Time to promote a great new educational blog for Drama/Theatre students and their teachers!
Vineblogs was the idea of Jo Raphael (lectuer in drama education at Deakin University, Melbourne) and Helen Sandercoe and is otherwise known as The Vine Project. With the gracious assistance of James Farmer (edublog specialist) and the support of both Drama Australia and Drama Victoria, this new and exciting blog site has only been active for about ten days now, but already we have many Drama students and teachers happily blogging away!
The original idea of the project was to restrict the blogging to students creating drama performances using the theme of the 2007 World Drama Congress: planting ideas … with our thoughts, we make the world. And so a few schools agreed to be involved, namely Avila College (my school), Mount Waverley Secondary College and Yarra Valley Grammar (all from Melbourne). These schools have created ensemble performance structures for their current Year 12 students based on this theme and currently have students blogging about their projects. But now Vineblogs has expanded it’s brief to include anyone who wishes to blog about their drama experiences.
On Vineblogs you will see individual teacher blogs and group student blogs (where members post on the one blog). Blogging is a wonderful way to integrate technology in drama studies and allow students to journal their process of performance online. In the past week or so, I have watched my students get a thrill out of publishing their thoughts on the web and at the same time enjoy seeing others comment on their posts. Teachers should not be exempt from this process and are also encouraged to join their students and chronicle a performance project from an educator’s perspective.
Of course, there are some differences popping a drama journal online in the form of a blog. It’s public! So students have to be wary of their audience and not reveal personal information or ‘sledge’ other people in their class etc. Teachers should also be wary of one of the benefits of blogging, which is publishing images instantly to the blog. These could be of students in rehearsal etc, but be mindful of various permissions which may be required before publishing images of students online.
Well, Vineblogs is completely free and easy, too. If you’re not too comfortable with technology, there are great tutorials on the Vineblogs homepage. I moderate this particular blog site because I am a firm believer in the benefits of blogging for Drama/Theatre sutdents. So, if you’re interested, why not check out the site and email me if you need help or have any questions about the project and how to get involved.
You can publish a blog on Vineblogs instantly via email verification. You can be involved with your drama/theatre students at any level doing any performance project worth blogging (solo, ensemble or scripted play). Come on, join us! It’s fun, educational and your students will love it! Although based in Melbourne, Australia, we’d especially love to see drama students and teachers from interstate or overseas in other countries blog with us on the site, too!