Google Sites for Virtual Learning Part 2 (Parent Portal)

Welcome back to part 2 of this explanation of how I set up my Google Site.  Today, I will walk you through the Parent Portal and a few of the other pages on the site.  If you missed how I set that all up, you can go back here to part 1 to read it first.

If you recall, I have the Google Site set up into two sections:  A Student Portal and a Parent Portal.   The student portal includes information specifically for the kids.  Things they will need to be successful.  The Parent Portal does the opposite.   It is designed to be a place where the parents find information they need in order to feel informed and up-to-date about our classroom.  

Parent Portal


Once the parents click in to the portal, they will see some top links to important outside sites.  There is an email button, one for our district parent page, and one directly to the gradebook on Schoology for their child.   All of those buttons were made using the "Button" icon on the Layout menu.  I simply linked them to the proper webpage and moved them to the top of the Parent Portal.

Using a Google Site is a good way to keep parents up to date

The next area the parents will see is a "Meet the Teacher" section.  Here, I recorded a short video introducing myself.  It is nothing special, just me talking and a few pictures of my family, but it makes me a real person for the families.  Since we won't be able to meet in person now due to the Distance Learning method of instruction, I felt it was important for me to show my parents who I am in a real, physical form.  

I then inserted a Contact Form right away.  I want to collect information (such as emails and phone numbers) but also gather a bit of information about the students themselves.  This form allows the parents to give me a little insight into the kids who will be in my Distance Learning room.  You can grab a copy of it to edit yourself if you would like.

Gathering information with a Student Info Form

After that, I have the bulk of the information set up for the parents. Broken up into 4 main sections, the parents will learn of:  expectation of 3rd grade, curriculum in 3rd grade, how we will communicate, and what supplies the kids should probably have in order to be successful.  On Google Slides, all of the information is housed. I embedded it on the site using the Drive symbol in Layout.  

Google slides are easy to embed into a Google Slte

The slides are chock full of the information the parents will need.  When they click on the slides, they will enlarge and allow the parents to read all about our class.  The first slides share the expectations I have of the students in my classroom.  What will our daily schedule look like?  How will they function on Zoom?  Where will they get their assignments?  All of the burning questions parents have will be answered here.


Then, they will learn all about the curriculum that the kids will learn this year.  With the uncertainty of Distance Learning the last time around, I felt it important to share with the parents just what we will learn throughout the year.  All of the books and curriculum we will be learning from will also be listed here.

Then, there is a space all about how we will communicate with each other.  Using email and Weekly Reports, we will stay in touch on the regular.  That will be the backbone our year.  Communication is going to be KEY and I wanted to set that up for the parents.  

Finally, I shared the important supplies I felt the students would need.  Normally, these are things I would supply for the kids...but, again, these aren't normal times.  So I am asking parents to have these things on hand.  I also put a link to my Amazon wish list here.  On this list, I asked for these same things with a note telling the parents that, if they can, I would appreciate donations of school supplies for those students in our class who are unable to get their hands on them.  I will be able to distribute them that way.


Since the information is on Google Slides, and I can edit it right there, if I change something or update information that is important for the parents, it will automatically update on my site.  It is just so easy to do on Google!  

If you would like the templates (and all of the wording) I used, you can get them here.  They are ready to go on Google for you.  

Finally, I included links to several websites where parents can go to help their children improve on various skills.  I figured since they are always asking, I would include easy to use sites for the parents.

OK...once again, I have talked A LOT here.  So I will leave you here for now.  Come back for Part 3 where I explain my Amazing Work section and our Classroom Library.

43 comments

  1. Thank you so much for sharing this. I have a class website on Weebly that has been sorely neglected since school closed. It might be time to switch things up.
    Jan
    Laughter and Consistency

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    1. Oh! Let me now how it goes. I hear Weebly is very similar to Google Sites!

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  2. I can't wait for the class library and amazing work sections! This is ABSOLUTELY wonderful!! You've been a great inspiration to work on a meaningful classroom website. One question- I saw where you create your headers in Power point using a website for photos but how do you know the correct size to make them? That's where I am struggling. Thanks so much!!

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    1. I just made those standard 4:3 on Power Point (one of the options....not custom) Nothing too fancy.

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  3. When you publish your website where do you share your link, Google Classroom? Also, is there a way to shorten your URL to make it more friendly and easy to remember? Your work is amazing, thanks for sharing!

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    1. Thank you :)

      I will send an email to the parents and student (and in Zoom during our first few weeks of meeting.) It will also be included in our Weekly Report each week. You can shorten it, yes. There is a link shortener.

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  4. Love the site and all your ideas. Great motivation! How much time have you spent? Ball park?

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    1. I spent A LOT of time figuring out what direction I wanted to go in. Once I did that, it didn't take long, per say, but I got lost in it. So I just kept going and revising and making it work better for me.

      That was a long way to say it did that a long time. Hours and hours.

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  5. I love everything you included in your website. I created mine a few weeks ago and I'm still learning new tricks from others like you. This is very addictive and a lot of fun. I can't wait to see what you share in part 3.

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  6. How did you put the numbers next to expectations and curriculum?

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    1. Those are just emojis :) On a Mac, press command + control + space bar (there is also a chrome extension or use emojicopy.com)

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  7. I was wondering. I'm sure you have seen the "smart classroom" that people make in Google slides to work as an app on a phone. I'm thinking this is a better solution, distance learning or not(I won't be). Are they two different things or basically one in the same?

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    1. Do you mean the clickable one? Like with Bitmojis and stuff? I am not sure how different or the same it is, as I haven't made one myself.

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    2. Yes, that's the one. I think I can add a whole lot more having a site. The Smart Classroom is set up in Google slides. I'm now thinking this way is also lots less work. Wonderful idea for Meet the Teacher. I've already sent this page to someone else.

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  8. Hello there! I am following your blog religiously as I work to create my own. Would you possibly be able to share the parent resources you linked for them to access for additional practice?

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  9. Amazing! Just amazing. Thanks to you I started working on my site last night. Love the items you put in TPT. Hopefully I can get myself together before school starts! Thank you.!

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  10. Hi! How do I link my email to the parent portal side of my website?

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    1. I just put my email address into the the button link and it generated a mailto: and a mail box comes up.

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    2. Where it asks for the link, you should be able to just type in your email and it will automatically create a link to their email with your email already in typed in.

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  11. This is SO incredibly helpful! I am feeling so overwhelmed by all the things that we need to do, and this is definitely making it feel like I can get through it all!

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  12. Love all you have done! With this transition to online learning this has given me some control and I appreciate it so much! I can't wait for the next part. I am building as you upload so I am so excited :)

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  13. Thank you for such amazing work. Will you possibly be making your site a copy template we could purchase on TPT?

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  14. What font did you use for your header for the "Student Information Form"?

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    1. It is called Venti Life from A Primary Kind of Life.

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  15. I can't get the links to work for your Forms or Parent Template. I am sure that is due to the shear amount of traffic you have on this site. Your ideas are amazing! Thank you for sharing.

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  16. Has Part 3 been posted yet? I am loving all your ideas :)

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    1. I have not written it yet ;) I will let you know when I do.

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  17. Thank you for sharing your process with us. It has been a great tool as I build my site. This is a silly question, but when you made your email button what do you have it linked to? Thanks for all that you are sharing!

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    1. I just typed in my school email address and it automatically generated a mailto: and makes an email box pop up on my computer.

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  18. Hi! You are amazing! I'm a veteran teacher and I am starting my own site, thanks to you! I have been slowly trying to follow your steps and I was able to go through part 1 on site directions, but for some reason my computer is not allowing me to access your youtube video or get the templates for your parent portal forms. Is there a way you could email me the youtube link and email the templates? Maybe I am doing something wrong with the privacy settings?

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    1. I reworked the permissions the Student Info Form so it should download into your drive now. Make sure you are signed on to your school email account.

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  19. Love this resource! What did you search to find the image of the white brick wall and light bulbs in the background of your header?

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    1. I searched "white brick office" or something like that on Deposit Photos

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  20. Hello! Thank you so much for sharing your experience with developing google sites! It has been sol helpful! I was wondering where you found the images you placed on your slide presentation? They are so cute and I love the style!

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  21. Thank you so much for the wealth of information on Google sites!! It has been so helpful in creating my own site for the year.

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  22. Thank you so much for this! I've been checking back daily for your part 3! When will that be available?

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  23. Thank you so much for all of this! It is truly spectacular. Can you share some of the links that you created a button for at the bottom of the parent page to help their students skills?

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  24. Thank you for the work you have put into this! I am teaching a hybrid class this year (part in the classroom part at home) and I really want to use this! One questions, how do you make the daily reports available so only one parent/child can see it?

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  25. Could you please send me a copy of the Student information form? Each time I try to download it, it goes to my personal email. I can't even send it to my school email, Thank you so much! All the other things I am not having a problem with.

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