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e-help Seminar 8
Maintaining your own website, is it worthwhile?
Toulouse 17-19 February 2005
1994: Sintermeertencollege was awarded the title “Computerschool” of the year
• 30 computers: but what to do with them?
• Computers being used as typewriters
•Full potential of the WWW not fully understood
•Students as a driving force behind changes
 The Unesco Time-project kicks off changes (1995). The Time-project included (and includes)
• Videoconferencing
• E-mail
• Chat
> After the Time-project our schoolmanagment decides to build a website (1995)

But after a while the site proved to be too static:
Most information is behind a login
Problems I have with the school’s website:
Technology: yes but:
 It is a STATIC website, limited Information only
Communication only per e-mail
 No learning environment
 No interactivity possible
 No nested websites
 No quizzes
 No forum

Build your own!

With My own History webpage I’ve been able to realize some of my teaching aims:

• I can manage other webbased projects I’ve been doing over the last couple of years: I don’t have to rely on a webmaster of some kind
• I’m able to add little tasks to the curriculum: offering extra information tot students, offering them on-line help.
• I manage a students forum. Part of it is moderated by students themselves
• The homepage keeps you up-to-date with historical or schoolevents.

One of the websites is an e-learning environment: it's a database driven website, comining local history with an attractive taylormade e-learning environment:Industrial Heritage
• It’s about local history
• Resources available to students
• Content can be managed by the teacher
• Students go step-by-step through their research
• Students put their presentations on-line
Special feature:
• The teacher logs the progress of the student

However there are problems in maintaining your own website:
 Maintaining is a 1 man job
 History Department collegues must share information and educational materials
 Schoolmanagment is not happy with this extra website
Technical: Teach yourself in using Dreamweaver/ Fireworks and Photoshop
 Computers are not always available: I’ve got to book a computerroom
– ICT-projects sometimes become homework
 History Department collegues stick to books
 Not all students are computer-literate
 Only 2 Departments write ICT materials: History and ICT

But there are solutions:
 Have a plan, a structure for what you have in mind
– Put it in your school’s curriculum (the best way to get support)
 Get backup from the managment/ board of directors
 Work in a team!
– Don’t do it on your own!
– Get involved in the ICT-plan of your school
– Good practice convinces lots of collegues
– Ask students!
 A good Content Managment System gives shared responsibilities
 Work with E-Help!

Maintaining your own website
Is it worthwhile?

 Yes,
 Because changes are inevitable!
 The future classroom could be everywhere and at any time

So maintaining your own website:
 helps students
 motivates students
 gives you the opportunity to create your own curriculum
 makes teaching up-to-date

Contribute further to the seminar at


Spartacus Learning Online MacGregor is History Historia Siglo 20 Historical Association International School History Sintermeertencollege InnovativeICT.net

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