Sylmar PD

Google Sites: SEO'd, Simple, Slick

In this PD session, I want to advocate for the implementation of Google Sites into your professional toolset. I have my students create their own Google Site as a comprehensive final project to showcase their newly acquired technical skills and Chemistry content knowledge, but I also believe that every teacher should have also have their own Google Site.

Why should you care?

Your students and parents are already looking you up on Google. Are proud of what they will see?

Google Sites are Search Engine Optimized

LAUSD can't afford to SEO your name, but Google Sites will do it for free!

Put yourself in your students' shoes. They will be looking you up, guaranteed. Imagine you were a disgruntled parent who wanted an explanation for a low grade. They will also be looking you up. What shows up when you Google your name? What happens when you Google your name with your school?

Search Engine Optimization puts your desired results of those searches at the top of Google's query. SEO is HUGE business. In 2020, businesses spent $80B trying to get their name at the top of those lists. Thankfully, Google Sites natively indexes much higher than many other site options, which means that your students will get to your content faster and more painlessly.

Google Sites are slick and responsive

Modern websites are designed with the end-user in mind. For a majority of users, including your students and parents, this means more eye catching visual content and less distracting or confusing text.

A majority of web traffic now occurs on smaller screens, such as smart phones and tablets. This means that modern sites should be responsive and change the arrangement of the content to fit the screen.

Consider the differences between our old Sylmar HS site and our brand-new Sylmar HS site;

Our beloved old site, while full of lots of helpful information, is tricky to navigate on smaller screens. Lots of text can be confusing and daunting for new users.

The new Sylmar site emphasizes more visual content. Fewer buttons make for an easier navigating experience when the content is shrunk down onto mobile devices.

Google Sites is built around a responsive and modern user experience. With Google Sites, you don't have to pay the bucko bucks that LAUSD shells out for that fresh new look.

Google Sites are simple to create

The new Google Sites interface is super easy to use. Just go to the link above, and you should see the interface shown. Start your first site by clicking any of the templates

After you select a template, you'll be given a page design sidebar, where you can choose to add various content templates. Once you add those layouts to your page (like the one below), you just click boxes and edit as necessary.

Some sample websites from some of our very own Sylmar Spartans

@ Esther Hirschman

@ Christian Mendoza

@ Veronica Gomez-Gomez

Brian Teaches Site

Class Site

Club/Team Site

Personal Site

My own portfolio of various Google Sites keeps my digital-life organized and curated, so that I'm proud of the professional and personal image that people see. That's why I use Google Sites.