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A web presence is a great way to stay connected with, parents, students, and the community. Calendars, newsletters, assignments, tests, class projects, and any other great things that are going on in your classroom or school can be shared out.  My favorite way to have a web presence is the creation of a teacher website.  I have not found an easier way to create a teacher website than with Weebly.com.  With Weebly you do not have to have any prior experience of website building.  If you can use a mouse and know how to drag and drop, then you can create a website with Weebly.  Let me show you how.

Getting Started

The first step is to go to www.weebly.com and create an account.  Like most sites, you will need a valid email address and create a password.

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Once you have signed up and signed in, then you will need to make some decisions.  The first of these is to choose a theme or layout for your website.  You can choose a theme with pictures, that you can replace with your own.  The pictures you see on the themes are there just to show you what it looks like.  You can easily change them out with your own.  You can choose a theme where the pages of your site display down the side or across the top.  To see all themes, click on the design tab at the top and choose Change Theme at the left.

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Once you have chosen a theme, you are ready to start building your site.  To do that, click on the build tab at the top.  You will also see several buttons at the left.  Most of the buttons are available for your free website.  If you see a star on the button, those are for a paid for account.  To use one, simply drag and drop it with your mouse over to your webpage.  Titles, text, images, maps, buttons to create links and more are available.  You can easily drag the components and rearrange them once you have them on your page.  If you want to create columns, simply place a component to the right or left of one you have already place on the page.  Look for the red line that appears when you drag each component over.  This line indicates where your object will be located.  To delete a component, simply hover over it with our cursor and click the blue x in the top right corner of the object.

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To add more pages to your website, click on the pages tab at the top of the page.  Click on the orange add page box and give your new page a name.  You have four choices of how you would like this new page to look.  The tall header is the same as your home page.  The short header gives it a smaller picture.  The no header leaves the picture out and the landing page gives you a variety of a picture with text around it.  From there you can click save and edit to begin work on the new page.

 

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When you are ready for the all to see your site, you will have two more decisions to make.  Sometimes it asks you this at the beginning.  Remember, this is a free tool and the order of operations can change at a moments notice.  You will need to decide you want to name your website (Site Title) and also what do you want your parents, students, and community members to type in to get to your website (Site Address or URL)?  The Site title can be anything you want.  The site address can only be used if no one else in the world is using it.  For example, www.google.com or www.ebay.com are already taken.  If you choose 6gradepumascience.weebly.com, it may not be taken.  For the free version of weebly, you must have it end with weebly.com.  We are all about free right now.  To get to this part, go ahead and click publish in the top right corner.  These questions should automatically pop up, unless they occurred after sign up.

When you have successfully published your site, you will see the following announcement.  This is to show you that your site was published and also that the name you chose is available without the weebly.com on the end of it.  That is great if you want to pay.  This little announcement will pop up every time you publish any changes on your website.  If you are happy with the free version, like me, then simply click on the blue and white “x” in the top right corner.  You can now go to your website by typing in the site address that you chose.  You will now have a web presence that you can begin promoting.

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Additional Resources

If Weebly isn’t your thing there are other great website creation tools out there that are good for educators as well.   Wix and Drupal are a couple of them. Drupal does not include web hosting so there could be an additional cost if you go that route.  Google sites is also another free option that you may want to consider.

Suggested Uses

  • Stay connected with students and parents
  • Provide an online hub for class resources
  • Share your lessons so they can be reviewed
  • Have students interactwith your lessons online
  • ???

Why It Matters (Teaching Rubric)

The essential teacher competency of Effective Lesson Design (competency 1.1) includes addressing individual student needs and increasing student engagement.  Using a website to organize your digital lessons and resources helps make your lesson available to your students on their schedule adressing at least some student needs.  Adding digital resources through your website can certainly add to engagement as well.

The Challenge

If you don’t have a teacher website, I encourage you to give it a try in the near future.  It is a great way to communicate and share what is happening in your classroom with parents and the community.  Today’s challenge is imagine  how you would use a teacher website and how it would benefit you as an educator.


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Jeffrey Tron
I graduated from the University of Southern Indiana in 1993. I got my masters degree in education in 1999 from Indiana Wesleyan University. I taught 6th, 7th, and 8th grade at Helfrich Park STEM Academy for 17 years. While there, I was the technology coordinator, student council rep, book coordinator, and I ran the announcements on the television studio. I taught reading, English, mathematics, social studies, science, and health in all three grade levels. In the summer of 2010, I worked for the IDOE to help implement the Indiana Science Initiative. I led several workshops around the state helping teachers integrate notebooking and hands-on science kits in their classrooms. During the 2010-2011 school year, I taught fourth grade science at Fairlawn Elementary School. I am currently an eLearning Coach for an elementary school, two middle schools, and a high school. I love technology and I love teaching and helping teachers. Put the two together and you have my dream job. I am very excited about being an eLearning coach and helping others implement technology into their daily instruction.

43 COMMENTS

  1. I like the idea of blogging with my Weebly, but I’ve struggled getting it to work. I’m wondering if I can link up my Kidsblog site to my weebly and make it work together. Has anyone done that? My Weebly is nice because I can put many different types of information on it, and both parents and students can easily find what they need.

  2. I love Weebly! Three years ago, our department bought weekly pro and I was given a website that I can update. I spent four days making that website exactly what I wanted and it has really transformed how I teach. It is wonderful because it allows me to keep all of my digital resources in one place that I can access for years to come. My kids like it because they are able to go in and watch videos, access notes, or do other enrichment actives when they do not understand a concept. They also know exactly where to go when they are looking for work that we have done or if they need to go back and look at something because they missed school. I post everything there! Weebly is fantastic in my classroom!

  3. I have used Weebly in the past and it was great, but when my district went to 1:1 in K-12, I found myself using district websites, My Big Campus, Remind, etc. for most of my communication needs rather to have my own page. I agree that is was very easy to set up and use, it just wasn’t want I chose to use for my classroom.

  4. I could not function without my Weebly websites. My teaching partner Chad Fetscher and I took up the Weebly banner four years ago and have never looked back! It is vital to our Shepard Academy classes which rarely use a textbook. I also have a Weebly site for my traditional AP Literature class. Using a Weebly site saves reams of paper, makes information available to students day and night (no more “I lost the handout!”), has lots of great features (for free!), and is visually engaging and appealing. Feel free to visit my sights and contact me if you have questions.
    and http://mrscoyapenglish.weebly.com/

  5. We have a teacher page listed on our school website but it does not allow for much creativity. Weebly looks like a more attractive way to make websites. Rarely do my students access my page through our school site even though I post daily assignments and other information. Weebly may get students to buy into more of online sources that I post.

  6. I have been using Weebly in the computer lab for two or three years! I set it up as an education site, then the students didn’t have to have individual email accounts. It is so simple to use just click and paste. We didn’t publish our websites for security reason, but the students enjoyed making a website. Our parish is using Weebly to make our parish website!

  7. I know my technology teacher uses this in her classroom has used this for a while now. However this is something I’m just now learning about. Looks very interesting and look forward to trying it out with students.

  8. Love, love, love my Weebly! It is SO user friendly Andy students can easily access links w/o worry of typing an incorrect address! I’d highly recommend starting one if you haven’t already. Limitless ideas!!

  9. Forgive the hyperbole, but I’m not sure I could live without Weebly (mrbarringer.weebly.com). I use it to run all of my classes. I post agendas, bellringers, assignments, and resources. It’s a massive time investment at first, but when you’re done, you’ve got a database of resources and agendas to draw from, and it’s arranged exactly the way you want it.

    I also have a Weebly for my yearbook (bosseyearbook.weebly.com) and my speech team (bossespeech.weebly.com).

  10. When EVSC shifted to the new website design this fall, our teachers felt the impact of the change. We were all concerned that we wouldn’t have our teacher sites that we had grown to know. After the initial distress and fear of having to learn something new, we decided to give Weebly a try. We soon realized that change can be for the best. Many of our teachers have now created Weebly websites to communicate with our parents. Even our PTA jumped on board and created a Weebly site. Weebly is user friendly and much more appealing than what we were using in previous years. It’s nice because you can start out with just using the basics and progress into doing more as you have the time.

  11. Welcome my friends to the wonderful world of Weebly! This site has literally changed the way that my teaching partner Heather Coy and I instruct our classes. It is a one stop shop for posting information, linking to sites, playing videos, classroom blogs, class polls, providing instructions, rubrics, handouts, additional handouts for those students who always seem to need two of everything,and many other features. Mrs. Coy and I have presented at the E-Revolution Conference on the classroom uses of Weebly and have nearlly convereted the entire Social Studies and English Departments to utilizing the site for their classes as well. Please feel free to checkout our sites for ideas and if you would like I would be glad to provide some additional instruction on using the site. http://www.shepardacademyjuniorblock.weebly.com

  12. Currently I use WordPress for my class website. I like the blogging feature. I like that I can go back to dates from previous years, see what I taught, change the date, & repost. It is like having an online lesson plan book with all of my links. Everything is ready to go. I do have my students create Weebly websites. They do this for projects & portfolio purposes. Another option is https://www.yola.com/. It is free.

  13. We use Canvas as our Learning Management System which seems to be structured similarly to Weebly. I do use mine to put resources out for the kids like audio books for novels they are reading. I’ll post reminders about things happening in their classes and practice tests. Also, my tweets and sketchnotes about content in class are synced to my homepage so kids can see that stuff too.

  14. I have started a weebly website to share resources and therapy ideas a while back. Weebly is very easy to use and fun. The updates they have made have helped make it even better!

  15. Our 1st-3rd teams use Weebly to communicate all classroom happenings. Having all resources in one spot gives parents an easy go-to and alleviates frustrations that arise from being ‘uninformed’. For instance, our teachers put class schedules on the site. This lets parents know which days students would have PE and need uniforms/tennis shoes. Small instances of communication management can keep the peace…and keep the conversation about learning. Also, short videos that correlate with classroom work can be posted for parents to reference when they are unsure how ‘things are being taught these days’. Again, attempts to prevent frustration and keep the conversation about student learning.

  16. I have a teacher who is exploring the idea of having students start creating eportfolios using Weebly. Weebly is so incredibly easy for kids to use. It is very intuitive and our kids love experience success in creating something that expresses themselves through their own eyes. We recently purchased a new LMS in our distirct: Haiku Learning. One of the beautiful things of Weebly is that it can be embedded directly into our LMS. Parents and students can access the LMS for materials for all classes, but Weebly allows flexibility for teachers as well to organize their classes in ways that make sense.

  17. I have started several Weeblys for various purposes. I never quite finish them and post them. I need to get back to this page as it has a lot of potential. The problem is, there are so many things that take precedence and this falls to the side. Testing, evlauations, documentation, testing, …..

    • As with any technology, it may be useful, but you really have to ask if it is just a fun thing or is it something that will make things more functional and engaging in your classroom? Does it fill a need? Does it replace a different system in your proceedure that can make things more efficient? Weebly is a great resource as are all the resources in the 30 Day Challenge. However, I encourage you to not feel like you have to use every resource. The goal of the challenge is to get you thinking about possibilities and make you aware of options in technology and education. The conversation about how to use the resource is a valuable one and will hopefully lead you to know whether it is something for you and your classroom.

      That said,.. How would you see using Weebly in your classroom if you did implement it?

      • Kris, Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the resources. It takes away the pressure of having to “do it all” in this fast paced world of ours. I will definitely ask myself how effective a resource will be for me and my students, before just diving in.

      • I have actually created a successful Weebly. I used it to create a learning path for my 3rd grade Social Studies unit on Native Americans. I am thrilled with how it turned out. The ease of use and flow that the students can easily navigate is awesome! I like how they can communicate with me through the weebly as well as post assignments in it. All in one, is a nice feel. I plan to continue to create thematic units in this format.
        Here is my link. http://joburns.weebly.com/

  18. Weebly is one of the essential communication tools that I use in my classroom. I built my website over the summer and have really enjoyed it. It’s relatively simple to use. I do think that when first beginning, it takes a little playing around with before the layout makes complete sense. (The steps given above are wonderful though!) The themes it offers are great and Weebly offers a wide variety of themes without purchasing the pro version. Weebly also gives you a lot of control as far as layout is concerned. This is a communication tool that offers endless possibilities.

  19. In this digital world we live in with digital natives it is important to have a variety of avenues available to find and share information. A Weebly is an easy and quick way to do this. When I had my EVSC teacher webpage I shared information about myself and the classroom. Parents were able to check when assignments were due and check out the work in class we had been doing. Weebly allows the same actions in a quick way. A teacher website is a great way to provide lessons that you did that day in case a student is absent they can refer to your site and stay informed. Even though a student misses they don’t have to miss the lesson. I think recording yourself doing the lesson and then posting it on a website would \allow struggling students to be able to refer to the lesson again to gain further understanding.

  20. I started one once (maybe at an eLearning conference); but haven’t went back to it. I know many of the teachers in my building use it instead of MBC. While I know I should, I can’t bring myself to have to update another thing just yet. It’s on my master to do list though.

    • Instead of just being on a list of to-do’s let’s look at a purpose for the online presence in general. Really the question is whether you as a teacher have one (online-presence)? If you do, great,.. How has it helped you in class? If not,.. What advantages do you see for having one? That way it has a purpose. If you currently have an online presence of some sort that is working for you, then there really isn’t a need to pursue Weebly. But if you don’t, or the one you have isn’t doing what you hoped it would, then Weebly may be a good alternative.

      • My current online presence for class is using MBC but then parents can’t access it so that is why I think I should spend the time with Weebly but I really like the ease of MBC and it’s assignments and drop boxes. My students like and appreciate the text reminders more than MBC but that is instant and quick to their phones.

        • Weebly is great, but as a response to your comments on MBC, you can make any group page in MBC public to parents. Then you just need to give them the group’s URL. No parent account required for that type of access. You can also have your students set up their MBC account with their cell phone number to receive txt notifications from MBC as well.

  21. I love Weebly. I have just started using it though. I haven’t gotten very far with it so far this year due to time (teaching 6 classes + 6 grad hours doesn’t allow for much extra time). My plan was to use it as a central communication hub for parents and students. I have spread the idea with some of our other teachers and they are looking at it as options as well. If we move to Google Classroom, I will probably use it for most things, but possibly keep my Weebly (or something else) to post updates about the classes for parents to see.

  22. I’m such a BIG FAN of Weebly! I used it for 3 years as a 4th grade teacher. The blog kept parents informed daily about what my fantabulous 4th graders did. It was also a great way to connect with my students outside of our time together. LOVE it!
    http://www.beardsbrains.com/
    Please feel free to steal any ideas on my 4th grade site.
    Weebly ROCKS!

  23. I have been using Google Classroom for a class portal containing materials and assignments. I have used Weebly for a website for my after school groups. I have used it to post pictures of events, project description and progress as well as a collection of related websites. I use it as a place to display our work and chronicle our successes.

  24. One stop communication stop. Websites are just another easy way to tell the story of your classroom. If you aren’t telling your classroom’s or school’s story, someone else is. Tech is your chance to let your parents and community know all the amazing things that are happening in your class on a daily basis.

  25. I have used Weebly for other occurrences outside of teaching, but it could be used as a wonderful tool for communication between teacher-parent-student. The site is very well maintained and very user-friendly. From prior experience, building a website from Weebly is very quick, depending upon how picky you are. Adding multimedia is very simple. I love the website-building site.

  26. These directions are great!! I’m going to use them with the Chrome Ninjas I work with. But I do have a question: What is it about Weebly that would cause a filter to randomly block it? We have teachers who have created Weebly sites and they are automatically blocked by our network filter. Our network manager can unblock it but days later it may revert itself back to being blocked without anyone on our end changing things. (We have the same issue with Google Sites). Is it something on Weebly’s end? I’m sure our tech guys know why this happens, but since we are talking about it I’ll ask here and get other opinions. Teachers get frustrated when they take time to create a website and try to use it, but can’t depend on it being upblocked for student access. It’s the #1 excuse I get from teachers who don’t have websites.

    • Web filters generally aren’t as black and white of a topic as one would think. There are often loopholes that allow for variance in the filter. Again, each web filter is different. With our filter, it uses “categories” to filter sites. Sites are placed into a category by the filter based on images, keywords, and social aspects of the site. Because the filter is not looking directly at the site itself it could be that something on the site triggers a category change. We have also had issues where the site is spammed with data and the filter changes the site to a blocked list to limit the spamming issues. Again there is lots of variance in web-filtering. The best advice its to be open and flexible. Blocks can be corrected with time, plan “B” and flexibility are important.

  27. I love making my own websites and linking them to the schools site. After all IT doesn’t give everyone access to changing the website. Making your own allows you to design a website that is easily navigated by the students. With the library, I have made websites for instructions on how to use the database INSPIRE, how to use our online catalog and other Powerpoint or Keynote presentations. I am interested in Weebly to see if it can add videos links easily. I really want to add book trailers to our website.

    • It is easy to create a link to your trailers. Also, if you have uploaded the trailers to YouTube, you can pull in a YouTube video via dragging the YouTube button over to your page. Click on the window it creates and you will see a control panel to paste in the URL of the YouTube video. I hope this helps! Thanks!

  28. I just started setting up a Weebly site last week. The goal is to create research and topic guides as well as to highlight resources to assist with classroom assignments. I would love to create something line with the USI Rice Library Research Guides at some point.

    • Is a free Weebly account limited to only 5 pages now? I signed up with my evsc.k12.in.us email but have a 5 page limit. Thank you.

  29. We are just now migrating our old classroom sites to Haiku Learning. I can see this as a great source for personal sites or student sites.

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