Set up Google blogs to display in Hapara Dashboard Follow

Hapara Dashboard has the capability to display students' posts and comments from Google Blogs. This article explains how to set up Google Blogs to display in Hapara Dashboard.

Creating Blogs

Creating Blogs for Students

This option can be useful in elementary or primary schools, especially if students should only receive author rights to their blogs. We recommend making blogs through accounts that do not correspond to teachers or staff members. Using an account like blog_maker@your_domain.org will prevent blogs from being orphaned if a user leaves the school and the user's account is suspended.

Because users can only have 100 blogs, you will need to use multiple accounts if want to create blogs for more than 100 students. Once a blog is made, whoever made it will be the blog's administrator, and that account must give other users access to the blog.

Letting Students create their own Blogs

In secondary schools, students might make blogs themselves. If so, then students will be administrators of their blogs, so they will have to share the blogs with their teachers.

 

Setting Permissions for a Blog

You can control who can edit your blog, and who can read it. There are three levels of access to a blog:

  1. Admins have full access to a blog. They can create, modify, and delete posts; approve and delete comments; and change access permissions on the blog.
  2. Authors can create blog posts and modify their own posts.
  3. Reader can view blogs and post comments if comments are enabled.

Please follow these guidelines when setting permissions on student blogs:

  • Students must have Admin or Author access to a blog for Teacher Dashboard to show a student's activity on the blog.
  • Only one student should have Admin or Author access to a blog.
  • Teachers should have Admin access to students' blogs. This lets teachers edit students' posts and moderate comments if need be.

For more information please see this Google Support Article.

Naming Blogs

A Google blog is identified by the prefix at the start of the blog's address. For example, the blog xyz.blogspot.com is identified by the prefix xyz. A blog's prefix must be unique among all Google blogs worldwide. As a result, we recommend using a naming convention like this for a blog's prefix:

<school_prefix>-<blog_type>-<partial_student_username>
Example: pte-sb-anne123

In the example above:

  • pte is the school code
  • sb (short for student blog) is the blog type
  • anne123 is the student's partial username
    We recommend using a partial username so that a student's username is not exposed to the public through a blog's URL.

Setting up Hapara Dashboard to display Blog Activity

To view blogging activity through Teacher Dashboard, the blog must be specified in the Classes Spreadsheet. There are a few different scenarios:

Showing Posts from Specific Blogs

If students have their own blogs, then the Student Blogs column of the classes spreadsheet should specify the first part of the blog's prefix, excluding the student's username. If the naming convention for blogs specified above is used, then the value in the Student Blogs column would be:

<school_prefix>-<blog_type>
Example: pte-sb

If students have one blog for each class, then the Student Blogs column of the classes spreadsheet will have different values for each class.

Showing Posts with Specific Labels

Hapara Dashboard can show only blog posts with a specific label. For example, students might have one blog but put "english" or "science" labels on their posts. The Student Blogs column should specify the value:

<school_prefix>-<blog_type>/<label>
Example: pte-sb/english

The label of the posts must be in lower case.

Showing Posts from Multiple Blogs in one Class

If students have multiple blogs (or if their blogs were created without using the convention above), then you can specify the value any in the Student Blogs column. Hapara Dashboard will show all activity from all blogs for which students have Admin or Author access.

For example:

 
The spreadsheet above demonstrates these scenarios for what Hapara Dashboard displays for Google Blogs:
  • Rows 2 and 3: Hapara Dashboard will display posts and comments in any blogs for which students have Author or Admin access.
  • Row 4: Hapara Dashboard will display posts and comments from blogs that have a prefix of tts-math-<partial_student_ID>.
  • Row 7: Hapara Dashboard will display posts and comments from blogs that have a prefix of ttd-science-<partial_student_ID>.
  • Row 5: Hapara Dashboard will show posts and comments with the label math from blogs that have a prefix of tts-sb-<partial_student_ID>.
  • Row 6: Hapara Dashboard will show posts and comments with a label of science from blogs that have a prefix of tts-sb-<partial_student_ID>.
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