Showcasing classroom successes

Geoff Millington

Geoff Millington is the founder and owner of PrimarySite Limited, the UK’s largest provider of websites to primary schools and academies. Before founding the company in 2004, Geoff was a primary school teacher himself in Nottinghamshire. He received his PGCE from University of Birmingham after graduating in Economics at Leicester.

Follow @PrimarySite

Website: Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Image credit: Harry Potter // Warner Brothers Entertainment Inc. // Originally published on 28th October 2016. Image credit: Harry Potter // Warner Brothers Entertainment Inc. // Originally published on 28th October 2016.

What is it that makes a school special? Is it the location, resources, perhaps a particular specialism? While there could be many things, most schools would say the teachers and pupils that make up the core community of the school; they are the living embodiment of a school’s ethos. So, naturally, schools will want to shout about their achievements, and the internet is a fantastic resource for spreading the word, whether this is through email distribution, a website or social media.

Getting teachers involved in updating the school’s online presence is a great way of showcasing not only the big events that happen around your school, but also the day-to-day achievements of pupils in the classroom. This can be a great motivator for children, as when they see their work being publicly celebrated, they become aware of their own abilities, raising their confidence and improving their drive towards future successes. In addition, this improves parental engagement at home, as parents will rush to see their child’s work on the website.

Getting started

While most teachers will have a level of understanding about using technology, if your website is difficult to update, it often becomes the responsibility of one"When pupils see their work being publicly celebrated, they become aware of their own abilities." or two more tech-minded staff members to handle the uploading of information. As such, the first thing you need to do when encouraging teachers to get involved is make sure the website is easy to navigate and edit, so that everyone can contribute.

Having individual class pages managed by teachers is a great way of creating an engaging information hub that presents the goals of the curriculum and the work of pupils in a truly personal way. For example, teachers could upload a description of what will be taught throughout the year, as well as how this learning journey will look. This could include details of classroom projects, associated field trips, and the expected outcomes for the pupils.

Collating this information in one place is really helpful for parents wanting to get involved with their child’s education, giving them the inside knowledge of what’s going on at school so that they can provide extra support where needed.

Most teachers will have a good grasp of using social media, and some schools will even have individual class accounts. Giving all teachers the login details for one account and allowing them to post photos of exciting work that’s happening in their classrooms is a great way of boosting morale, can really boost school-to-home engagement and ensures that all channels are constantly updated with the latest news and photos.

Getting pupils involved

There is now a heightened focus on teaching digital skills in schools, reflected in the national curriculum for Computing and the increasing amount of time being spent using technology in the classroom. Children "You could have recordings of assemblies, plays, sports events or presentations."today have been brought up surrounded by digital content, and often have a better idea of how to use technology than their parents and teachers. In helping them to develop these digital skills, why not allow them to actually create content specifically for the website? For example, you could have a blog where pupils can communicate with one another and their teachers to discuss classwork or a children’s area where teachers post the children’s journals of experiences such as class trips. After all, who better to describe their thoughts about school than the pupils themselves?

Video content is another great way of sharing material from your pupils, in a way that can’t always be captured by words and photographs. You could have recordings of assemblies, plays, sports events or presentations, which will prove very valuable to family members who can’t attend these events, but still want to get involved with their child’s education. Pupils really enjoy getting hands-on with this type of media, and will often be more engaged with the topic at hand when they know it will be recorded for their families to see at a later date. You could have the class script, present and record short news bulletins based on their learning, which develops speaking and listening skills, as well as self-confidence and creativity. You can achieve this very easily, with just a smartphone and an online platform to upload them to, so get creative and get filming!

Addressing safety concerns

Posting content from or about your pupils of course brings up the inevitable concerns about safeguarding. However, by allowing pupils to create their own digital content, you can also embed lessons on e-safety and teach children to interact with others in a safe and productive way.

Young children may not see the harm in posting information about themselves and their classmates online, so having the feature to approve any content uploaded by pupils on blogs is essential to monitor what’s being said, especially in the early stages. This means that if any safeguarding issues arise, the teacher can deal with them before anything is made public.

Getting teachers and pupils to publish their own content is a great way of displaying your school’s personality to the world, giving depth to the claims of the mission statement and providing a clear picture of the learning environment to potential parents. Not only that, it can be a fun and engaging activity for pupils, encouraging them to be proud of their work, their achievements and their school.

How do you make the most of your school’s website? Let us know below!

Register for free to continue reading
Registration is a free and easy way to support us.
When you register, you'll join a grassroots community where you can:
• Enjoy unlimited access to articles
• Get recommendations tailored to your interests
• Attend virtual events with our leading contributors
Register Now
Try Later

Latest stories

  • Free recycling-themed resources for KS1 and KS2
    Free recycling-themed resources for KS1 and KS2

    The Action Pack is back for the start of the brand new school year, just in time for Recycle Week 2021 on 20 - 26 September, to empower pupils to make the world a better and more sustainable place. The free recycling-themed resources are designed for KS1 and KS2 and cover the topics of Art, English, PSHE, Science and Maths and have been created to easily fit into day-to-day lesson planning.

  • Inspire your pupils with Emma Raducanu
    Inspire your pupils with Emma Raducanu

    Following the exceptional performance from British breakthrough star Emma Raducanu, who captured her first Grand Slam at the US Open recently, Emmamania is already inspiring pupils aged 4 - 11 to get more involved in tennis - and LTA Youth, the flagship
    programme from The LTA, the governing body of tennis in Britain, has teachers across the country covered.

  • 5 ways to boost your school's eSafety
    5 ways to boost your school's eSafety

    eSafety is a term that constantly comes up in school communities, and with good reason. Students across the world are engaging with technology in ways that have never been seen before. This article addresses 5 beginning tips to help you boost your school’s eSafety. 

  • Tackling inequality in EdTech
    Tackling inequality in EdTech

    We have all been devastated by this pandemic that has swept the world in a matter of weeks. Schools have rapidly had to change the way they operate and be available for key workers' children. The inequalities that have long existed in communities and schools are now being amplified by the virus.

  • EdTech review & The Curriculum Lab
    EdTech review & The Curriculum Lab

    The world is catching up with a truth that we’ve championed at Learning Ladders for the last 5 years - that children’s learning outcomes are greatly improved by teachers, parents and learners working in partnership. 

  • Reducing primary to secondary transition stress
    Reducing primary to secondary transition stress

    As school leaders grapple with the near impossible mission to start bringing more students into schools from 1st June, there are hundreds of thousands of Year 6 pupils thinking anxiously about their move to secondary school.

  • Generation Z and online tutoring: natural bedfellows?
    Generation Z and online tutoring: natural bedfellows?

    The K-12 online tutoring market is booming around the world, with recent research estimating it to grow by 12% per year over the next five years, a USD $60bn increase. By breaking down geographic barriers and moving beyond the limits of local teaching expertise, online tutoring platforms are an especially valuable tool for those looking to supplement their studies in the developing world, and students globally are increasingly signing up to online tuition early on in their secondary education schooling. 

  • Employable young people or human robots?
    Employable young people or human robots?

    STEM skills have been a major focus in education for over a decade and more young people are taking science, technology, engineering, and maths subjects at university than ever before, according to statistics published by UCAS. The downside of this is that the UK is now facing a soft skills crisis and the modern world will also require children to develop strong social skills as the workplaces are transformed by technology. 

  • What it’s like to be a teacher with an anxiety disorder
    What it’s like to be a teacher with an anxiety disorder

    We all feel anxious sometimes. Maybe it is going into a new situation such as starting a new job, or having to have a difficult conversation. The feeling of nervousness and anxiousness is completely normal, and an evolutionary necessity. However, for some people, like me, that feeling of anxiousness never goes away. You live with it day in, day out, and it can have quite a detrimental effect on your life and mental health.

  • How Tassomai transformed our school
    How Tassomai transformed our school

    An online learning programme called Tassomai is playing its part in the rapid transformation of Torquay Academy. Reece Broome, who is leading the project at the school, explains.

In order to make our website better for you, we use cookies!

Some firefox users may experience missing content, to fix this, click the shield in the top left and "disable tracking protection"