live blog to say our ideas that we might not have had a chance to fit in during the discussion. I also liked the talking part of the actual discussion because no one overtook the conversation completely, and althought some people talked more than others, most people could get their point in either through blogging or discussing. I definitely think that we should continue using this format of discussions!!

Thu Oct 05, 08:24:00 PM  
Blogger JoanneH said...

I liked this discussion and much prefered it to a test; however, I had some problems personally. I'm a terrible multitasker, especially when I'm thinking, so I had a hard time following the spoken discussion and working on the blogging discussion at the same time.

The one thing I noticed communtitively was that there was a lot of repetion on the blog because everybody had the same thought at the same time and we all typed it up and posted it at the same time, so nobody knew that was happening until you went back and skimmed the blog.

Thu Oct 05, 08:36:00 PM  
Blogger sarahc said...

I, like everyone else, prefer this kind of test to a written test. But, I think it's not the best idea to do blogging and discussion at the same time. It makes things confusing and I could never read the blog and listen to the conversation at the same time. I think that, in the future, we should do blogging and discussion seperately. For a test, we could get into smaller groups and discuss the topics, that way, the quieter people will have a better chance to talk. I also agree with ben that we should see if we could get a chat room. it would be so nice to have a conversation totally on the internet! Chat rooms also continually update and would make for a lively conversation that would allow everyone to get a voice in.

Thu Oct 05, 08:50:00 PM  
Blogger chelseah said...

Ok, so there is no question that I liked that better then a written test, and I do feel that I got more out of it. I feel like I understood everything a lot better because I got to hear everyone else's opinions. I think that the live blogging was a really good idea as well because if we couldn't get a word in about a certain topic, then we could post it and have the same thing happen with everyone’s opinions, just not out loud. It was like we were having two different conversations at once. Also, when we moved on out loud to a different topic, we could still talk about the old one on the blog. We got expand much more and expand our knowledge. It really helped me to get a full grasp on both books. I do think that the chat room would be a good idea, just because it is more instantaneous. I do think that we were a little stuck on LOF, and wasn’t it a Macbeth test... oh well it was still extremely beneficial.

Thu Oct 05, 09:29:00 PM  
Blogger Phillips said...

I think it was caotic on the blog and poeple where answering to posts on the blog that were 5-6 posts back so it was hard to follow, but what I did read and hear was interesting and helpfl

Thu Oct 05, 09:34:00 PM  
Blogger jess b said...

I think that at first alot of us were very nervous and didn't quite know what to say; but once people had ideas it was alot of talking and cutting people off. There is a nice and un-rude way to cut people off; however, some people started to get rude during the discussion. Also, people should try to not control the whole discussion. There were a few people who talked the whole time and then when others who hadn't talked as much tried to speak he/she would cut them off. I was sitting next to Adam and I could tell that he was getting extremely frustrated because he couldn't just butt in on people. For people like me its easy becaus I have such a loud voice; but for some its very difficult to be heard and people should be concious of that.

Thu Oct 05, 09:42:00 PM  
Blogger hannahs said...

I enjoyed live blogging because a lot of times I have a hard time sharing my ideas and live blogging allowed me to express my thoughts easily. Although I thought the aquarium style discussion made it easier to see everyone, I didn't find it much different from a circle. I didn't observe any significant benifit or problem with the aquarium style.

Thu Oct 05, 10:39:00 PM  
Blogger tanal said...

I enjoyed the live blogging, but there were also many things that i didn't like as much about it. I liked being able to discuss with others over the computer while others were talking in class during the fishbowl, but also it limited some talk for class and some for the blogging and i didn't like that. Sometimes it seemed that there was a more interesting and intense discussion on the live blogger than there was in class. Also it was hard because so many people were blogging on the live blog at once and they were blogging really fast, that when i wanted to add onto or answer someone elses blog there was already like 15 blogs inbetween. It just seemeed really messy and confusing at times. I think that next time when we do the live blogging and discussion over farenheit 451 the people in the center of the fishbowl should have the discussion and the people around the outside should do the live blogging. Hopefully next time we will have a better idea of what to do and it won't be so confusing, but otherwise i really enjoyed doing the live blogging and trying something new.

Fri Oct 06, 10:06:00 AM  
Blogger tanal said...

Oh and to add onto Chelsea's i enjoyed the discussion and live blogging much more than a written test and i also felt that i got a lot more out of it. Also since at times both of the books were confusing, i got a better understanding of both of the texts by doing this.

Fri Oct 06, 10:08:00 AM  
Blogger Sarah C said...

My overall experience was that i didn't get a chance to express my opinions aloud. I also I found it difficult to keep up with the conversation as well as the blog.

Fri Oct 06, 09:41:00 PM  
Blogger briang said...

There were several things I really liked about the fishbowl and the live blogging but there are also things that I didn't like about it.

First lets start with the positives. Like what has been said earlier, I liked this much better than a written test. I liked the fact that there really wasn’t a way to prepare, except to have actually read it and blogged your discussion question. By reading Macbeth and LOF you have already prepared yourself. All you really needed to do was show up, ready to discuss in class. I also thought that the thoughts and ideas presented in the discussion was awesome, there were a lot of things I never noticed until we discussed the book. I also really liked how we started talking about Macbeth, but really talked about LOF the most. I thought it was cool that we could take it that far and just go with it.

Some negatives though. I liked the idea behind the live blogging that we could carry on a conversation on the blog as well as aloud. It was amazing to me just looking at the two blogs from the two classes how close they were in number; just 9 apart. But, at least for me, I thought the blog was very chaotic and did not help our conversation because no one was on the same page. Maybe we could drop it completely or maybe just not have people blog so much. Also, Smith told us we would be graded not necessarily on how many times we talked, because who cares if you have 10 crappy comments, when if you had 2 good ones, it would count for much more. And that’s why there was the blog so you could say what you needed to. But because everyone was blogging at the same time, blogger was EXTREMELY SLOW! I only got 4 or 5 blogs in out of the 193, because each time i wanted to post something it literally took 5 minutes to blog it. Plus I needed to refresh constantly which took forever, and follow along with the outside conversation. Not to mention, on the inside conversation, towards the end everyone was trying to say something, and I'm not one to sit down and have someone talk over me, but I still was unable to get many comments across. I don't know if that will affect my grade on my seminaring, but if it does, I don’t know how I can be held accountable for that because time and other things just didn't permit me to say what I wanted to say.

I think to solve these problems we could either drop blogging all together, or tell people that if they are going to blog, only blog really meaningful things, so that there isn’t 200 posts. Some people would just say "I agree" and crap like that, which made it even harder to follow. Also, with the inside conversation, I know this might not be possible, but maybe if we spent two days or three days on the seminar, we could give everyone an opportunity to say what they want. We might be able to go into smaller groups as well.

Sat Oct 07, 11:34:00 PM  
Blogger kimmy c said...

I agree with sarah c... I found myself constantly battling with others just to talk, also everyone commented on the blog at the same time...

Sun Oct 08, 07:45:00 PM  
Blogger kenna_d said...

That was one of the best experiences I have ever had in english. Shout out to Smith for doing that as our test!! I thought that it was awsome how, no matter what, everyone could express their opinions. It is neat, because as many people said, in classes their are the kids who are always heard, and the kids that aren't. This way everyone was.

Sun Oct 08, 08:42:00 PM  
Blogger BenH said...

I agree with kenna, that was a great way to do a test. I think it really tested knowledge more than a normal one, so it was more effective.

Sun Oct 08, 09:26:00 PM  
Blogger tomr said...

I really enjoyed the live blogging because it gave me two outlets for my ideas. Although, in many cases, as Sarah C. pointed out, it was hard to get in a word edgewise in the regular discussion and the blog moved VERY fast. In both cases, it was hard to keep up. But I still thought it was supremely awesome.

Mon Oct 09, 12:46:00 PM  
Blogger Madisonm said...

I really like the live blogging part of the "test" discussion. I personally find it hard to squeeze in my ideas in a discussion before the moment passes...and sometimes it is even hard to say what I mean. I liked how we had the opportunities to talk out loud or to blog because then you could have more of a chance to express your opinions in the discussion.

Mon Oct 09, 12:53:00 PM  
Blogger Lane C. said...

I LOVED THE DISCUSSION. I sincerely hope we can do that again. The conversation in both medians, the live blogging and the discussion, was fast-paced and full of good information. Everyone was able to participate and no one fully dominated the conversation. It was definitely the ideal discussion.

Mon Oct 09, 12:54:00 PM  
Blogger AnnaD said...

I thought that the idea of live blogging was a very good idea, but it is in fact a very old one... Back then it was simply known as a "Group Discussion." I think that this was the best thing we have done in this class simply because we focused STRICTLY on the book and examining its meaning. W got back to the true point of the class: the literature itself. I hope we do it again in the future.

Mon Oct 09, 01:25:00 PM  
Blogger paigen said...

I really like the live blogging! Especially because when you are absent, you can still live blog and get your points! But one thing that I think needs to be worked on with the discussion, is that the same people kept trying to talk the whole time and like when I tried to say something and I had already started to say it, they would just talk right over you. But other than that I really like the style of it.

Mon Oct 09, 03:21:00 PM  
Blogger shaunam said...

I personally really enjoy discussing things and I did like the live blogging as well. I agree with paigen on how when you tried to say points people would talk over you, that was difficult. Other than that, I really enjoyed all of it!

Mon Oct 09, 06:29:00 PM  
Blogger Rileys said...

I think that the aquarium was a wonderful way to allow everyone to participate and have two discussions occuring at the same time that can influence the discussion of the other. I'm all for any other type of aquarium that we may have throughout the year

Mon Oct 09, 07:44:00 PM  
Blogger connord said...

I like the fish bowl format except some people need to be more asserive to make it work. It is boring if there is no discussion. I like the aquarium more than the blogger though because it is easier to understand what someone is trying to say.

Mon Oct 09, 08:15:00 PM  
Blogger endsleye said...

I liked the discussion at the end once every one actually started discussing instead of just talking. The liveblog was fun but also confusing because the responses come in so fast that once you post an answer to someones question we are already on a different subject.

Tue Oct 10, 06:34:00 AM  
Blogger saram said...

The discussion definetly got better further into it. I think it was just hard to get moving. We had to get to a point when people could really get into it and make a good point.

Tue Oct 10, 09:30:00 AM  
Blogger lindseyc said...

i think that the discussion was better with the live blogging because several people dominated the discussion, and even when one tried to talkj, they were ignored, so it helped everyone participate in the dicussion without having to scream to get your voice herd.

Thu Oct 12, 11:36:00 PM  

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