The Who, What, Where, Why, When of Setting up a Class Website

Laura is a writer and recent Cambridge graduate with particular experience in the area of education technology. She has worked with a variety of different education companies and is active in the 'edtech' community on Twitter, so she prides herself on always being in touch with the latest developments and exciting new tools in e-learning.

Who?

Schools around the world are starting to branch out digitally and take advantage of the opportunity to build an online presence for their classrooms. As well has having a school website, creating one for your class is a fantastic opportunity to forge an identity with your group of students and carve out your own online space to celebrate achievements, share resources and help your students let the world know who they are and what they’re doing!

Setting up a Class Website

What?

Different teachers use class websites in different ways. Some, like in this example of Mr Isis’s 2nd Grade Website like to use a class website to keep their students and parents up to date with everything that is going on in the class, from posting homework and assignments to classroom rules. This is a great way to keep everything students need in one place – notice how he has different pages for different subjects with handy links to resources that are being used in class to teach those topics, so students can always find what they need without the risk of paper hand-outs going astray and getting lost. Other classes, as in this example, use the website more to create an exciting record of what the class has been getting up to, with reports and pictures from field trips and other recent events.

 

Where?

There are tons of fantastic online sites ready and waiting to host your class website – try Webnode, a free and easy website builder, or the well-known and trusted Weebly, which even has this great feature specially designed for building class websites, and is student-friendly too so the exercise can be a fun one for your whole class to get involved in.

 

Why?

Setting up a website with your students is a great way to take your class online, get connected to other staff and students and engage with the digital community. Starting your own website is only the first step – once you have that online presence, you’ll be able to use it as the springboard for all kinds of digital connections, from forging communities and contacts with other peer groups all over the world to attracting speakers and academics to your classroom, as well as keeping parents and those with an interest in the school up to date with everything that’s going on in your classroom. It’s a great way to display student work and achievements, as well as posting news and pictures about recent school events, from sports fixtures to examination results. And maintaining the website is a fantastic way to introduce students to simple digital tasks like using online tools to create the layout and content of a web page – a vital 21st century life skill that they’ll be able to use for years to come.

 

When?

NOW! Classes around the world are getting online – don’t be left behind!

 

Image courtesy of Flickr, BarbaraLN