Education Blog Awards – The Winners

There were over 300 nominated blogs, and over 3600 votes cast – then the five judges got their hands on the list! They have spent the best part of a month reading the forty shortlisted blogs and after much soul searching they have managed to come up with the winners.

Before the winners are announced, I have to say a huge thank you to all of the judges. They all took on the job willingly and gave up their considerable time for nothing – so thank you very much indeed to Ollie Bray, John Davitt, Paula Hubbard, Tim Rylands and Margaret Vass.

Right, enough of a build up here you go…

Class Blog of the Year.

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The judges were looking at five different areas:

  • A blog that is updated by all the learners in the class.
  • A blog that engages outside visitors and is responsive to their needs
  • A blog that demonstrates the power of the medium to move learners on
  • A blog that reflects the learning that is going on
  • A blog that has respect for copyright and other licencing conventions

The winning blog is The Diary of 6E. Judges said that this is “A great blog documenting the impressive work of Mr Efford and the 100 word challenge shows the power of a simple idea shared and developed and it has a stylish layout, very good BlogRoll, links to supportive resources. Like the Caption Competition. Commendable involvement in the QuadBlogging.

An honourable mention goes to The Year 4 at Bearwood blog, who came a very close second, with judges comments such as “powerful learning just oozes from the Year 4 Bearwood Primary Blog – I also loved the Adaptation Videos.”

Three blogs came joint third in this category, Horwich Blogs(“Like the way it is used to inform parents, especially in Reception Class.”); Bangkok Class Blog (“An impressive blog aggregating a variety of media from images to audio and demonstrating the wide raging learning opportunities that go on in year 4 at Kensington Avenue Primary School”) and PS3 Superstars (“A lovely and powerful view into the world of the P3 Superstars documenting their learning journey from toothpaste advertising to cliff rescue!”)

Whole School Blogsite of the Year

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The judges were after three things here:

  • A community commitment to blogging
  • Blogging beyond the classroom
  • Clear and consistent messages about e-safety, comment policy and content.

The winning blog is Sir John Lillie Primary School which scored very highly in all areas, especially having clear and consistent messages about e-safety, comment policy and content. Judges commented “I really think that Sir John Lillie Primary School’s blog ticks about every box. It demonstrates the learning that is happening at the school perfectly, right from Reception to Year 6. It feels truly collaborative which gives it an excellent community feel. I especially loved the brainteasers, the use of online apps such as wallwisher, the links to BBC bitesize and games on other school websites all of which encourage learning at home. It felt like it reached out in just about every direction. Really well done!”

Bearwood Primary School were so close to winning this category with a blog that was described by one of the judges as “Simply Wonderful.”

Ferry Lane came in third in this category with judges commenting “Powerful learning demonstrated through a whole school commitment to class blogging. The work of Ferry Lane Primary School deserves a special mention – their class blogs are wonderful and demonstrate what can be done with a bit of create thought and professionalism from educators. Any school wishing to improve their partnership parents should visit this website as a model of good practice.”

 

Teacher Blog of the Year

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Judges were looking for:

  • A willingness to share resources and ideas
  • Responsiveness to the blog’s audience
  • Regular and timely updates
  • Posts that provoke comment

The winning blog in this category is David Rogers who invited a lot of comment from the judges. “David Rogers encapsulates what edublogging should be about. A documentation of your own professional and personal learning through a blend of thinking, ideas, sharing, collaboration and challenge”. Another judge said “Loved this blog for many reasons but the main one was because David introduced me to Dream Teachers YouTube. Will definitely be visiting again.”

Technostories pushed David to the limit here with one judge commenting “a wonderful resource sharing blog full of practical advice and tips for teachers – I must read for all those interested in primary education.”

Third in this category was Mister Connor – judges said that this was “a great example of a teachers blog to support the learners at their school” and “there’s some excellent accessible content on Mr Connor’s Blog.”

 

Most Influential Blog of the Year

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Judges were looking for three things here:

  • Innovative ideas communicated effectively
  • Engagement with a wide community of readers and collaborators
  • Evidence of impact

The winning blog here is Box of Tricks. “A well written and profesional blog from a well respected educator”, this blog scored particularly highly in the innovative ideas communicated effectively section, as well as with evidence of impact.

The New Teachers Blog came a very close second here, a blog that has “a combination of thought provoking thinking and practical advice for teachers” and one judge “found myself reading this blog for a long time. Some big general teaching issues tackled.”

Third placed blog in this category belongs to ICT for Teaching and Learning in Falkirk Primary Schools which has “a great blend of tips and ideas for teachers with a growing blog audience.”

Huge congratulations to all of the winning blogs, but also to the hundreds of blogs that were nominated – the judges made comments on many of the blogs, and I will pass them back individually. An incredibly high standard from all blogs. I will leave the last word with one of our judges “generally wowweeeee!!”