I really enjoyed reading your first round of blog entries/comments and am, for the most part, very impressed with how well you are using the blog to engage with the class and each other. Keep up the good work!
Here are some of my thoughts about the blog assignments so far.
Never assume that your reader knows what you are writing about:
When you are drawing upon the readings, be explicit with your discussion. Don't assume that your audience has read the readings that you are discussing. Remember that we could have "silent" readers who aren't in the class. And even if we have read the readings, we might not immediately recognize what part of a certain text (or which text) that you are discussing.
Be very clear in your discussion:
You should always fully explain your points and link them directly with the readings. Mention page numbers. Follow up on statements like, "The author raised some compelling points about invisible labor," by describing at least one of those compelling points. Don't just write, "I think women are treated unfairly." Make sure to write how women are treated unfairly, what the causes of the unfair treatment are, and which readings discuss the unfair treatment.
Use the readings to support your points:
While it is fine for you to bring in your own opinions, make sure that you always work to connect your discussion with the texts. Relying on the texts, and specific examples that come out of the texts, enables you to focus your discussion and avoid statements that are too broad. Note: Using the readings is crucial because it is one very important way that you can demonstrate that you are reading the material.
Demonstrate a serious engagement with the readings and each other:
A serious engagement means that you spend time really thinking about what you want to write and how you want to respond to my questions or the blog posts of others. Always think about how to create entries/comments that can make us curious, that encourage us to ask questions, and that work to open up discussion instead of shutting it down.
Use more images:
The design for this blog is very basic so adding in images makes it a lot more fun to look at. Here is what I wrote about how to post images in my How to Blog, a primer:
a. First, find the image you want. Probably the easiest way to do this is by opening up a new tab or window, going on images.google.com, and putting in a key word to search. That's where I have found most of my images...like this one:
Because this is a basic primer, let's stick with google images. So, you have typed in "Brady Bunch" and found a great image of the family that you want to use. Click on the image. Then click on "see full size image". Drag the full-size image onto your desktop. Now you are ready to upload the image into your entry.
b. Switch back to the entry you have been working on. Put your cursor at the place in your text that you want the image to appear (like where you are discussing the Brady Bunch). Then click on the button (which is a few after the link button) that looks like an image and is called "insert image."
Click on the "upload new image" link and then browse on your desktop for the image of the Brady Bunch that you just found on google images. After you have selected the image, click on upload. Now that the new image is uploaded, you will be given a bunch of file options. It is up to you how you want the image to look, but here is what I usually do. I click on "display image in entry," "use thumbnail (with a width of 150 pixels)" and "Link image to full-size version in a popup window." In terms of alignment, pick whichever works best for you.
Finally, click on finish.
Want more advice on how to write on the blog? Check out these two entries, here and here, that I wrote about blog writing for students.