Reposted https://twitter.com/GlowScot/status/1531893505081192449 by Glow Scot (Twitter)

Are you looking for an introduction to Glow WordPress Blogs? In this webinar @DigiLearnScot are joined by Breadalbane Academy with lots of tips on how to access and use Glow Blogs and how they are being used in the classroom! https://ow.ly/5W4550Jisbv

Guide to getting started with #GlowBlogs. Input from
@KiwiGrant21 who’s marvellous pupil poetry blog, Breadalbane Academy P7 Poetry Blog is a brilliant example with poem ideas that are just great, I’ve borrowed a few:-)

Well I am quite excited. There is a new plugin in Glow Blogs, H5P. This is quite different from anything else in blogs.

H5P is a system for creating interactive HTML5 content. It can work inside several types of publishing platforms including WordPress.

The range of content types that you can create with H5P is pretty wide. Some are ways of presenting material, accordions, image galleries. Others are learning activities, quizzes, multi-choice questions, word searches and crosswords. More sophisticated types include interactive video. Videos can be paused by viewers to respond to questions and quizzes and 360 tours. Responses to quizzes, cloze procedures etc are gathered from logged on users.

You can combine these content types , or display them on a blog in different ways.

I’ve spent a bit of time making some simple examples for Glow Blogs which has allowed me to start to think about how best to use these.

I’ve also started to build up a small bank of resources for spelling for my class: igh example. So far I am only scratching the surface.

I’ve always enjoyed making online resources for my classes to use. but these can take a lot of time and can be difficult to make presentable or present. The H5P plug-in solves many of these problems and are made “inside” the blog.
Having them on a blog allows resources to be quite easily organised. The Display Posts plug-in or using the make theme helps. Post listing in Gutenberg will be useful too.

Here are a couple of examples embedded from Glow Blogs.

A 360 tour:

and a fill in the missing words exercise.

screenshot of pi.johnj.info/gb

One of the things I am interested in as part of my work on Glow Blogs is what people are using Glow Blogs for.

Glow Blogs is made of of 33 different WordPress multi-sites. One for each Local Authority in Scotland and one central one.

The home page of each LA lists the last few posts. Visiting these pages will give you an idea of what is going on. In the past I’ve opened up each L.A. in a tab in my browser and gone through them. I had a script that would open them all up. I’ve now worked out an easy way to give a quick overview.

Recently I noticed shot-scraper ,Tools for taking automated screenshots of websites . I’ve used various automatic webpage screenshot pages in the past. These have usually been services that either charge money or have shut down. I used webkit2png a wee bit, but ran into now forgotten problems, perhaps around https?

shot-scraper can be automated and extended. It is a command line tool and using these is always an interesting struggle. I usually just follow any instructions blindly, searching any problems as I go. In this case it didn’t take tool long.

Once installed shot-scraper is pretty easy to use. shot-scraper https://johnjohnston.info Dumps an image johnjohnston-info.png

There are a lot of options, you can output jpegs rather than pngs. Run some javascript before taking a screenshot or wait for a while. you can even choose a section of the page to grab.

So I can use shot-scraper to create screenshots of each LA homepage. Then display them on a web page for a quick overview of Glow Blogs.


    #!/bin/bash

    cd /Users/john/Documents/scripts/glowscrape/img

    URLLIST="ab as ac an ce cl dd dg ea ed el er es fa fi gc glowblogs hi in mc my na nl or pk re sa sb sh sl st wd wl"
    for i in $URLLIST ;
    do
        /usr/local/bin/shot-scraper -s "#glow-latest-posts" -j "jQuery('.pea_cook_wrapper').hide()" --quality 80 https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/"$i" -o  "$i".jpg && continue
    done;
    

This first hides the cookie banner displayed by blogs and then screenshots the #glow-latest-posts section of the page only.

The script continues by copying the image over to my raspberry pi where they are shown on a web page

I hit a couple of problems along the way. The first was that the script stopped running when it could not find the #glow-latest-posts section. This happens on a couple of LAs who have no public blogs. adding && continue to the screenshot fixed that.

The second problem came when I wanted to run the script regularly. OSX schedules tasks with launchd. I’ve used Lingon X to schedule a few of these. Since I recently updated my system I first needed to get a new version of Lingon X. I then found that increased security gave me a few hoops to jump through to get the script to run.

I think it would have been simpler to do the whole job on a raspberry pi. But I was not sure if it would run shot-scraper. I’ll leave that for another day and a newer pi.

This is a pretty trivial use of a very powerful tool. I’ve now got a webpage that gives me a quick overview of what is going on in Glow Blogs and took another baby step in bash.

The first thing that surprised me was the lack of featured Images on the blog posts. These not only make the LA home pages took nicer they also make display blog posts on twitter more attractive.

I’ve had to search for this one several times so putting it here so that it might make it stick or be easier to find.

Sometimes working with my pupils I want to send them to a blog, have them logged on but not go to the dashboard.

the login url has a redirect_to parameter.

So I I use a url like
blog-address/wp-login.php?redirect_to=page-I-want-the-pupil-to-go-to

Where blog-address is the blog I want them to log on to and page-I-want-the-pupil-to-go-to is a relative or full url

I often share notes to my class via AirDrop and hide long urls but typing a name, selecting it and making it a link, ⌘-k on mac. Unfortunalty you have to create linked text in another app on iOs and paste it in.

RSS Via Shortcode for Page & Post

I’ve been using this plugin on several pages on this site for a while. Recently I’ve seen errors on some of the pages and occasionally on other posts pointing to this plugin. I checked and it has not been updated for 7 years, so decided to pull the plug.

Rather than find a new plugin I just changed the pages to use the new Blocks editor and add feeds using some blocks.

For some I used the Display Remote Posts Block – WordPress plugin. This I discovered & installed through the add block interface & found later that it has installed a plugin. On others I used the built in RSS & podcast player blocks. All three seem to do the job.

Examples: RSS block, Podcast Block & Display Remote Posts.

I am not ready for the Block editor full time on this blog. I’ve been exploring it a little on Glow Blogs. But I’ve got a few things here that are incompatible (eg. Post Kinds plugin) and for my blog the classic editor, is usually more than enough.

Every now and again I take a trawl through all the Local Authority Glow Blog home pages. It is interesting to see into all sorts of learning going on across Scotland. Here are a few that caught my eye:

Linked, in my mind at least, is outdoor learning, there is a fair bit of that going on too:

 

Windscape is an exciting children’s adventure that explores the dilemma between the usefulness of wind farms and the beautiful scenery they can sometimes destroy.

Paul Murdoch, the author of Windscape has recorded the audio for each chapter, created learning material and made them available for free.

With Paul’s permission I’ve taken the resources and turned it into a Glow Blog.

Windscape – an exciting children’s adventure by Paul Murdoch

and a podcast to which you can subscribe on: apple or android.

I have already started using the resource with my class and am looking forward to continuing.

As the audio is a blog it is easy to change things, we are open to adding to the learning resources if anyone has ideas. You can get in touch through the site.

Bookmarked Re: Get direct download link of a file in OneDrive for Business (TECHCOMMUNITY.MICROSOFT.COM)
Use "Get link", then use "People with existing access" to get the direct link to the file. Then, the url will be direct path to https://org.sharepoint.com/personal/user_org/folder/filename.ext?d=oiuqjaweorihjlkj Now, just remove everything after the ? and put in download=1 and magic happens. https://org.sharepoint.com/personal/user_org/folder/filename.ext?download=1

This works fine with files in Glow OneDrive even for publicly shared files.

I’ve started to use it on my class blog to share files. Here is a simple example. A PowerPoint on my onedrive, publicly shared, the first link is the standard share link, the second has the download parameter.

https://glowscotland-my.sharepoint.com/:p:/g/personal/gw09johnstonjohn4_glowmail_org_uk/EVaRRmxQ5sdLuGfRss9xM7gBW4hpamdB48iNfKbixRpOUg?e=tegAeu

https://glowscotland-my.sharepoint.com/:p:/g/personal/gw09johnstonjohn4_glowmail_org_uk/EVaRRmxQ5sdLuGfRss9xM7gBW4hpamdB48iNfKbixRpOUg?Download=1