WHAT IS A WIDGET?
The term widget refers to any tool or content that you add, arrange or remove from the sidebar(s) or footer area(s) of your blog — these are the sections that make up your sidebar.
HOW WIDGETS ARE USED
Widgets are used for a wide range of purposes including:
- Help students, parents and visitors find information on the blog e.g. search widget, pages widget, category widget
- Track visitors to the blog. Visitor tracking widgets are used to highlight a blog’s global audience. This can be incredibly motivating for students and provides a built in geography lesson. e.g. Flag Counter, Feedjit Live Traffic Feed, ClustrMaps, Revolver Map
- Student engagement e.g. Quiz widgets, Pet widgets
- Information to help other classes learn more about your class e.g. date/time widgets, weather widget
- Latest news e.g. Twitter widget. Lots of classes now have their own class Twitter account and display their tweets using the Twitter widget
- Links to helpful resources, student blogs and other class blogs e.g. Links widget, Pinterest widget
- Help parents, caregivers and other visitors translate your blog e.g. Google Translate widget.
- Events Calendar for important dates e.g. Google Calendar
- Book lists e.g. Shelfari bookshelf and Gooodread bookshelf
- Email notification of new posts e.g. Subscribe by Email widget
- Displaying comments or posts recently posted e.g recent comments widget, recent posts widget
(HOW WIDGETS ARE USED was taken from the Edublogs Help site)
To change widgets visit Appearance > Widgets screen in your blog dashboard. More detailed instructions about adding widgets to your blog can be found here.
- Flag Counter – lists the most common countries that your visitors are from and shows the flag from each country
- Feedjit – displays visitors to your blog in real time and includes: which city and country your visitors are in; which website they arrived from, if any; which page they visited on your website; which external link they clicked to leave your site
- Revolver Map – displays all visitor locations and recent hits live and in realtime on a revolving globe of the Earth
Talking avatars are great for a wide range of purposes including grammar and fluency reading practices, delivering content and engaging auditory learners.
- Voki – add a speaking (and highly customizable) avatar to your blog. Record your voice, create a character, and much more!
- Read The Words – human avatars that will read text or recorded audio right in your blog
Images and videos are great ways of sharing visually what is happening in your classroom and class. They are also a good way of delivering content and engaging visual learners
- Image Widget – add an image with text to your sidebar
- Instagram – display your latest Instagrams on your blog
- Flickr Badges – add a link to your Flickr account
- Flickr – display your latest Flickr photos on your blog
- Facebook Photo Gallery – show off your public Facebook photo galleries right on your blog
- Gallery Widget – display a photo gallery or slideshow in your blog’s sidebar.
- YouTube – grab the embed code from any YouTube video or playlist and add it to a text widget in your sidebar. Tip – change the custom size to 200 pixels before grabbing the embed code so it fits your sidebar.
- RadioTuna – pick a genre and play music for your visitors.
Book shelf widgets are a good way to share your favourite books or provide recommended reading lists.
The two commonly used widgets for sharing books are:
- About.me – pulls your About.me profile information, and a small screenshot of it, into your sidebar.
- Blogroll – display a list of the blogs you like to read or share links to resources.
- Class blog widget – displays a link to all student blogs attached to your class blog via My Class.
- Email Subscription – adds email subscription to your sidebar so readers can subscribe to email notifications of new posts.
- Feed Wind – display the latest posts from another blog anywhere on the web.
- Google Maps – embed a Google map – complete with directions, street views, and more.
- Google Translate – instantly translate your blog into many different languages.
- Wolfram Alpha – Wolfram Alpha contains hundreds of customizable widgets from a wide range of subject areas, including unit converters, weather tools, graphing calculators, problem solvers, and much more. This might be the only resource math and science students and teachers need for their blogs!