I have recently stumbled upon one of the greatest things I have ever come across for distance learning: GOOGLE SITES! Have you heard of this? I didn't even know this was a thing until recently and oh boy, am I sooooo glad I did.
We will be using Seesaw this year in conjunction with our in-person classes that we are going to attempt to begin on August 17th. Seesaw is an amazing learning platform that will be extremely beneficial to our youngest of learners. I plan on posting more information about Seesaw very soon! But for today, I want to focus on Google Sites. Though Seesaw is an amazing tool for students to use to complete hands-on, interactive activities, it's not exactly meant to be used as a "hub" for basic information. Enter Goole Sites! Life-saver!
When someone visits our Kindergarten site, they will see this homepage:
I found a stock image to use as the header, and added text in Photoshop. If you don't have Photoshop, you can simply use Google Slides or Powerpoint to make your header and other images for your site. If you scroll down, you would see our Class Newsletter (created in Google Slides) embedded right into the site. It's clickable, too! We plan on adding a second page to our newsletter that will include a specific, simple checklist for distance learning/NTI (Non-Traditional Instruction) should we go to full NTI. It will help keep parents and students organized and will help them know exactly what they need to work on for each week on their Seesaw page.
Parents (or students) will click on their respective teacher's page icon and it will take them directly to the class page. It looks like this:
Included are the following sections:
- A Google Form that asks basic back to school questions such as name, phone number, email address, how the child goes home each day (carpool, bus, etc.) - Yes! You can embed Google Forms right in there!!
- A clickable PDF of our Back to School/Welcome Packet -- Yes! You can embed the PDF right in there!
- Our class code QR for our Seesaw page
- A clickable link to a new page that will have all of the technology websites that we will use throughout the year -- and all of those links are CLICKABLE!
- A clickable link to a new page that will have all students' Seesaw logins -- and all of those links are CLICKABLE!
Google Sites is ABSOLUTELY 100% user-friendly. I wouldn't really classify myself as a "web designer", but this was so intuitive and simple to set up. There are also a ton of tutorials and even a little walk-through that it will take you through as you set up your first site.
If you have not checked out Google Sites, I highly recommend it! Parents will definitely appreciate having all of the "stuff" that comes with Kindergarten (or any grade!) right at their fingertips in ONE place.
Give it a try! I think you will surprise yourself at your ability to create your own website.
Leave a comment if you have any questions about Google Sites for me! I am happy to help with whatever I can!