Since upgrading to Edublogs Pro, I’ve actually done a lot of the suggestions in the Edublogs Teacher challenge kickstart activity #7. I had a bit of fun playing with the additional themes and widgets. That said, there are free ones out there too like my ClustrMap which I added after starting this challenge. It’s interesting – and heartwarming – to see the increased traffic into my blog from many parts around the globe (Here’s my shout out – thanks everyone).
I like the 3-column view which gives me a lot of options on what to include. While I do have Google Reader for blogs I follow, I have included a couple of blog rolls as my way of recommending sites I like. I absolutely love the Tag cloud as a way of navigating to previous posts – especially Lesson Ideas. An ex-colleague (@plu) recommended having a Follow Me on Twitter widget and though I’m uncertain how effective it is, I like it. I also like having the Meta widget for easy access to administering my blog.
Although I have a few more widgets on my blog, the ones in bold above are my favourites.
As an extension activity, I created this badge. I think badges are more popular in craft blogs and mine has a few. I checked out the html code of one of them from CASE Study and figured I can do this. Here’s how I did it:
- Create a badge. I don’t have Photoshop (yet) in my new mac so I did this using WordArt in PowerPoint (I kid you not!). I changed the text background to one of my underwater photos and saved the whole thing as a GIF. It took me 15 minutes. You’re probably thinking I should spend more time on it! 🙂
- Upload the badge to the media library to get its URL.
- Create a text/html widget. I positioned mine high up so it’s immediately visible.
- Write up a bit of html to show the image and optionally have a hyperlink.
- I don’t actually know how the CASE study blog managed to show the html code as text (mine just gets interpreted). SO, I created a page which is hyperlinked to the “Grab this for free” invitation. I pasted the paste in the Visual mode (not HTML) so the html code is treated as plain text. It ties up nicely with one of the challenge activities of creating a page, don’t you think?
Cheers everyone and I hope you got something out of this post especially f it’s a challenge to create a better badge than mine. If you do, please leave a crumb trail so I can see what you’ve done.
UPDATE: Thanks to @mimbles, I now know the html tag needed so html code is treated as text – it’s textarea, funny that. More details in the badge page.