Blogger recently added the option to subscribe to a particular comments thread via email. This makes it much easier to follow a conversation on a particular post. When you comment, there’s now an option to get all follow-up comments to that post emailed to you. While other blogging software has had this for awhile, this is a nice addition for those of us who use Blogger. (Of course, if you’re really a glutton, you can subscribe via RSS or email to all the comments on The Fischbowl.)
For the three of you who actually visit The Fischbowl web page itself, as opposed to reading it in your aggregator, I’ve also added a few features.
I added the AnswerTips feature, which allows you to double-click on any word and small bubbles of information pop up from Answers.com. If you try it out, let me know how it works for you. If you have your own blog, here’s where you get the code to enable this on your blog. If you use Firefox, you can download an extension that will allow you to do this on any web page by alt-clicking (or right-clicking and choosing from the menu that appears). If you use Windows, you can enable this in all of your applications by installing this little app. Mac users can get a dashboard widget or enable it in their apps. I think this could be a handy little tool for students as they read unfamiliar words on their computers (in addition to the reading strategies we already teach them.)
I also added to the sidebar links to the latest five posts from the blogs of the cohort 1 teachers in my staff development, the cohort 2 teachers, and from their class blogs (scroll down a little to see them all). This is in addition to the links to the blogs themselves that were already there. Since there are a lot of blogs and some of the folks aren’t particularly prolific, this allows visitors to see at a glance who’s posted lately. I’m still thinking about how to incorporate this onto our Learning Network page on our school’s website (which currently has just my shared Google Reader items on it).