There is something special, almost magical, when someone takes the time to read your work and leave a specific comment. I have witnessed this magic every time my learners log on to their blog pages and see that other students or teachers have made positive comments that speak to the posts’ content or the writing. The scenario looks a little something like this:
“Mrs. V.! Look. Hurry!”
“What is it?” I ask excitedly.
“A student (or teacher) from Barcelona, Spain (or any number of other places) left a comment on my blog post! You have to look at it!”
“I’d love to!” I excitedly read the comment and ask, “What do you think about that? What do you think you will write in reply?”
Then I listen as the students tell me what they think are appropriate comments. Afterwards, they scurry back to where they are working and get to the task of writing replies. They are so careful with their own comments and replies as they revise and edit to ensure they are writing clearly and making as few mistakes as possible. It is quite magical to watch, really, and it affirms my belief in having authentic audiences outside of the classroom.
I appreciate opportunities, such as the Edublogs Student Blogging Challenge, that provide these rich experiences. My students are immersed in the magical world of writing, and I know the memories of these experiences will last a lifetime.