Making Blog-Based Classroom Websites

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As the primary school’s technology coordinator, I’ve discovered that getting teachers to make and regularly update web pages is a significant challenge. There will always be those who oppose technology for no good reason, but most people don’t want it. Most educators today work long hours outside of the classroom. Adding another item would be like putting the proverbial straw on the camel’s back. I set out to design a system that could be accessed quickly and utilized without much effort and that would be seen as a helpful resource by my instructors rather than a burden.

B2 Evolution, a blog software suite, has the features I needed to achieve this. Installing it is simple, and it’s free for most websites. For instance, I could pay just under $100 for a year of hosting from Host Gator. With that, I was granted permission to create an infinite number of websites, with endless storage space and transfer capacity, for use by an unlimited number of schools. Thanks to the Fantastico script installers it gave me, setting up B2 Evolution took two minutes.

 

You may be wondering why I went with B2Evolution instead of the more well-known WordPress. The key to making B2Evolution work for your institution is its support for sub-blogs. I built my primary site with the help of a program called Joomla, but you may use any site-creation program or even a WordPress blog if you want. As a result, I set up individual blog installations for each school year. Then, I used the option to make a new blog within the existing blog to make further blogs for each grade. This wasn’t as difficult as I made it sound, and now each of my teachers has their blog.

 

You’ll want to grab a handful of add-ons now to save time in the long run. You may quickly locate them if you use B2Evolution in your Google search. To name a few:

 

Widget Manager lets you design a uniform page layout for all your blogs simultaneously. At the same time, TinyMCE provides your instructors with a Microsoft Word-like environment. * Public Blog List that You Can Sort Lets You Organize Links Alphabetically and Include a Backlink to Your Site.

 

You’ll need to download them, uncompress them with Windows or another modern program like Winrar, and then upload the resulting files through FTP to set them up on your website. This isn’t as difficult as it seems. Free FTP software is widely available online. If you’re using Host Gator, for instance, all you need to do to access the FTP is enter your domain name and the credentials you use to access the Control Panel. Once you do that, you’ll be able to access your account. The next step is to locate the public HTML folder. Your b2evolution blog archives will be in one of those folders. If you set up a different primary blog for each grade level, you must upload the plugins into each blog installation individually. After that, you can skip uploading them to each teacher’s blog. The plug-ins should direct you to the correct location to upload, making the procedure straightforward.

 

Once the plugins have been uploaded, they must be activated by going to the global settings for each blog, selecting the plug-in tab, and installing the new plugins. While in the admin area, go to the blog that will serve as the template and remove all the widgets. Then, return and set up only the ones you’re interested in. The public blogroll is something you need since it will serve as a sort of menu. The calendar is helpful since it allows users to view past months’ content. For the same reason you need the back button, you need the search bar. Last but not least, the meta tools widget is what you need so that your educators can access their teacher blogs from any device.

 

Customizing the blog’s look and feel is an excellent feature of B2Evolution, as it is with most blog software. You may obtain many free templates to utilize for your site’s design by searching on Google. Like plugins, they can be activated in the control panel after being installed through ftp. Choose one theme for the entire school if you prefer uniformity, or download several and give teachers the freedom to express their individuality.

 

It would be best to do a few things before making your blogs accessible to the general audience. If you don’t want people signing up or leaving comments, you may turn that feature off in the settings. The only people who should be writing on these blogs are your teachers; doing so will expose you to spammers and worse. If you are going to go through the trouble of creating this level of security, you can safely disable the protections in place for things like Java, HTML, etc. If your teachers are copying and pasting from Microsoft Word, I’ve discovered this is a common source of mistakes.

 

It will take practice and experimentation to get the hang of things. In the end, you’ll have a great, fully-functional portal for your educators to use from any location with an internet connection. This can be done without paying for, downloading, or attending school for any necessary software. In conclusion, a whole set of websites for your school that your instructors will use may be created with time, effort, and $100. This essay should be helpful, I pray.

 

In addition to his role as an educator, John Daniels runs the news website tavernkeepers.com. His favorite topics to write about include European and Middle Eastern politics, history, and gaming.

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