Utilizing Classroom Web Pages for Student Engagement: Part II

By Eric Antuna on February 25, 2010

Here's an idea for organizing your classroom website to make it more meaningful for students and for their parents. 


When I sat down to design my website for the classroom, I wanted to make it meaningful and appropriate for students to use in the classroom, as well as use at home and during off track time. I decided to organize the website around the skills and strategies from our curriculum. Since we're required to teach the standards using the district adopted curriculum, I thought that posting activities and resources online for students use would be the best way to help students master that week's skills through the use of online content.


In our district, the adopted curriculum is Open Court Reading. In second grade we have 6 units, and each unit is divided between 5 and 7 stories each with their own skills and strategies. I created a separate page for each story and posted the pertinent information that corresponds to that story. Here is a sample of what I have done for a particular unit:


The Home Page (Note that the units are incomplete!)


Unit Home Page

Unit 4: Fossils


Fossils 


The Dinosaur Who Lived in My Backyard


Top of dino 
Bottom of dino 


You can see the different skills under phonics, comprehension, and word analysis and under each of those headings, you can see a link to an "Activity 1."  These activities are interactive online activities I found after searching the web. It's the same activities that you can find on fabulous websites like www.scholastic.com or www.gamequarium.com.  You can also see that I post my own worksheets and homework that I've created for students/teachers to download and use in their classroom.


I won't lie - this is a lot of work. And working by myself also makes it a lot of work! The units are incomplete, however, I do feel the hard work in creating the site makes for a much more meaningful experience online for students. In addition, if parents are asking how to help their students or if a student is absent for a period of time, they can refer back to the website to maintain, review or preview skills that will be taught in class.  


If you have any ideas, please share them below!


Thanks for reading!


Eric



Comments

Hi Eric, What a great idea to organize each theme! We use the same series. I have done several ppt and interactive skills activities using the themes, but it never occurred to me to put them on my web page. It makes so much sense to keep parents in the loop and also let them see the continuity through the year. When you say the units are incomplete, do you mean you don't post Dinosaur Fossils until you get to it in the unit? I'm not sure what you meant by incomplete. Great ideas. Thanks for sharing.

Cindy-

Sorry about the confusion! As much as I would like to have them all complete, with everything that's going on, I have created the "skeleton" but have not put in the actual content or activities for all stories. As you can imagine it's a lot of work just creating the pages, but finding content online and placing it online takes even longer. A goal of mine would be to get a committee together to look for content on specific stories/units and then compile them on the website for everyone to use. Thanks for the comment! Good luck!

-Eric

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