This is a set of general guidelines for the use of weblogs (“blogs”) at Arapahoe High School. Blogs are considered an extension of the classroom and therefore are subject to these guidelines as well as the rules and regulations of Arapahoe High School and Littleton Public Schools. The use of school computers is limited to assigned schoolwork; personal blogs that do not pertain to classwork at Arapahoe High School should not be accessed from school computers. These guidelines are not meant to be exhaustive and do not cover every contingency. If you are ever in doubt about the appropriateness of an item - ask a parent or teacher.
Safe and Responsible Blogging
The most basic guideline to remember when blogging is that the blog is an extension of your classroom. You should not write anything on a blog that you would not say or write in your classroom. Use common sense, but if you are ever in doubt ask a teacher or parent whether or not what you are considering posting is appropriate. If you are going to err, err on the safe side. Here are some specific items to consider:
- The use of blogs is considered an extension of your classroom. Therefore, any speech that is considered inappropriate in the classroom is inappropriate on a blog. This includes, but is not limited to, profanity; racist, sexist or discriminatory remarks; personal attacks.
- Blogs are used primarily as learning tools, either as extensions of conversations and thinking outside of regular class time, or as the basis for beginning new classroom discussions. Either way, be sure to follow all rules and suggestions that are offered by your teachers regarding appropriate posting in your class.
- Blogs are about ideas – therefore, agree or disagree with the idea, not the person. Freedom of speech does not give you the right to be uncivil. Use constructive criticism and use evidence to support your position. Read others’ posts carefully – often in the heat of the moment you may think that a person is saying one thing, when really they are not.
- Try not to generalize. Sentences that start with words like “All” (e.g., “All teachers,” “All administrators,” “All liberals,” “All conservatives”) are typically going to be too general.
- Blogs are public. Whatever you post on a blog can be read by anyone and everyone on the Internet. Even if you delete a post or comment, it has often already been archived elsewhere on the web. Do not post anything that you wouldn’t want your parents, your best friend, your worst enemy, or a future employer to read.
- Blog safely. NEVER post personal information on the web (including, but not limited to, last names, personal details including address or phone numbers, or photographs). (Note: The advice to not use your last name is for your protection. Teachers may choose to use their last names for their posts/comments.) Do not, under any circumstances, agree to meet someone you have met over the Internet.
- Because your login to the blogging site (e.g., Blogger) is typically linked to your profile, any personal blog you create in class is directly linked to your class blog and must follow these blogging guidelines. In addition to following the information above about not sharing too much personal information (in your profile or in any posts/comments you make), you need to realize that anywhere you use that login links back to your class blog. Therefore, anywhere that you use that login (posting to a separate personal blog, commenting on someone else's blog, etc.), you need to treat the same as a school blog and follow these guidelines. You should also monitor any comments you receive on your personal blog and - if they are inappropriate - delete them. If you would like to post or comment somewhere and not follow these guidelines, you need to create a separate login to the blogging site so that it does not connect back to your class blog. You may not use that login from school computers. We would still recommend you follow the portion of these guidelines that address your personal safety (e.g., not posting personal information, etc.)
- Linking to web sites from your blog or blog comments in support of your argument is an excellent idea. But never link to something without reading the entire article to make sure it is appropriate for a school setting.
- Use of quotations in a blog is acceptable. Make sure that you follow the proper formatting and cite the source of the quote.
- Pictures may be inserted into a blog. Make sure that the image is appropriate for use in a school document and copyright laws are followed. Do not post any images that can identify yourself or others.
The following are some traits of successful bloggers:
- Their posts (or comments) are well written. This includes not only good content, but – because these are school-related blogs – also follows writing conventions including spelling, grammar and punctuation.
- Their posts (or comments) are responsive. They respond to other people’s ideas – whether it is a post by a teacher, a comment by a student, or an idea elsewhere on the Internet. The power of blogs is in their connectedness – they are connected to a larger community of ideas. Participate in that community.
- Their posts (or comments) include textual references to support their opinions. Adding quotes or links to other works strengthens their response.
- They participate frequently. To be part of the dialogue, you have to participate fully and consistently.
- They are respectful of others. It’s okay to disagree; it’s not okay to be disagreeable. Be respectful of others and their opinions, and be civil when you disagree.
Here is a sample* of what appropriate blogging looks like. (*This is actual work taken from an AHS classroom blog, with typos corrected.)
Drawing Electricity from the Sky
Examine Benjamin West's painting, Benjamin Franklin Drawing Electricity from the Sky (1805). You may access this painting via the following link: http://www.frankelec.com/west_fullsize.htm. You can also find the painting on page 87 of your yellow American Literature book. After spending a few moments with the painting, please respond to one or more of the following questions:
posted by Kristin | 9:17 AM
- What do you think the artist is trying to achieve in this painting? Consider the sometimes clashing roles of science and religion and how they function in this painting.
- What are your reactions to this painting?
- What do you think Benjamin Franklin thought of this portrait of himself?
1) The artist behind "Benjamin Franklin Drawing Electricity from the Sky" wanted to juxtapose religion and science in a similar environment. However, he was probably looking for more similarities than differences. That is, science and religion have always been thought of as mutually exclusive, but Benjamin West brought them together to show that they cannot exist without each other. Benjamin Franklin is depicted as drawing science (electricity) from the heavens (God). The two are intertwined, for science seeks to explain the ways of the universe as designed by a creator, and the creator uses the natural laws of science to govern his kingdom.
2) I really like the way Benjamin West brought science and religion together into a mutual package/relationship. It calls for more harmony and balance in society, instead of the polarized world we live in today.
3) Initially, Franklin may have resented the connection between himself and religion; being a dissenting agnostic himself. However, Franklin, who holds himself in high regard, would appreciate the intonation that he serves as a transitive between science and religion for all people. He also knew that religious people would hold him in higher regard if he was portrayed not as blasphemer, but as a servant of God seeking to know the ways of the heavens.
In the painting of Benjamin Franklin, he looks like he is trying to figure out what electricity is conducted from, in this case the metal key, and how it relates to science. In the background, there are children that look like something that Michelangelo would draw on the ceiling in which it represents the heavens from above. He looks like he is showing that there is a greater connection to science and to religion than there is or there should be a bigger connection.
In this painting, my first reaction was that I just saw Benjamin Franklin holding the key and thought back to what I had learned in elementary school. We all learned some time in our life that Mr. Franklin was the one who discovered that metal had a connection some how to lightning and that's how electricity was conducted, but what we didn't realize is its connection to religion. After analyzing the painting at a closer look, I saw the children in the background and it simply symbolized that religion was somehow related to his religion.
After Benjamin Franklin saw the portrait of himself, I think he probably would have liked it and it proved to people the connection with science and religion at a greater glance. He might've also had a strong reaction to what it shows and how "crazy" he is to try and conduct electricity with lightning weather.
Elizabeth B. said...
1) I think that the artist is trying to show that he believes that science and religion should mix because even though they are very different, they coexist with each other. Religion cannot be 100% proven, but Science is all about facts and concepts that can be proven. Usually religion does not agree with science such as people evolving from apes not the seven days view that come religions have. Maybe the artist is trying to show that the two help explain each other and that they need each other to coexist for man to be able to explain the unknown.
1) Generally, science and religion have a very difficult time coexisting with one another. Take the idea of evolution and creationism. Only evolution can be taught in schools due to not only the Constitution of the United States but also because of their contrasting ideas. The picture, however, depicts the idea of the invention of electricity having something to do with the religion that Ben Franklin followed. This painting could potentially be saying that even though there is a separation of church and state and that even though the ideas of religion and science are on two entirely different ends of the spectrum, there is a possibility that the two do have something in common, share a common bond that could potentially affect life in the future.
I believe that the artist Benjamin West wanted to show that electricity was discovered through an act of spiritual not material enlightenment. He might have supposed that the means by which Benjamin Franklin stumbled upon his revelation where far too coincidental to present any other cause except a genuine miracle. The roles of science and religion coincide in the painting because the artist believed it was God who gave the discovery to Benjamin Franklin and the rest of humanity.
I admire the way the artist skillfully fused the two aspects of religion and science into one accumulative amalgam, but I do not find this relationship to be far fetched. However, I believe that the artist was giving Benjamin Franklin far too much credit. The painting depicts him splashed in holy rays of righteous sunshine, and assisted by the profits of the Almighty Himself, as if Benjamin Franklin were an electrocuted profit reaching towards the towering heavens with eyes thirsting for the betterment of mankind; all the while enthralled in rapture, clothed in splendor, and beset upon a moral foundation of stone.
Benjamin Franklin would have looked at the picture and laughed at the fact that our nations love for his acclaimed heroism was ever taken to such an extreme.
Wow, Jacob, those are some powerful statements about the holiness Franklin seems to posses in this painting. I would have to agree with you that the artist does make him look like a divine god. I also think that Franklin would have been offended by this portrait because he does not believe in angels or any other religion; he said himself he was an atheist. He would not appreciate that it looks like he discovered electricity with the help of angels and not on his own.
This made milk come out of my nose! I find this painting to be more humorous than powerful and awesome. Benjamin Franklin did invent, discover, and improve on many aspects of daily life including his own self-improvement. Really this painting makes science and religion come as a whole under Benjamin Franklin as "lord of the universe" it seems. The painter did an excellent job, and Benjamin Franklin may secretly have liked it but wouldn't have admitted it with his Quaker buddies around.
Raychel H said...
I think the artist was trying to convey a point that what Benjamin Franklin did was truly a miracle. Also that he had angels working with him and helping him achieve such a great thing. Whether it be accidental or completely on purpose, Benjamin Franklin DID discover electricity and the painter wanted the world to see his opinion on this event.
I think this is a very interesting view of the discovery of electricity, I never really thought too much about it before.
I think that Benjamin Franklin's reaction would have been somewhat humorous, although I'm sure he liked being portrayed as such an important person, he probably didn't feel that a reaction like this was necessary.
1) I believe that the artist is trying to achieve the fact that what some may invent, without a little help from God would never have come true. Maybe the lightning storm that helped create the possibility of electricity was made by God. Without it electricity would not have been discovered on that stormy night. Or would it? If you look at Franklin's left hand in it is a piece of paper. Assuming this paper is his thinking behind the idea of electricity, it is depicted in the painting because it shows that with his thought process he was able to create an idea that changed the human race and how we live forever. If one idea written out on a small piece of paper can change human race forever what can a big piece of paper do?
Cayleigh B said...
In this painting, it seems that the artist is trying to portray that what Benjamin Franklin did was not necessarily an act of genius, it was more a miracle. If you look at how the light comes down on Benjamin, it only illuminates his head. The rest of his body is dark. The angel, standing beside him however, is fully illuminated. This could be taken that Benjamin Franklin did not really discover electricity, it merely just fell into his hands. It was all just a miracle, a coincidence.
The painting is depicting the way the artist himself views Franklin and his inventions. Not only did the painting show that Franklin shouldn’t be the only one credited for his invention of electricity, it showed that the children and a higher power created the experiment and benefited from electricity. The picture took me a while to view and see all of the different perspectives that the artist was trying to portray. Franklin probably thought that this was a crazy painter with odd ideas about how his incredible invention came to be.
Personally, I thought this painting was very annoying. Benjamin Franklin is put on a pedestal like a god while the angels are helping him pull electricity out of the sky. Where is the electricity coming from- God? If so, why does this painting make Ben look so amazing? He didn't MAKE it. I think the artist is trying to portray Ben as admirable, and I'm sure Ben loved that he looked so good.
Katy L said...
In this painting I believe that Benjamin West is trying to show us that Ben Franklin was very strong in his faith. I also think the painting is trying to portray the idea that although science and religion beliefs are very different, they may relate somehow.
My reaction to this painting is that Ben Franklin did not discover electricity by himself, but God and the angels helped bless him with knowledge.
I think that this painting is quite funny and maybe even a little ridiculous. It's making it seem like Ben Franklin had done something that could relate to the power of God. Quite flattering I must say. Pulling electricity from heaven? I guess I can understand why this painting was done; it was because the artist obviously was or is a fan of Franklin, and his "invention", however I still think it's a bit much to compare the discovery of electricity to a supposed "miracle from heaven".
I think that Ben Franklin must have thought he was some sort of instrument in the hands of God. That's cool by me. I think its a little prideful if convinced himself of that. For all I know though, maybe that was his destiny, kind of deal. Ben can be credited with discovering electricity I guess. But it still took many more years and other men to learn how to harness it. I think the painting is misleading because it suggests that Ben gets all the glory.
Quite personally I believe this painting is a little ridiculous. It is as if the artist is trying to make Ben resemble some sort of a god. He certainly discovered electricity, but he himself did not MAKE it. I believe this portrait could be interpreted in several different ways. Take for instance, it could be humbling - the way it shows the dwarfs and angels assisting him. In a way showing that he himself did not do all the work in discovering electricity. Yet I do not believe that the painting was meant to be interpreted that way, especially if one takes into consideration the smug look that is upon Ben's face. The way I view the portrait is I resent the way the little dwarfs and angels in the background appear to be his slaves. I believe that Ben would have appreciated this painting, especially after reading the assigned short story about him, he seemed to think of himself very highly.
In my opinion I think that the artist of this painting views Ben Franklin as a median for a higher power to reach humanity. Franklin, in this painting, was willing to reach for this opportunity. It's as if the angels have been holding this string up... just waiting for some human to jump at the opportunity to "make this invention." I think that Franklin was a very knowledgeable man, but I think that he gives himself too much credit. I believe that this artist is also trying to show that Ben Franklin shouldn't give himself as much credit as he does.