I know that loving weebly might make me seem like I’m living in the past (cos peeps have been using weebly for years now – HT to the weebly guru @missjessm), but it’s only been this year that I have seen the true potential for weebly and PBL. Hmmm… that might be a lie because in 2011 my year 11 students used weebly to create their individual websites and in year 12 they used it to create their collaborative website as part of their PBL. OK, so maybe I’m not a new convert BUT I have been re-inspired to use this tool with more classes because of the way Lee has used it with his year 2 project. His class weebly is AMAZING – it is a place where his students share their learning for the online community and where they communicate with each other about their learning after school hours. Yep, you read that right! Year 2 students (all who are ESL), communicating with each other AFTER SCHOOL HOURS about their project. It’s the cutest thing to read!! I love how Lee has used images and videos to complement the written text and that he has written in a way that is engaging and accessible for his students. You can check out their super cute weebly here: http://mepsmarkets.weebly.com
Whilst I’m not planning on using a weebly in the way Lee has (not yet anyway, cos I have seven classes and that’s A LOT of website management), I have been really happy with it as a platform for students’ final products. This year, just like in 2011, my year 11 English Extension students were set the project of studying a pre-20th century text and its appropriation, then composing their own appropriation. This year we called the project ‘UpCycling’ – I thought that was super clever, lol. The idea is that they share all of their responding and composing for the project on their own weebly – and once again my students have floored me with their awesomeness! Seriously, I love this task because it gives my students the freedom to pursue a text they have personal connections with, that they feel passionately about and which they want to honour through their work. Below are the links to my students’ websites and they are, no word of a lie, brilliant!
Beauty and the Beast: http://forbiddenwestwing.weebly.com/
The Legend of Sleep Hollow: http://rollingheads.weebly.com/
Hansel and Gretel: http://whatsinsidethegingerbreadhouse.weebly.com/
I’m going to be using weebly a few more times with my students this year – year 10 will be posting their fanfics to our DavoWrites weebly, year 8 will be posting their critical and creative pieces inspired by Tim Burton on a weebly and year 9 documentaries will be shared on a weebly as well. Oh, and maybe I’ll make one for year 12 for belonging – in fact, we’ll make it together. Yes, I’m a bit obsessed, but once you give your students a go, they’ll also see just how easy it is to make something beautiful that they can share with an online audience. Remember to encourage your students to share the link via email and social media so they get some hits on their site – my son loves that! He’s only 9 and he’s made five weebly sites, haha – the cutest one is this a record of our family history. Good luck – and don’t forget to share with me the cool stuff your students do!!