WordPress‎ > ‎

Create a teacher site using WordPress in just five steps

Originally posted by Ryan McCallum

Intro: Why should you have a class website?

I blogged yesterday on 10 reasons why every teacher should want a web page. If these reasons aren't enough, please view the six slides below for some examples, ideas, and cautions about your new class portal.
If you're ready to get started, and WordPress is your weapon of choice, this tutorial will take you through how to turn a normal WordPress site into a complete class portal in just five steps. The video tutorials featured below are less than 20 minutes in total. This tutorial assumes that you already have an account on WordPress.com, Edublogs, WordPress MU, or other WordPress instillation. I also assume that you are able to log in and access your dashboard. Please note that WordPress offers hundreds of options to customize and extend your site, but none of these are covered by this tutorial. This is just the basics of creating a fully-functional and easy-to-update teacher homepage. Stay tuned to this site for more advanced tutorials on extending your site.

Step 1: Fine-tune your settings

Go to Settings and then general to make sure your general settings are to your liking. Pick your correct time zone and give your blog a good name and subtitle. You can also decide how people can or if they can't register for your site. Go to the "Discussion" option under settings and decide how or if you want people to be able to leave comments on your posts and pages. You can always decide on this on a per-post basis (only allowing comments and feedback on posts you specify), but you can fine tune the settings here for your entire site.

Please view in full screen to see more details.

Step 2: Pick your theme

WordPress offers hundreds of theme options. Each of them have their own set of options, graphics, layouts, and appearances. Some of them make it easier to make a page that fits your style. Other themes offer too many options for what you want to accomplish with your site. Feel free to experiment with your themes. You can move back and forth between them easily. To set your theme, go to the Appearance settings and then pick "Themes". You can then browse themes or add a new one. Be sure to Activate the theme you're previewing for it to take effect on your site.

Please view in full screen for more detail

Step 3: Set up categories

Set up your categories.

If you teach multiple subjects or preps in a day, or if you just want to have different places to set up different types of communication, you should start out by making as many categories as you think you'll need. You can always add more categories later.

Please view in full screen to see more detail

Step 4: The Welcome Page

Create your welcome or home page by making a new page. Give it a title and add your message. As with anything on WordPress, this an always be changed or added to later. After you write your welcome page, set it as your home page. Click on Settings, then Reading. Then select that you want your home page to be a Static page and select your new home page to be on the front.

View this in full screen for more detail

Step 5: Write a post

Posts are where you can chronicle the day-to-day activities of your classes, make announcements, or include pictures, links, downloads, or discussion prompts. Create a new post by selecting "Posts" and then "Add New Post". Give your post a title and fill in the message body just as you would an email. Before you post, select the category or categories you want your post to appear under. Your categories on your home page won't appear until they have a post filed under them.

Enhancing your posts: Adding pictures, attachments, and other files

You can add pictures or links to files and other attachments right from the New Post and New Page screen. You can either add a file from your computer or link to an existing file on the internet. When linking to other files be aware of two things; make sure you give credit to the original creator if they let you use it, and be aware that hotlinked images can change or disappear entirely whereas you have control over the images and files you upload to your site. To begin with, make sure you have access and permission to post this content on your site.

Please view in full screen to see more detail

Adding links to other sites

Embedding videos and other content

Stay tuned to this space for advanced tutorials on WordPress and how to set up other platforms as a teacher web site.