Liberty (age 9) and I got to use Let’s Make a Web Page from Motherboard Books for the Old Schoolhouse Magazine Review Crew. I received the PDF download and Liberty and I worked through it together on the computer. Let’s Make a Web Page states that children under age 10 will need an adult alongside, and we found this info to be spot on. Liberty needed quite a bit of help, but as her computer knowledge grows, I think she’d be able to take this one all on her own fairly soon. All told, it took just a few hours, a little bit at a time, most of the time spent playing around with animations and backgrounds. We spent anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes a day, doing a few lessons each time.
It’s pretty simple. Let’s Make a Web Page assumes you know nothing and helps you build from the ground up. The user learns a bit about html and how it works, and points out how it changes as you make changes to your page. It suggests a free software download to make your page and steps you through the process. Having blogged for several years now, most of what it talked of I have already learned (the hard way!) but Liberty hadn’t. She was pretty confused for most of it and I had to help quite a bit. In the end, I expected her to be frustrated and anxious to finally finish our project, but when she saw her page online… yeah, no frustration there. In her words, “This is cool! Wow, that’s so fun.” I’m not sure if it was the process or the finished result, but she found it well worth her time and earlier frustrations.
I was a little disappointed. It seemed more like a tutorial on using CoffeeCup, the free trial download that is recommended, with just a little extra instruction thrown in there. We learned valuable information, but I’d rather hoped to learn a bit more about writing our own HTML instead of just how to make a webpage with a program that writes it for you. It explained HTML well in easy terms and made a point of mentioning and telling how changes are made when text is edited. It did spark Liberty’s creativity and her desire to see her own work online. I see a blog of her own on the horizon to get her started.
We published Liberty’s web page she made with Let’s Make a Web Page here, or you can click on the “Liberty’s Interview” page in the bar at the top of the page. Her interview and the page she wrote based on it, was pretty interesting. I don’t know if she’ll be a webpage designer, but she has writing skills at any rate! She picked her questions, wrote down my answers, and typed up the whole page herself. She also has apparently gained my love for all things simple. Given the option of animations and fun backgrounds, she went for plain. Girl after my own heart.
Let’s Make a Web Page is a PDF download that can be purchased here for $19.95. It contains 10 lessons that step you through the process, and an appendix that helps with information you might need.
To read what other members of the Review Crew thought about Motherboard Books and their products Logo Adventures and Let’s Make a Web Page, check out the TOS Review Crew Blog.