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A Feedly User Guide: Great for following student blogs and replacing Google Reader

So you have a student blogging project and it’s overwhelming to keep track of them all?

So you are going to miss Google Reader and you are looking for a replacement?

I got your answer right here-

Feedly

Welcome Screen2

What is Feedly? Well if every RSS reader was a baseball player then Feedly would be:

Trout1

Mike Trout the MLB Rookie-of-the-Year 2012 (Should have been MVP)

So FEEDLY basically takes all of the magazine and blogs you follow online and allows you to put them in categories, view them by publication date, mark read, save for later etc… it’s pretty awesome. I use my FEEDLY to follow my student blogs. You can read them here: http://reframedexperience.wordpress.com/

Sounds great Mr. T. how do I get started? Well first you are going to want to use your Chrome Browser and go to the Chrome Store and download the free Feedly Chrome extension.

Feedly Chrome Store2

Open a new tab in your Chrome Browser then click on where the red arrow is pointing then search for Feedly and install it. Next time you open a tab in your browser you’ll see the Feedly extension. 

Okay Theriault. Got it. Now what?

Well now you open the program and start adding websites or blogs. I login using my Google account, but you can login using other means.

So you go to the magnifying lens on the top right and a pop-up window will appear. Cut and paste or type in the url of the student blog or online magazine.

adding feeds or blogs2

Then just click the +plus sign and it will be added to your Feedly. Cool. But wait there’s more!

You can then add the blog to a category. I created a category called Sophomore Blogs 2013 that will contain all thirty of their blogs. That way I can quickly see who has posted lately and how many posts they have created.

Add to a category2

Sometimes I will put a weird code next to the plus sign above your categories. I just delete this and continue. You can create as many categories as you want. Perhaps one per period, subject, or other ideas that you have. You can also put personal categories in or perhaps categories for your PLN or Professional Development reading sites.

There are other features available:

Share and Preview features3

  • The Red arrow is where you can change your preferences for how the site works. Tons of choices there.
  • The Green arrow are for all of your sharing choices. You can even go into the preferences folder and add sites to share to.
  • The Blue arrow is where you find the “Preview” feature. It’s awesome.

preview feature is awesome2

When you click on the “preview” button on the top of each post it will open the post from the original site in a pop-up window right inside of Feedly. What’s really cool is then you can use any of the WordPress buttons. You can reblog, like, comment etc… right from Feedly. When I found this feature I felt like I had just seen this.

trout catch

I get to watch fifteen more years of this at Angel’s stadium. My 12 year-old son is so happy. 

Another great feature for teachers (yes even more) is the index view. You click on “Index” on the left side of your viewer and you can see this:

Index easy to see who is posting the most2

It’s hard to see on this photo, but next to the names of the blogs are the number of posts each blog contains. That’s right you can quickly see how many total posts each of your students have.

And lastly but not leastly (yeah I know that’s not grammatically correct, but nothing about Mike Trout’s first full season was what anyone expected either.)

I had a teacher on Twitter complain that Feedly was too graphic (or full of pictures) for them. Well… you can just change the view style. There’s a ton of choices: magazine, list, grid, calendar view etc… just click on the button that the red arrow is pointing to and customize the view of the main feed to your hearts content.

you can change the types of views2

So don’t despair about the disappearance of Google Reader and don’t avoid assigning students blogs because you don’t know how you’ll keep up with the work load. Just use Feedly. Don’t miss this amazing program. Try it and I think you’ll agree that it’s a keeper.

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