I just about broke down in tears when Harold Love read his first blog entry today. It was very powerful, and his drive to become a writer inspired me and the other students. They gave him a round of applause. Please be sure to read Harold's first post. You will see it in a few days, along with most of the other students in this class. It's fun to sit around in class and listen while students read their work. You can tell they are putting their hearts and minds into their writing. The students have also generated many interesting story ideas. Soon we will be posting stories about Jackson Lain, a young man who graduated from Kenny Lake School eleven years ago. Jackson went on to join the Marines and complete three tours of duty in Iraq. He also toured Mongolia. Now he's an incredible artist and sculptor. I can't wait to share our stories that show the many sides of Jackson. We now have students working on stories about the Alaska State Fair, and in two weeks we will be interviewing Neil Hannon, who also has a great story to tell. Finally, one of our students is up in the mountains with some of our portable camera gear documenting a moose hunt with her dad. It seems as though this writers' workshop expands daily the boundaries of what is possible.
I can't believe how much fun it is to work on this site. Weebly has sure made the task easy and enjoyable. I now feel as though I have overcome all the tech hurdles that stood in the way. The plug-in for podcast works well, and the link from our video stories to the youtube channel runs smoothly. I think the students will enjoy showcasing their work on this site.
As many of you know, Kenny Lake students have produced some amazing technology projects throughout the years. Last year the state of Alaska honored two of these achievements by awarding our school $20,000 in technology grants which allowed us to purchase new software, computers, digital still and movie cameras that our students can use to capture stories of our community, state and nation. Check out this site for information about the awards. Hawknews.org is the website that will showcase this accomplishment. We will tell our stories using video, podcasts, and writing. My goal is to provide a creative challenge for our school's best writers while helping those who struggle with writing to realize the great joy that comes through story telling and written expression. This is just the beginning of our journey. Please check back often for updates.
Ray Voley is a junior high and high school teacher at Kenny Lake School who yearns for his own Walden Pond yet contemplates the singularity.
- Voley Blog