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Blogging for Kids

Blogging for Kids

Warning: No, you’re not on Parent Hacks all of a sudden, but I want your take on this.

I was never a big fan of report writing, especially the research portion. But when I could make it into a dazzling project, then it was kind of fun. My mom helped me with this big report on the Black Rhinoceros. I remember facts about that creature today (26 years later- ouch).

But the tools of the time were the photocopier, the clear plastic sleeve, the one-inch ring binder, and clearly-written labels.

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Blogging for Kids

My friends’ oldest son just started a blog. He’s six. Mom and Dad help administer the blog, and probably keep him safe from inappropriate comments and the like (oh, and he’s a comment FIEND- loves them!). But here’s some interesting behaviors and why I think this is a neat hack for parents with younger-than-you’d-expect-to-be-thinking-about-this kids.

  • He’s six.
  • He likes changing the colors of the words every bit as much as the research.
  • He must be using Google to research, or Wikipedia.
  • He’s using blogging tools.
  • He’s observing social software (his love of the comments).
  • He’s getting good follow-on feedback from readers, which drives him to research more.
  • He’s actually planning posts.

Do it Yourself

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It’s easy to set up a blog, and easy to set it up with protection from typical spam. If you maintain the admin rights, you usually can keep the blog safe from things that will bug you as a parent. If you can disable urls in comments, all the better (to prevent malicious pointers).

So, what would using the shiny fun of a blog do to teaching your kid how to research? How does the adoption of social software and other new and emerging web applications impact how you might share knowledge with your kid?

Go further. Would a home wiki be useful? Even offline (like GTD Tiddlywiki), wouldn’t getting kids in the habit of using technological tools be another step up in their future abilities to use web tools for research and expression?

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Is this “kids growing up too fast” fodder? I don’t think so. I see a blog being far more useful as a way to promote learning, sharing, and developing broader perspective on the world.

The Same Tools

You know why lots of tech gadgets and sites fail to reach kids the way they intend? Because they make the products DIFFERENT than what the kids see their parents use. My daughter loathes kid versions of adult things. (This becomes tricky around scissors).

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Why NOT cook them a Blogger.com or WordPress.com account? The tools are usable, laid out relatively simply, and if they’re not getting all tricky (I haven’t used blogger in a few months, but how is he changing those colors?), it’s easy to teach them how to use the basics.

You can choose privacy levels appropriate to your take on the internet. I put my kids on the net, and others don’t. That’s not the primary issue. That’s an internal-to-your-house debate.

It’d be interesting to know your thoughts on this one. What would your kids do with a blog like Aidan’s? Would it drive some other use for their time? Would it promote research and presentation skills?

–Chris Brogan had to go out and buy his own computer, after surrendering the other to his four year old daughter. Otherwise, he wouldn’t be able to write [chrisbrogan.com]

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Last Updated on October 9, 2018

How to Write a Personal Mission Statement to Ensure Peak Productivity

How to Write a Personal Mission Statement to Ensure Peak Productivity

Most of you made personal, one sentence resolutions like “I want to lose weight” or “I vow to go back to school.” It is a tradition to start the New Year with things you want to achieve, but under the influence resolutions are often unrealistic.

If you’re wondering when will be a good time to write a mission statement, NOW is the time to take a personal inventory to make this year your most productive year ever. You may be asking yourself, “How am I going to do that?” You, my friends, are going to write personal mission statements.

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A large number of corporations use mission statements to define the purpose of the company’s existence. Sony wants to “become the company most known for changing the worldwide poor-quality image of Japanese products” and 3M wants “to solve unsolved problems innovatively”. A personal mission statement is different than a corporate mission statement, but the fundamentals are the same.

So why do you need one? A personal statement will help you identify your core values and beliefs in one fluid tapestry of content that you can read anytime and anywhere to stay on task toward success.

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For example, Tom Cruise in Jerry Maguire came to the realization that he had lost track of what was important to him. After writing a personal mission statement, we saw him start his own business and he got the girl, Renee Zelleweger. Not bad, wouldn’t you say? A personal mission statement will make sure that, through all the texting, emailing and constant bombardment of on-the-go activity, you won’t lose sight of what is most important to you.

Mission statements can be simple and concise while others are longer and filled with detail. The length of your personal mission statement will not be determined until you follow this simple equation to create your motivational springboard for 2008.

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To begin your internal cleansing, you will need to jot down the required information in the following five steps:

  1. What are your values? Values steer your actions and determine where you spend time, energy, and most importantly, money. Be specific and unique to yourself. Too much generalization will not be as effective. It is called a “personal” mission statement for a reason.
  2. What are three important goals you hope to achieve this year? Keep your list of important goals small and give them a date. It is better to focus on the horizon and not the stars. Realistic goals are keys to ultimate success.
  3. What image do you hope to project to yourself? How you see yourself is how the world will view you. Think about this carefully. Your image should encompass what you look like and feel after you have achieved your goals.
  4. Write down action statements from each value describing how you will use those values to achieve your three goals. Start with “I will…”
  5. Rewrite your statement to include only your action statements. Make portable copies for your wallet, car or office.

If you followed the steps above, congratulations! You have just written your first personal mission statement. Your personal statement will change over the years as your goals change. You can have more than one statement for the different compartments of your life such as your career, family, marriage, etc.

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Writing a personal mission statement is an effective method to ensure your productivity is at its peak. It is an ideal tradition to start so that when next year rolls around, the outdated practice of resolutions will be something you permanently left in the past.

Featured photo credit: Álvaro Serrano via unsplash.com

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