The Student Guide to Writing Comments

Communication and collaboration are important 21st century skills addressed by the ISTE Standards for Students:
Students use digital media and environments to communicate and work collaboratively, including at a distance, to support individual learning and contribute to the learning of others.
As Google Apps for Education, Google Classroom, and learning management systems continue to gain in popularity, students have more and more opportunities to work with others in an online environment, provide written feedback to their peers, and communicate digitally. This does not mean, however, that they all have the skills needed to do so productively and effectively.

As a result, we decided to provide our teachers with a resource to help students write better comments. After scouring the Internet for ready made resources, we found a variety of good information, but nothing that met all our needs. So we compiled what we found to create the information below.



How to Write a Comment
When posting a comment, whether in response to a teacher’s assignment or another student’s post or comment, follow a few basic guidelines to make sure your post is productive and helpful to others.


Read the Post You're Commenting On, Then At Least Scan it Again

Take the time to really know what you’re commenting about. No one wants to read a comment from someone who clearly didn’t pay attention to the original post.

Scan the Other Comments First

You don’t need to read every comment if there are tons of them, but do scan through them. The first person to make a certain comment is clever, the 10th person who says the same thing is annoying.

Give the Blogger the Benefit of the Doubt

If the writer says something that seems clearly wrong or is phrased in a way that seems rude, give them the benefit of the doubt. Don’t assume worst intentions; maybe they didn’t mean for something to sound that way, or got their facts from a source they thought was good, but wasn’t.
Don’t write a rude comment back; rise above and phrase things nicely.

Provide Context
You might know what you’re responding to, but other readers may not. Write in complete sentences, and include information about what you’re responding to in your response; just like you would when answering essay questions in class. For example, “I love that you spent your summer vacation in Italy. I’ve never left Colorado, but would love to see Europe.” Instead of, “Cool, I’d like to see that too!”
Agree to Disagree Politely
If you have a different point of view, go ahead and share it, but don’t attack the person you’re responding to. Think about how you’re wording things.  Try to make “I” statements, like, “I disagree. I think students should have less homework, not more, because….” instead of, “You’re wrong! Students should NOT have more homework!” Be sure to give reasons why you disagree as well. If you want people to see your point of view, you have to explain it!
Be specific
Everyone loves compliments, and people will like reading, “That’s awesome!” or “You’re a great writer!”, but your comments will be more meaningful and help the writer more if you’re specific. Tell them why something was awesome, or what they wrote that you really liked. That way they’ll know how to be awesome again!
Keep it simple
Most people don’t want to read an essay in response to their post. Keep things short and sweet by trying to limit your response to just a few sentences. Try opening with a compliment, add a suggestion or write about something you disagree with, then end with a question to keep the conversation going.
Proofread
Be sure to read over what you’ve written before submitting your comment. Texting language should be saved for your cell phone. Your teachers’ job is to help you become a better writer, no matter what subject he or she teaches. So use real words and then proofread them.  If your writing is full of spelling and grammar errors, not only will you be difficult to understand, but you won’t look very smart and can lose credibility as a result. Remember, comments can be read by everyone!
Ask questions
Consider asking the writer a few questions related to their post, if it’s appropriate to do so. Maybe they can add more details about something to improve their writing, or maybe they haven’t considered something in their writing. Help them out! “If students didn’t go to school, how would they learn to read?”
Additional Resources:
How to Write a Quality Comment - YouTube video that’s great for Elementary:

How to Write a Comment - An Adobe Voice presentation of the text above, best suited for middle and high school, and perhaps upper elementary:

http://voice.adobe.com/v/QKxx5xXyNe5
Bransford, Nathan. "How to Write a Good Blog Comment | Nathan Bransford, Author." Nathan Bransford, Author. N.p., 6 Jan. 2011. Web. 13 May 2014.

Fogarty, Mignon. "How to Write a Great Blog Comment." Quick and Dirty Tips. N.p., 20 Mar. 2009. Web. 13 May 2014.

Collier, Mack. "How to Write Great Blog Comments." MackColliercom Social Media Training and Consulting RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 May 2014

Comments

  1. I loved the video with children discussing the topic of comments and what should go into a good blog.

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  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  3. its great tips for commenting i read your lines .
    i think every person should be read this article carefully .
    student also get better ideas of commenting.


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  4. Communication and collaboration are much important in all various different fields and these are very helpful to gain success. Thanks for writing about commenting on blogs. blog writing services

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