My English teacher has an ongoing project deriving from the idea of finding a need and fulfilling it. One might ask the question, “What if this could happen?” and what you do is make it happen. Thus, our project is called the What if? Innovation project where we, as students, create something to try to leave our own mark.
Sounds like a grand project and many students are taking a big step. For me, I decided why not music? How often do we find a song we like and become so eager to let people know about. I created a Music Share website for Fountain Valley High School and the students there. Large scale music share websites already exist, so why not one just for my own high school?
And so, how do I create this website? Well, there are quite a few options online. My teacher recommended to me Padlet, however I found it difficult to add links to it. A great visual representation, but it was not working well with what I had in mind. How do people add on to it and how do I regulate those additions and edits. Instead, how about submissions? I was inspired by the FVHS Confessions page that started last year. It was a Facebook page created by a couple students where confessions were submitted and posted on the Facebook page. However, instead of a Facebook page, I created a Tumblr. I was already a bit familiar with Tumblr due to constant use of it for my own personal blog. It has an option to submit, and even better, submit videos.
Therefore, a Tumblr was created and the theme shopping began. Someone running a blog might be able to understand the struggles of theme shopping. On WordPress, it is already difficult but Tumblr is on a whole different level. The variety of themes for Tumblr is endless, but you are never able to find that one perfect theme. There will always be tweaks, playing with colors, and HTML. Sadly, I have a very minimal amount of knowledge regarding web design. But I have found Tumblr to generally be somewhat user friendly in a sense that most themes will probably have a majority of what you are looking for. Thank you theme creators for allowing them to be free. Several websites are available that categorize themes and help you find one to your liking. I used Atlas Designs to help me out. Google can also help you find some odd tweak in the HTML or Customization to add in that one endless scroll or extra page. And so, I was able to turn this….
into something more like this…
I changed the colors into our school colors, added some posts, included a SCM Music Player, and added more pages such as the ever so important “Submit” page. In the submit page, I even added him options for tagging the post whatever genre they wished.
As of now I sit, staring at the bright lights of the computer screen, the image of the navy blue background being imprinted on my eyes. I sit and I stare. I stare and I sit as the time passes by and I wait…and wait…and wait… for a change of color. Soon enough, a small square, red like a Ruby, appears in front of me. Carefully digitized on that square is the perfect number 1. So perfect as if carefully painted on with a paint brush and a freshly opened bottle of white paint.
Someone has finally submitted! I’ve been having issues trying to get people to find this website. It’s not as easy as a worldwide spamming of posting on every social media site possible. I want this website to be able to be for FVHS students. I even password protected it but found that it would be more complicated than what the average teenager is willing to go through to access a website. However, when people do submit, I post it on the website. If inappropriate, I go off to find a “clean” version and post it.
As of right now, I plan to possibly change the entire format of the website completely. A possibility is taking on the FVHS confessions format by posting submission on a Facebook page. I find that it is able to find publicity a lot easier and the option of liking/commenting on posts are favorable to getting people more involved. However, I’m fond of the format on the current webpage and like the idea of being able to search through genres. I might possibly try something out but I am still striving toward some tweaks to make. I hope to be able to post QR codes around the school in the future and continuing to create a larger variety on the website.