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HTML I is a one-semester elective that helps
students learn the basic skills required to design sites for the
World Wide Web. It is a hands-on, learn-by-doing experience.
The course is set up as follows: Students are asked to complete a series of class projects. These projects begin very simply, but as students' skills develop, they get a chance to demonstrate their growing competence by producing more and more sophisticated sites. Students who approach the course with diligence and develop the necessary skills will do well on these more complex projects.
The majority of the grade comes from these projects. Students who do their projects in a timely manner and incorporate the suggestions of the instructor receive full credit. Deductions are made for lateness, however, and students should be aware that lateness can have a cumulative effect. If they are unable to complete all assignments because of falling behind, they receive lower grades for the late work and zeroes for the work not done.
Tests, scheduled just before interim reports, encourage students to keep up. The test questions are drawn from the content of the projects, so students who stay up to date and try to do their best in class will do well on tests.
This style of education, called "project-based learning," requires a certain amount of self-discipline and self-control from students. Thus, students who are unwilling to show these qualities typically fail the class. Please do not attempt to blame the instructor for this situation. If a student cannot resist the temptation to waste time with Internet games and email, there is no one to blame but the student.
Students should become thoroughly familiar with the class policies. Many of the classroom rules are simply common parts of being a member of a school community, but others are tied to the Wake County Acceptable Use Policy. Violating those rules can have severe consequences, and claims of ignorance will not receive much sympathy.
With that out of the way, we can proceed on a lighter note. The course is designed for many types of students and everyone can succeed in class. Some students may want to get a general background in HTML as an aid to their studies. Others may want to help out around the school by qualifying to work with the Web Development Team, the group who designs and updates the school Web site. The HTML I students with the best skills and work habits can usually move on in that direction if they want to.
Beyond those possibilities, this course has other advantages. Many of the projects assigned by other teachers at SRHS can be submitted as Web sites, either on floppies or CD-ROMs. Also, the product requirement of that all-important Graduation Project can take the form of a Web site. Similar opportunities arise at college, so many of our college-bound students decide to learn the basics early.
For some students, this class offers a chance to get started in a full- or part-time career. The market fluctuates, of course, but a designer with top-notch skills usually can find work. A surprising variety of other jobs require competence with HTML, so this class is a résumé builder and one of the more useful skills we teach!
Wait a minute! What caused those little accent thingies to appear over the e in résumé? All this and more will become clear as the course continues!
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