One particular way that teachers are using technology today is by creating websites to engage their students when they’re at home. The websites can include homework assignments, reviews of class content, reading material, riddles, or anything else the teacher wants.
Creating a website, however, may sound daunting to some. After all, teachers are teachers, and not computer programmers. So if you’re a teacher who’s interested in creating a website to use as a teaching tool, how can you do it without investing loads of time or money?
One word: Wix.
Wix is a website building platform that even the most novice of novices can use easily and intuitively. What’s more, it offers both free and paid options, and you can use the free option with no guilt or qualms.
Wix features include:
Free sign-up: To start designing your website, just register to Wix and start running with it. As you design your site you may decide that you’d like to opt for a paid plan, and you can upgrade your membership at any time. It’s pretty easy to get sign in, but if you ever have any issues you can view this guide to logging in with Wix.
Paid plans: There are different levels of paid plans, and there are a few reasons why you might decide it’s worth it to pay a few extra bucks a month. These reasons generally include the need for more bandwidth and storage, as well as the desire for your own domain name. The most basic Wix plan can give you all of these things and costs $4.50 per month.
Templates: Wix offers hundreds of free templates, some of which are specific to subject matter (Creative Arts, Health & Wellness) or grade (Preschool, Elementary School, etc.). If you don’t want to choose a theme specifically under the “Community and Education” umbrella, you can browse through any number of templates until you find one you love.
Customization: Whichever template you choose, you’ll be able to fully customize the content. This includes the homepage, subheaders, images, blog, etc. It also means that you will be able to edit, add, and delete content whenever you want, which will enable you to keep a neat, updated website that students can navigate easily.
Mobile optimization: Wix offers the option to enable a mobile-friendly view of your site, so your students will be able to access it whether they’re on their PCs or smartphones. While you don’t need to enable this option, it’s definitely recommended.
Forums: You can add a free Wix Forum app to your site to allow student participation. This is a great way to involve students and create an open discussion space.
Advantages of Using a Website for Teachers and Students
Creating a website can involve a little bit of work, but Wix makes it as easy as it could possibly be. Plus, the advantages of using a website—both for teachers and students—are many. Teacher websites can:
Boost student engagement: Since many students have access to computers and smartphones every afternoon, a website can make them more likely to read their homework assignments, review, be prepared for class, etc.
Encourage communication and participation: Today’s favored medium of communication is online, not in person. Using a website allows teachers to communicate with students in the medium in which they’re most comfortable. Moreover, kids who may not feel comfortable raising their hands in class may feel more comfortable communicating and participating in discussions on your site.
Enable easy record-keeping: When you use a website, you can easily track what you’ve covered, what you’ve assigned, and what work your students have completed.
Increase parental involvement: Many parents who ask their kids what they learned in class are answered with a generic, “I don’t know,” or something similar. When teachers have websites, parents can easily see what material their children have been learning and what projects they’ve been doing.
Creating a Website? Do it Right
If you want to reap the benefits of using a website as a teaching tool, it’s important to do it right. While technology may make you shudder personally, remember that even young students tend to respond to it, which means that your website should:
Look nice, appealing
Be easy to navigate
And remember, while Wix has paid options (which your school might even cover), you can also create a lovely website using the free version. You may just be surprised at the positive responses you get from students and parents alike once your site is up and running.