Monday, April 25, 2011

Class Website - Beyond the Wiki

Your wiki page has served its purpose for years.  You used it as a repository of links to games and important websites.  You have relied on it to be a constant for your students, a place to call home.  As we begin looking to next year and how we can improve ourselves as teachers, you may want to consider creating a classroom website.

I don't have time to be playing with a website!

There is no doubt that it will take time to learn the tools and develop an effective site.  I spent many hours looking at other teacher websites and deciding how to shape mine.  It took me several hours more to build it and revise it.  However, I feel it was a worthwhile investment and keeping it up to date takes only 20 minutes every Monday morning.  Our Google Sites is a very easy to use tool and serves the purpose very well.

What benefit is there to having a website?

In my search for good examples of teacher websites, I saw two common themes:

-An information portal for parents.  Most, if not all, of the websites I viewed had a good amount space dedicated to providing information to parents about what is going on in the classroom.  A decent website could replace your weekly/monthly newsletter.  It is also a great place to give parents information about what their child is learning.

-An information portal for students.  A website is a great way to provide students access to review materials, videos, and worksheets that can help them at home.  Students that need extra help at home would have a place to go for guidance.  They would also be able to access the same links from home that they used at school.

Where can I see some good examples?

Below are some links to great sites that I have found and that I am using to try and shape my website as it grows.

Mrs. Mark - Fifth Grade
Mrs. Dunn - Fourth Grade
Mrs. Pearce - Third Grade
Ms. Winston - Second Grade
Mrs. Zider - First Grade
Mrs. Borne - Kindergarten

Want help?  Just ask.

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