The links to the left will display a brief description of the different sites I've developed.
The descriptions below offer information about the various websites I've designed. Links are provided to sites that exist today as I designed them (with possible content updates as the only changes). Sites that have changed entirely since my work have no link provided.
Animal Farm Literature Game
One of my favorite books when I was in school, I was excited to create this political adventure when a classmate told me she would be teaching this book to her students. Students balance cooperation and competition in a secret simulation of government that offers them the opportunity to gain power and wealth, and even make laws that affect the outcome of the game. Themes from the book are demonstrated through students' own actions in the game, allowing for interesting class discussion and direct connection to student learning.
Lord of the Flies Literature Game
During student teaching, one of my classmates created a one-day challenge based on the book for his students. I turned his game into an interactive online game played simultaneously with reading the book. Students are immersed in a virtual desert island where they discuss concepts from the book and work in groups to survive until the end of the game. Participation in the game increased interest in reading the book as well.
Minnesota Geography Awareness Week
The "Downstream Challenge" was an interactive online competition across all of Minnesota. Teachers from over 40 MN schools created teams in their classrooms that competed in daily geography trivia, social media challenges, and other interactive educational activities and games. Over 2,000 students participated in the contest. The feedback received from both students and teachers was extremely positive, so next year's contest should be even bigger. You can log in as a guest Student with the following information (automatically populated and logged in when you click the link below):
One of my professors asked me to update/remove all the dead links on the wiki site for his textbook. Rather than click through the site manually, I created a site crawler that indexed the site, creating an outline and retrieving the HTTP page status for each link on the site. This isn't lazy - it's efficient - because we now have a tool that he can use on another half dozen wiki sites he manages to keep his information updated.
Basic Quilt Designs
As a gift for someone, I created a quilting design website that allows users to enter dimensions for a quilt, then create the design itself on a grid generated from the dimensions the user inputs. Once a design is complete, the site calculates how much of each different material the user needs to create the project. Users can even email or text the materials lists to themselves for easy shopping.
The "Schedule an Appointment" page uses PHP and MySQL to allow users to schedule real estate showings. Users register on the site, then select days and times for appointments with just a couple clicks. The site owner has an interface on the page (not visible to anyone else) that allows the ability to populate the calendar with appointment days and times. The calendar automatically hides occupied timeslots so users know what times are yet available, and reminds both the site owner and clients via text or email (their preference) of their upcoming appointments.
EZ Web Page Creator
While volunteering at a local school, teaching web-development workshops, I created a simple website code generator that would allow students an introduction to simple CSS and jQuery code. The tool allows students to choose different attributes for their webpages and then examine the code the generator creates to learn how the different chunks of code change information display and functionality on their pages.
I do a lot of cooking (and experimenting in cooking), so I thought it would be handy to have a quick "cheat sheet" spice chart to use when trying to figure out what spices to add to my masterpieces. Any site I've found online has far too much information to quickly scan, so I wanted to compile it all into a single page. Of course, being the web geek that I am, I had to add different filtering features to the page so I can narrow my options quickly.
Owner Finance Direct
Owner Finance Direct is an online real-estate resource that brings buyers and sellers together using user-gathered input, where users create account, then post information about houses they have for sale, or post criteria for houses they would like to buy. The website then matches like characteristics and notifies buyers and sellers via email of potential matches.
Personal Weather Gadget
Because this is the type of nerdy stuff I enjoy in my free time, I created a small weather gadget that I use on my personal bookmarks page. It uses a JSON feed from Weather Underground that I parse with PHP into a small strip in my bookmarks window, so I don't have to actually bookmark a weather site or spend time googling. Yes, it sounds lazy, but I like to call it "efficient" instead.
The Nexcare homepage contains numerous jQuery elements, including a scrolling product category list that uses XSLT to render multiple XML files as data elements to be inserted into the jQuery carousel, as well as an interactive rotating page banner, complete with user controls for manually navigating the information in the banner.
One of the most interesting and exciting websites I helped develop, the Globefield site offered educational information about various countries throughout the world to gradeschool children in a fun and interactive manner. We offered information about numerous cultural aspects of each country we explored, along with hundreds of images of national landmarks. My favorite ongoing projects with this site were the online games, as I was in charge of creating and developing educational variations of children's games, such as Hang-Man, Tic-Tac-Toe, Memory, and more.