What is our online global audience?

Since beginning our blogging journey, I am constantly trying to show the children the potential it can have on improving their writing. Giving the children an audience provides a purpose for their writing. They carefully consider their writing which provides them with a more focused approach which has a knock on effect to improve their writing.

It is sometimes hard for children to see how global their work can spread. Throwing numbers around doesn’t always enthuse the children to carry on blogging. Over the past week I have tried a little experiment to try and give the children a visual picture of the global audience available through sharing work online.

Just over a week ago, two classes from my school made their own versions of the latest internet meme – Harlem Shake. Here was our effort:

As much as the children loved making the video, there was a real purpose to it. Youtube provides in depth analysis of all the views the video recieves, from the demographics to the gender and platform used to watch it. I wanted to use these statistics to inspire the children to see how global our audience can be and further prove the benefits of blogging to showcase their writing.

First I downloaded the report from YouTube showing all the countries and the amount of views (3500 in a week.)

I then provided the children with a blank world map:

The children then used the app Globe to locate the countries and colour them in depending on the amount of views. The children had to think of their own key to show the amount of views. It was a fantastic exercise for children to further their geographical understanding of the world. It provided them with the rare opportunity to really study and investigate the location of different countries.

They were amazed to see how far and wide the video had reached. It completely inspired them, knowing that this is the potential audience for their writing and other work. I finished with this thought for the class:

If this is how many people watched you dance for 30 seconds imagine how many would read a story? 100 word challenge? or more?

The finished maps gave the children a clear visual picture to back up all my discussions about the potential of blogging. They were able to clearly see how much of the world saw our school! I am hoping this will then encourage the children to blog even more knowing their work can be read by thousands of people.

Most blogs have tools that will show maps of where visitors have come from, Clustrmaps for example. I chose to use the video as I hoped it would be able to give us a quick and concise picture of the potential audience by using a popular and current trend. The idea was to inspire the children to blog and I believe it has definitely served that purpose well. It also provided the children with a great opportunity to learn about different countries around the world.

Cross-posted from Mr P’s ICT Blog

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