Virtual School Meanderings

June 26, 2017

EDTECH537 – Week 1

Today begins EDTECH537 – Blogging In The Classroom. This week the students have a series of tasks to complete by the end of the week (i.e., midnight on Sunday). The main task is to decide on what blogging platform to use (i.e., Blogger, WordPress, or Edublogs) and then to create a blog. Once the students have created their blog, they should:

  • post an introductory entry
  • add some blogs to their blogroll
  • create an “about me” page

While I have most of these things already in place in my blog, I will be posting a welcome entry later today. I will also update my blogroll and the two “about” pages to ensure that they are all current (and I will post entries about this process of doing this for all three pages on Tuesday and Wednesday).

In case you are wondering, the readings for this week include:

 

11 Comments »

  1. So, Michael, since you’re doing this so publicly, and you know I like to contribute; one of the things your students should consider in selection of a platform, and how they post, is accessibility. If they’re planning on the blog being for instruction or communications with parents, there’s a legal (in the US) requirement that the site conform to WCAG 2.0 AA (another bit of research for them :-))

    Comment by onlinelearningevangelist — June 26, 2017 @ 8:36 am | Reply

    • Ray, I will make this known to them (and I’m always public about the content of this Boise State course I teach each summer).

      BTW, how does my blog stack up on this front?

      Comment by Michael Barbour — June 26, 2017 @ 11:29 am | Reply

      • I did a WAVE (from WebAim.org) review of today’s (6/30/17) posting — moved to new home this week, so I’m a little behind — and there were some 40+ major errors. But most of those come about because of the pages you’re posting from other folks. FLANZ and the U Wisconsin Distance Learning Conference materials were the biggest contributors to the 40 problem items. Those, by the way, were mostly missing ALT Tags and are the easiest to fix/avoid.

        ALT tags are the labels for graphics. A screen reader normally would read the ALT tag — if there’s nothing entered then it will just say “graphic”. ATL tags should be descriptive relative to the content, but if someone is using a graphic as “eye candy” then there is a way to make a graphic invisible to a screen reader.

        For more on ALT tags: http://accessibility.psu.edu/images/imageshtml/
        A site to use to get a quick evaluation of a website go to: http://wave.webaim.org/
        There are also browser plug-ins (I use the WAVE plugin for Chrome) that allow you to check any page you’re on.

        Comment by onlinelearningevangelist — June 30, 2017 @ 5:34 am

      • Thanks for the analysis Ray. I was a little concerned that where a lot of my content is just copied and pasted from my inbox that it wouldn’t be accessible (and the items that you highlighted fall into that category). Having said that, I have to be honest and say that will be something that doesn’t get fixed for me (as I barely have time to keep up with the blogging, let alone fixing other people’s accessibility issues).

        Comment by Michael Barbour — June 30, 2017 @ 8:58 am

      • I think your blog is personal and normally outside of your instruction, unless you require students to read it. Now for EDTECH537 that’s different as a required piece of the instruction. But, it’s hard for me to separate out what’s your basic template and the content you copy in. As I look there are only a few items that appear to be problems in your basic template.

        For your students, they should start with an accessible template. If they use graphics do the ALT tags correctly. Links correctly. Learn what makes a website accessible — also means they learn what making online course materials accessible. All digital materials in an educational setting should be accessible.

        Comment by onlinelearningevangelist — June 30, 2017 @ 11:18 am

  2. […] of the activities for Week 1 in my EDTECH537 – Blogging In The Classroom was for students to introduce themselves and talk […]

    Pingback by EDTECH537 – Introductory Entry | Virtual School Meanderings — June 26, 2017 @ 10:01 am | Reply

  3. […] one of the activities for Week 1 in my EDTECH537 – Blogging In The Classroom is for students to create an “About Me” […]

    Pingback by About Michael Barbour Page | Virtual School Meanderings — June 27, 2017 @ 7:01 am | Reply

  4. […] earlier today (see EDTECH537 – About Michael Barbour Page), another one of the activities for Week 1 in my EDTECH537 – Blogging In The Classroom is for students to create an “About Me” […]

    Pingback by EDTECH537 – About VSM Page | Virtual School Meanderings — June 27, 2017 @ 9:00 am | Reply

  5. […] earlier today (see EDTECH537 – About Michael Barbour Page), another one of the activities for Week 1 in my EDTECH537 – Blogging In The Classroom is for students to create an “About Me” […]

    Pingback by EDTECH537 – About VSM Page | Virtual School Meanderings — June 27, 2017 @ 9:00 am | Reply

  6. […] final activity for Week 1 in my EDTECH537 – Blogging In The Classroom is to create a Blogroll, so today it is time for me […]

    Pingback by EDTECH537 – Blogroll | Virtual School Meanderings — June 28, 2017 @ 7:01 am | Reply

  7. […] EDTECH537 – Week 1 […]

    Pingback by Statistics for June 2017 | Virtual School Meanderings — July 1, 2017 @ 12:01 am | Reply


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