Web 2.0 and Technology Education

I’ve been asked to take on our high school Web Design class next school year and I’m trying devise a class that addresses the changing nature of the web.  In the past it has focused on learning Dreamweaver, CSS, and html.   The class was also tasked with maintaining the school web site.

In short, I am trying to envision the Web 2.0 version of this class.  I want to move away from teaching traditional applications and code.   I have visions of digital media literacy, blogging about technology tools, and finding web applications that fit practical personal and education needs.

Can you help?  If you have any ideas, I would love to hear them – either in a comment or an e-mail (danmcdowell at gmail dot com).

I intend to use an open source CMS (Drupal or Joomla) for the backbone of the school web site, so that portion of the class won’t be as dominating.  I will have around 30 students with varying degrees of technology background.  We will be using Macs.



7 thoughts on “Web 2.0 and Technology Education”

  1. I took a web design course in high school (about…6 years ago) and all we did cover was Dreamweaver and basic HTML. I remember being disappointed, because those things I could have (and already had) figured out on my own. I’m glad you are choosing to go with a more dynamic curriculum. I don’t have any other suggestions, but good luck with the course.


  2. I have had great experiences with blogging in my English classes. At first most of the students did not know how to blog but once they got the hang of it the responses/post became interesting. I believe that as students blog their responses/post become more insightful. The students know that since they are publicly posting their responses other students are going to read their post. I know this may not sound too nice, but especially with high school students, they do not want to make a bad impression on their peers. After awhile many of the students actually started to become enthusiastic about blogging. Many students would ask about their next topic ahead of time or even suggest topics that they would like to write about. As the year went on students started to comment on each others blogs, brought each other’s responses up in conversation during class, and some even started blogging on their own. I think the same would go for history classes. I would also think that blogging would help the students to practice voicing their opinions and learn how to logically debate amongst their peers.


  3. I just attended a workshop with Will Richardson yesterday. He told us that his school website was built entirely out of blogs that were linked to each other. I was trying to envision how that works. Very interesting concept. Beware of Joomla. It is not an easy thing to learn. If you use it, make sure you have a guru somewhere you can ask for help. The district I work with decided to use Joomla for all school websites without having someone in place who could help when needed. It has been a very difficult year.


  4. Hi there… I couldn’t disagree more with Dottie about Joomla. I find it really easy to use (it is the center of my classroom site and I also blog on Joomla on a political blog I contribute to). For a school website, I am not sure if you are going to find a more powerful tool. True, WordPress is easier to use, but I think you can’t go wrong with Joomla.


  5. I agree WordPress might be the answer to your classroom needs. I used Jot Spot, like Joomla, last year with some of my media classes. This product was bought by google thus I am not sure when it will resurface.


  6. I’m teaching a course this spring on Web 2.0 technologies that can help teachers. Our district subscribes to SchoolWires, so we won’t be building the entire website, but finding resources to help teachers and also expand their web presence.

    Some thoughts:
    * Using forums for student discussions. I modified an SMF forum so that students can create complex math symbols in their discussions if needed.
    * RSS – have teachers post HW assignments in an RSS feed, and show students (and parents) how to subcribe
    * Find podcasts/vidcasts on various subjects
    * Use social bookmarking to catalog sites you like for your students as you find them. Then kids can go to del.icio.us/MrSmith/Math2 and see all the links you think Math 2 students would benefit from.

    If you’re interested in bouncing more ideas off each other let me know.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s