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WoodPecker

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What's the best way for a novice to go about designing a web site, it's for a primary school where the bra... I mean pupils have to have an input.
 

wizer

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do you have any html experience at all?
 

superunknown

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There are websites that you can use to build your own site, edit and host it. Very easy and quick. For example http://www.zyweb.com/ Have a google about I'm sure there are lots.

::Edit ...This looks quite useful :) > http://www.ewelive.com/index.php ...Edit::

Also you could try a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) programme to help you build it. That is very straight forward too, there are a lot if these types of editing progs, Front Page, Dreamweaver, Coffeecup etc... They vary in the way they are used and some are harder to get going with and require time and some basic leaning.

I would spend some time and learn some basic HTML if you don't know any, just for a good understanding of how things work.

And finally, after some learning of HTML you could put it in to practice with Notepad the great little prog everybody has on there pc already. :)
 

Les Mahon

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Evrsoft have a free WYSIWIG designer alled 1st page, I use it a fair bit and it is not bad at all. Evrsoft

The only definitive advice I would give is steer clear of Frontpage, it has a tendancy to produce "Microsoft" webpages specifically for Internet explorer browsers.

Also you should get some backround info, either by gettting books as already sugested, or by reading the wealt of information freely provided on the web! try here for starters.

I have no association with either of the sites, I use Evrsoft on a daily basis to mock up screens for web based applications in work, the other one I found by searching and it looks ok as far as I can see

Les
 

WoodPecker

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Wizer,
I did some HTML about 8 years ago, it was straight forward enough at the time but I haven't gone near it since and wouldn't know where to start. :oops: Where would I start?

My wife is a teacher and can just about log on to her Gmail without asking me 1M questions, none of the other teachers are much better. So something straight forward would be good if I'm ever to get some peace.

Roger,
A free web hosting service is going to be made available for primary schools so the edit and host sites won't do. I'll get the book and have a look at some of the WYSIWYG packages.

Thanks
 

wizer

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I would find a good book and then think about a CMS. CMS stands for Content Management System. They are reasonably easy to setup and once setup will make it easy peasy for teachers to add content themselves.

Examples of CMS sofware (all free, even for comercial use):

Mambo
Post Nuke
Xoops

It's a learning curb to set them up, but once running will make your whole website look professional and simple to use. You can easily add things like shopping systems, news article generators, forums, user management and a whole lot more.

I have just set up something similar on my website for blogging using something called wordpress.
 

wizer

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PS my HTML experience is also about 8yrs old and very rusty.. But you pick it up again quite quickly.
 

matt

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What's the purpose of the site and the intended audience? For example, is it just a project/plaything for the students or is it supposed to act as a prospectus too?

The reason I ask is that you may need to give serious consideration to accessability. If, for example, it was a prospectus then you need to ensure that it is accessible to everyone (e.g blind people). Not only is this area coming under increasing scrutiny it is also a sensible thing to do.

However... don't be put off. Making a site accessible is not difficult. It just pays to think about it before you start to build the site and plan for it. Designing with Web Standards by Jeff Zeldman is a good book on the subject. His approach is to teach standards compliance which automatically includes accessability. He'll also encourage you to use XHTML (using CSS to control layout).

My advice is to read a really good book on the subject, one that describes how to build a site properly. Then, take your time and build a single template page that passes all the tests over at the W3C's site.

If, on the other hand, it is an experimental project for the students, then take the less serious approach and learn and develop as you go along.

Final thoughts... Familiarise yourself with subjects such as PHP (a dead simple scripting language that can, for example, be used to handle contact forms). PHP can also be used to save a lot of time by enabling you to create a single version of, for example, your navigation and then drop it in to all of your pages. The beauty of this is that you only have to update the navigation in once place if you add new pages etc. Server Side Includes (SSI) would do a similar job too.

I guess what I am saying is that what you learnt 8 years ago will stand you in good stead; however, a hell of a lot has happened since then so it is worth exploring a bit before starting any design work - you'll be glad that you did.
 

devonwoody

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WoodPecker":iou8z8xs said:
What's the best way for a novice to go about designing a web site, it's for a primary school where the bra... I mean pupils have to have an input.
Ask the bra..... the pupils, they will certainly be able to tell you. My grandson taught me how to use a puter.
 
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