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teaching web design - suggestions?

Discussion in 'Computing and ICT' started by LinW2010, Jan 24, 2012.

  1. LinW2010

    LinW2010 New commenter

    Hi, my kids (mainly year 8s I'm talking here) love the idea of designing and creating a website, but their first question is "Will I be able to see it from home?"
    I would love to do websites with them that do get published properly, but have no idea how to manage it effectively - the issue is that I'd like them to be able to at least do some html, and work on design features, they're likely to forget passwords, and there's an issue about uncensored stuff from them going on the web.
    I also wouldn't want just a blogging site. I know wordpress can do actual pages as well, but there's still the issue of management.
    Has anyone tackled this and found a successful solution?
    At the moment we use serif webplus, which is also suitable for OCR coursework, but it's very little different from using any DTP software. Not sure the kids would cope with pure HTML, so looking for something in the middle if at all passible.
     
  2. LinW2010

    LinW2010 New commenter

    Hi, my kids (mainly year 8s I'm talking here) love the idea of designing and creating a website, but their first question is "Will I be able to see it from home?"
    I would love to do websites with them that do get published properly, but have no idea how to manage it effectively - the issue is that I'd like them to be able to at least do some html, and work on design features, they're likely to forget passwords, and there's an issue about uncensored stuff from them going on the web.
    I also wouldn't want just a blogging site. I know wordpress can do actual pages as well, but there's still the issue of management.
    Has anyone tackled this and found a successful solution?
    At the moment we use serif webplus, which is also suitable for OCR coursework, but it's very little different from using any DTP software. Not sure the kids would cope with pure HTML, so looking for something in the middle if at all passible.
     
  3. A little bit of HTML, then Dreamweaver?
    ( I am with our Top Form, age 12-13)
    Piers.
     
  4. djphillips1408

    djphillips1408 New commenter

    serif webplus to build is best with year 8's and host their sites with brinkster as has a very user friendly console panel.
     
  5. For my Year 8 class, we're working with KompoZer. We're working on a project that we're planning to submit to Global Schoolnet's International Schools' CyberFair. Registration is still open (and free) - it's a good way for students to see how their published work compares to their peers worldwide.

    They will put a static site together via a shared directory on the school network (take regular backups in case of accidental overwrites).This will be uploaded to the Internet for them to see and evaluate from home.

    I'd be happy to go over the stages we've gone through, and what we plan to do next if it would be helpful.
     
  6. Silent85

    Silent85 New commenter

    Is composer good for scaling ie learning html as well as wysiwyg?


     
  7. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    Might be worth checking what your school's safeguarding policy is regarding students putting images and personal details online. You might be expected to keep content anonymous and webpages free of images of the children themselves.

    Could you set up a website gallery as a sub domain of your school website, so it uses the same host? If so, you could pop a robots.txt exclusion protocol in its root folder that disallows indexing of pages and images by search engines.
     
  8. Kompozer is HTML generation, unlike WebPlus which is just a DTP whose printer driver generates HTML. It has a new version called BlueGriffon.

     
  9. pob1888

    pob1888 New commenter

    Serif webplus for KS3, HTML and Dreamweaver for KS5. I done a degree in webdesign and know some people who completed it without really being able to use HTML, bit of a joke.
     
  10. .... really ?
    I can understand why people use WebPlus at KS3 but at degree level ?
     
  11. Yep, I know all that.
    But at degree level , people should be using professional stuff HTML.
    If you know HTML you can use Page Plus more effectively, you see how it works. But Page Plus is useless as an intro to HTML - even Front Page is better.

     
  12. Sounds good (though I think you should maybe do ASP.NET or JSP and maybe even a little J2EE ?)
    I was just baffled by what I think you were saying, which was that some people got this degree who couldn't really do HTML - this knocks your first six items straight out :)

     
  13. pob1888

    pob1888 New commenter


    At degree level we were introduced to HTML and took it from their, we had to design sites using notepad and then moved on to Dreamweaver and we stuck to that the whole way through.
     
  14. pob1888

    pob1888 New commenter

    We worked on ASP after we covered PHP. As for people getting the degree, they could simply copy and paste code, they got other people to write it for them, there was only 2 exams in 4 years of the course, it was a bit of a joke (a bit like BTECs!).
     
  15. I have just completed a unit with year 8s on designing websites using Serif WebPlus and it has gone really well.


    Last year I did web authoring in HTML in Kompozer (which I found very unreliable but that's a separate issue) with Year 8s, but there seemed to be little thought going into the actual design aspect. Therefore, this year I decided to start web design by focusing on the design rather than code.


    From next year, we are planning on doing Web design with Serif WebPlus in year 7. In year 8 we'll do web authoring with HTML & CSS. In year 9 we'll do web coding with HTML, CSS & JavaScript.
     
  16. Not all units worked this way but, my favorite proff teaching java and SOA said this at the start of the unit. "You can use or share with friends anything you find out about on the web or from books, including code, at the end of this unit I'll sit with you, review your own code and comments and I'll ask any questions I need, this will let you show off how your system works." The results were excellent and the lazy students were never lazy on that unit. :)

     
  17. Some good points in the discussion but a few "gotchas" to look out for:-
    1. WebPlus is good - and free - but doesn't do everything.
    2. Kompozer, which has been advised, is a dead duck and has been replaced.
    3. BlueGriffonreplaces Kompozer and meets modern HTML and CSS standards.
    4. Java - forget it for web use in school.
    5. ASP - forget it for web use altogether. Its deadin the water.
    6. PHP, Ruby on Rails etc. - too much for normal school use.
    7. Javascript - good start, but look to using AJAX (better than PHP etc. in school).
    8. Dreamweaver - nice, but too costly. Forget it.
    Someone I think even mentioned FrontPage... for which they should be put up against the wall and shot! Never teach peope to use this abomination!
     
  18. Penny10p

    Penny10p Occasional commenter

    I was genuinely interested in what the degree involved as I am a bit long in the tooth and none of these degrees were around when I was at uni. It does sound like a good degree, but a bit worrying that people could more or less cheat their way through it!
     
  19. It is a bit misleading comparing AJAX to PHP. They do not do the same thing at all. In order to do anything particularly useful and custom/specific to your class in AJAX, you will probably need some form of serverside scripting such as PHP, ASP.NET, Ruby on Rails, etc (doesn't matter which you choose) and a web server that you have some sort of control over.

    In order to be able to do any AJAX, you will need a firm understanding in the basic of JavaScript. That is something that people trying to use AJAX or jQuery/<insert javascript framework here> tend to bypass in order to get to the 'exciting' stuff. (Not aiming this comment at you TheMagpie, it is just an observation from my time in the web industry and in school.)

    Rather than doing AJAX in KS3, I would focus on the basics of JavaScript and then move onto using a framework such as jQuery. I would consider AJAX later on when doing serverside scripting at KS4 or KS5, or possibly for particularly high achieving KS3 students.
     

  20. Bizarrely, that is probably true.
     

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