I have worked with many versions of student efolio creation over the years. The past three years we have used the original version of Google Sites. “Google Sites is an acquired taste” coined from Kasey Bell. I couldn’t agree more. By the time you realize that you invested MANY hours, you are determined to see it to the end.
I created my first site with the new format on a personal level. It was a lake association site, used for basic information. I wanted it to be clean, simple and user friendly. That was easy to do and I was very impressed with the finished product. Especially the ability to share edit rights.
Today I introduce that user friendly building tool to my 6th graders. We were creating their middle school efolio to model and share their learning. Many students had long moans as I said we were using Google Sites. “Google Sites are so hard to work with”, stated one little girl. The tone didn’t change when I said there was a NEW Google Sites.
As I modeled the excitement built across the room. There were many comments of how cool it was and the ease of creating each subject page. There was a buzz as table groups shared what they were creating with each other. They found the tool panel so user friendly and virtually no student push back. I tried to model all of the drop down tools, with all working perfectly.
The only downer is that early in the school year I had one 6th grade team create their efolios with the old sites. Even though most had built pages with Google Sites in elementary, the middle school process still wasn’t smooth. The traditional frustration of changing the layout for tabs and then adding pages to the tabs is always challenging. We will get them moved over soon.
I highly recommend using the New Google Sites for student efolios. I have used very few tech tools that worked perfect the first time, but today was awesome. Each group left the room asking, “Do we get to work on our sites next time?”. How often does that happen, if ever with the old sites. I’m excited to move my teacher page to the new sites. Way to go Google!