Friday, September 19, 2014

Teaching Commenting Skills

WHY have a classroom blog?

Here is a video I made with my second and third graders about the value of blogging. I hope it convinces you to start a class blog!

Blogging has many parts: the post, the comments, and the sidebar.

If you do a good job with all of the parts, your blog will be more interesting.

Today we will focus on quality comments!

Content is key!

In our class, we evaluate our blog comments. A one-point comment is a general comment that doesn't add very much to the post.   Example: I like your blog. Please visit mine! 

A two-point comment adds something to the comment conversation. A commenter might compliment the writer in a specific way or add new information. Another idea is to make a connection. Maybe the post reminds you of an experience that you've had. Share that connection!  Try to end your comment with a relevant question. That way, an interesting conversation can develop.

What should I say in my comment?

Here is a video made by Mrs. Yollis' students called How to Compose a Quality Comment!  It offers FIVE tips to help you take your comments to the next level!

We like to open our comments with a greeting and end with a closing. We choose to do this as it makes it easier for us to follow the conversation within a comment section.

-For Advanced Bloggers-

Some bloggers like to use HTML code to make their comments better.  Learning to write HTML code, or HTML tags, is a somewhat simple way to take your comment to the next level.

HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) is a language.

*     *     *     *     *

To write HTML code, use the following symbols:

Important: Do not add a space between the HTML tag and the word or sentence.


1.  To put text in italics, place this HTML code around the text:



The sentence will look like this when published:

Bloggers should always proofread a comment before publishing.


2.  To make text bold, place this HTML code around the text:


The sentence will look like this when published: 

Bloggers should always proofread a comment before publishing.



3.  To make a hyperlink, it gets a little tricky.

Use the following HTML code around the URL and add your own link word/words:

  [The URL is the address of the web page. It starts with http://www…]

The HTML code below:


Will become this hyperlink when published:

                                                                 Mrs. Yollis’ Website

Sometimes it is hard to remember the HTML codes. I keep an HTML word document on my desktop with all the common codes, especially the one to create a hyperlink. Here is a video demonstrating how easy it is to a create a hyperlink if you have the code set up in a Word doc.

If you like to add fun are those codes!

What did you learn about quality commenting? 
 Why is it important to proofread a comment before pressing publish? 

Have you ever had a conversation in a comment section?



  1. Mrs Yollis
    What a sensational summary of blogging. Its a wonderful tool, as yourself and other educators know but its fantastic to think that other teachers and educators will be inspired by your post to start blogging on their own. I've said this so many times but you are such an amazing blogger and resources like this I believe make a world wide difference for educators.
    Mr Webb and Room One, Auroa Primary School, Taranaki, New Zealand.

    1. Our school year ends in December, usually the week before Christmas. We'd love to see that video it will be a hugely empowering moment for everyone concerned and we can't wait so thank you so much.
      Mr Webb

  2. Hello Mrs. Yollis and Grade 3,

    Another school year is underway and your class blog is a great way to share your experiences with the world. I have visited many student and class blogs over the years since I started blogging and have found them very interesting to read and add comments.

    Commenting is a great way to say, "I've seen what you have shared and wanted to let you know.”

    We blog and we should also comment. When we visit and comment on the blogs of others, they are more likely to visit our blogs. It’s how we share a connection.

    In the future, as many classes have now found and you also will, my comments can become so involved I have to write a post on one of my blogs in order to share words, links, photos, sound and video. I have very many interests and love reading posts encouraging me to think, research and share.

    The “How to Compose a Quality Comment!” is a great guide to get your commenting started. :)

    Ross Mannell
    Teacher (retired), N.S.W., Australia

    1. @ Mr. Mannell,

      Yes, another school year is starting in and I have a terrific new group of young bloggersI

      I couldn't agree more with your statement about how interesting class blogs are to read. There is so much to learn from other teachers and students!

      Thank you for the CD we just got in the mail! I'll be sharing it with the kids when I get back from Washington, D.C.

      My class and I look forward to connecting with you this year!

      Your pal,
      Mrs. Y♥llis

  3. Dear Mrs. Yollis,

    What a wonderful post to help your new students learn more about commenting and how to do it well!

    I have enjoyed blogging over the past few years and have learned so much by working with you! The comment section of my classroom blog was always my favorite part, and I enjoyed the online conversations between students, family members, and friends. Now that I'm retired, I am enjoying participating in your comment section! I have already had some wonderful conversations with your students, and I look forward to many more!

    Keep up the great work, Mrs. Yollis and class!

    Your blogging buddy,
    Mrs. Ranney


* * *
Getting feedback is important to our writers. Let us know what you liked or what you learned.

Steps to Comment:

1. Write your comment in the box below. Be sure that you have proofread it for spelling, grammar, punctuation, and capitalization. Students should have a parent check it!

2. Choose an identity. (If you have a gmail account, use it. If not, choose name/url. You can leave the url blank if you do not have a blog.)

3. Click "Publish your Comment". You may preview your comment before publishing if you'd like.

Important: All comments MUST be approved by me.
:-) Mrs. Yollis