Google Sites

Lots of teachers are starting to wonder how to create an online presence for their courses. Teachers want to be able to create websites for students and parents to access at home.

There are several options for teachers to create class websites:

  • Your school board may offer website template pages that you can modify and tweak.
  • WordPress is a great content management system (CMS) that lets you create class sites and student blogs where teachers and students can post content and visitors can reply in the form of questions or comments. You can use a service like WordPress.com, Edublogs.org, or Educircles.org to get your class website up and running (or, if you’re tech savvy, you can install the free WordPress software on your own web host.)
  • Blogger is a blog publishing service operated by Google (and will apparently be renamed as Google blogs.)
  • Wikispaces is a service that lets teachers create educational wikis for their students. (Think Wikipedia for the classroom.) They still provide free upgrades to any wiki that is used exclusively for educational purposes. The sign up link can be found here.

And then, there’s Google sites.

Google sites is part of Google apps – a free collection of cloud-based productivity software. (Think Google’s version of Microsoft office in the cloud.)

  • Here are 5 reasons why you should consider using Google sites for your class website:
  • Before you invest a lot of time creating your class website using Google sites, you need to be aware of a limitation in the way that Google sites handles student users.
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    Five ways to use iOS 5 on the iPad 2 in the Classroom

    More and more teachers are starting to use their iPads in the classroom. It’s a great for taking notes in the classroom. Some schools are even using iPads with their students.

    iOS 5 turns the iPad 2 into an even more powerful teaching tool.

    Continue reading “Five ways to use iOS 5 on the iPad 2 in the Classroom”

    Save Time by Creating Customized Shortcuts on Your Computer for Frequently Used Sentences or Text Strings

    Teachers spend a lot time marking – assessing and evaluating their students. Best practices suggest that providing very specific qualitative feedback can produce great results. For example, 1) what a child did well, 2) where a child needs to improve, and 3) specific steps on how to improve.

    The problem is that writing out long descriptive written feedback is time-consuming. It’s much easier to circle a grade on a test or rubric than it is to write out a paragraph explaining to a student how to get a better mark.

    We can use computers to save time by creating customized abbreviations for frequently used sentences and text strings. In fact, lots of schools already use computer software and comment banks to speed up the process when writing report cards.

    If you’ve ever used copy-and-paste when typing out student comments, then this post should be able to save you some time.

    Continue reading “Save Time by Creating Customized Shortcuts on Your Computer for Frequently Used Sentences or Text Strings”