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Lesson 2: Web page structure

Lesson objectives

  • Explain how a website is structured: placing of text/image, use of hyperlinks (multi-layered)
  • Explain the terms linear and non-linear and how these relate to reading a website (and books)

Starter (10 minutes)

Ask pupils to swiftly recall at least two points they were learning last lesson. Use think/pair/share or could write points on sticky notes and stick on flipchart.

Main (40 minutes)

Explain to pupils that they are going to actively explore the structure of a website to understand the context for the writing they are going to do. For this activity you will need a ball of string and to prepare cards or mini-whiteboards labelling different web pages (these need to match the names of pages on the website you will display in the lesson).

Display a website on the board, for example WaterAid, which uses the conventions you wish to explore. Pupils to be assigned different aspects of the website on large cards, for example home page, and the various buttons/hyperlinks the website uses.

One pupil is the mouse who will carry a ball of string. Depending on the size of the group, some pupils will be the website, others will be the reader. The pupils acting as the reader will tell the ’mouse’ where to click, as they choose which bits of the website they want to visit. The teacher or another pupil will carry out the same instructions on the IWB.

Give the readers ’treasure hunt’ questions, see examples on resource W3.3, to find key things learned about in the previous lesson. The mouse will join together the different pages or pop-ups visited, linking them with string so that the string visually and physically represents the reading approach. Ask pupils to talk about what they see and how they would describe the way they have read the text. Ask them to compare this way of reading to reading a story like Cinderella or a set of instructions (obviously a story with flashback will not be directly linear). Introduce ’linear’ and ’non-linear’ and ask pupils to explain these terms and refer to them throughout the lesson.

Ask pupils if they have used any learning from the previous lesson in this activity, for example terms used for website conventions and layout. Working as a whole class discuss why websites are organised like this:

  • What are the difficulties when we try to read like this?
  • What are the benefits?
  • Have you ever been confused by a website? Why?
  • What would you now change about the way you read it?

Individual support

Teaching assistant (TA) to support identified pupils by re-wording instructions and clarifying learning points.

Plenary (10 minutes)

When we create our web pages what will we need to use/think about? Collect answers on a flipchart. Link to the way non-fiction texts are organised and read, for example contents page and index. On evaluation sheet or in exercise books pupils note down:

  • What I learned
  • How I have learned it.


interactive whiteboard (IWB)/flipchart; internet access for two pupils per computer, resource W3.3

Suggested focus words

  • read, activity, mouse, links, learned
  • persuasion, linear, non-linear, explanation, organised.