About this site
I created my first course website, www.martinsclass.com, in November 2008 during my first year of teaching as a way to encourage students to stay on top of course material, and to make my teaching more transparent. In the 2009-2010 year, I split my website into separate branches, AP Human Geography and Modern World History. I also built the site using wordpress, which enables students to have an account, giving them the ability to create and publish blog posts and static web pages themselves. At the end of the 2009-2010, the www.martinsclass.com domain got filtered by my school district’s content filter (I suspect it has to do with specific terms related to population pyramids and population growth statistics – which unfortunately will not make it to this site to keep it clean and visible).
Thus in this 2010-2011 school year I started two new domains, www.martinsaphug.com & www.martinsmwh.com that will be visible to students in school labs since I use this site weekly as a part of classroom instruction. Most of the information from the old website has been transferred, and some new info added.
My motivation in creating this website is due to the fact that AP HUG students face a daunting amount of content to master; I would rather they spend less time acquiring the information and more time learning and analyzing course content. Hopefully this site will facilitate these processes.
Why google ads? As you probably know, websites require a hosting account and domain renewals. This site costs me over $100 per year. When I was actively teaching, I considered that an acceptable cost to provide this site for my students. However, as I’ve transitioned out of the classroom, I wanted to keep the site up, and would like to make it self-sustaining financially. Traffic to this site has constantly increased. As of 12/2012, this site gets approximately 500 unique visit per day from all over the world. Most visitors are here to use the map, vocabulary, or powerpoint resources. I plan on adding additional content in the coming year in the hopes that it will attract even more traffic, which will generate revenue and continue to provide these resources for teachers.
How to use this site:
This site is organized into a blog and a back-end full of static webpages. These webpages can be seen by searching in the search bar or by clicking on a tag (see the floating ball of words in the right sidebar). There are many webpages that students have created and tagged with relevant terms. When you click on the tag you will see any pages and posts that relate to that concept.
A note to other AP HUG teachers:
In recent months I’ve noticed that this site is getting more and more hits from all over, and has become referenced on several sites. Please keep in mind that my site is very much an agglomeration of everything I have come across over the past year (going on 2). I am a scavenger and pirate by nature, and am known to borrow, adapt, and utilize any ideas and resources to implement in my teaching for the benefit of my students. I am a firm believer in borrowing ideas that work, and am happy to help share these ideas with other teachers. In fact, you might notice that I’m already using ideas/worksheets/elements from other teachers. I try to give credit where I can, but I’m slightly preoccupied with teaching AP HUG. For a list of other teachers’ websites – see teacher links.
These instructions are primarily for students to help them make websites and add related meta-tags.
How to add a link: You can create hyperlinks in your page by selecting the text or object that you want to be “linked”. When you highlight the text, you will see the little chain icon pop up in your editor menu. Click on that and copy and past the html url, or full web address into the form. Be sure to test your link to make sure that it works.
How to add images: To add an image to your page, you first need to download your image to your computer; somewhere easy to remember like your desktop. Then you just need to click the box right next to Upload/Insert in the post/page editor. You will then get a pop up menu where you will select the image from the computer. You can adjust the placement/size using that menu.
Posts vs. Pages – This site consists of posts and pages. The posts are dated blog posts. They move in order and gradually get indexed in the archives.
Pages are static pages that can be found by searching the tabs on the top of the site, or by clicking on specific tags, that will show you a list of all related pages and posts.
Meta-tags – each post and page are tagged with keywords. These keywords may be general terms that relate to the post, or specific terms that are included on the page. The main idea behind these terms is that if someone clicks on that tag, you page will show up. You should meta-tag your page with any and all key terms that apply to make the class database easier to search.