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Showcasing Scott Mooney and his "Web Domain"

Viewing himself more as a facilitator than a lecturer, technology education teacher Scott Mooney provides his students with information, gives them directions, and lets them explore.

"My Web site, Mr. Mooney's Web Domain, allows me to provide all those things on a permanent basis for all of my students, as well as for people from around the world," he told Education World. "I thought preparing my site would be the best way to disseminate my content, and that feeling of permanence is important to me and to my students."

Because Mooney's students have constant access to the content of his courses, he never wastes time dealing with questions about when assignments are due or what happened in class the day before. The parents of students at Eleanor Roosevelt High School in Greenbelt, Maryland, use the site to stay apprised of classroom activities. The site also shares Mooney's classroom rules, procedures, and more. One of the site's best features is a set of tutorials he uses in class to teach his students about the software they use in their course work.

"Response has been extremely positive," Mooney reported. "I teach my students that it is extremely important to understand your audience. My audience is 99 percent students sitting in my classroom, so my site is designed to work for the students using my computers -- any other use is supplementary."

With proper citation, Mooney invites teachers to borrow the work he shares on his site. He finds special interest in his Macromedia tutorials, an area he regularly revises to keep up with new versions of the software. His comprehensive Web design class covers everything from the development of the Internet to the design of a Web page.

"I advise other Webmasters to start small and add something every day," said Mooney. "I have been working on my site for years, and it still is not even close to what I want it to be. We are teachers, not Web designers. There is no reason to think you have to have a 600-page site this year. Start with the basics. Post your assignments, useful notes, and resources, and go from there. Eventually, you'll have a great, comprehensive site that draws your students in."

For Mooney, key to making the site effective is requiring students to use it. His site is a resource that students must rely on to obtain assignments, and so on. "People will only visit if they must!" he noted.

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Article by Cara Bafile
Education World®
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