5 Techniques for Integrating Moodle Tools Into Class Discussions
This blog post showcases ways in which integrating techniques for priming students with Moodle™ tools into the learning experience can be used to encourage active involvement.
1) Integrating Assignment Responses Into Class Discussions
Reading responses, submitted through Moodle™’s Assignment module, can be used to help students prepare for class. You can also use these assignments as a way to initiate conversations by introducing student responses into the discussion yourself.
For example, you can anonymously share a student’s response to an assessment item and ask the group to share their reactions. This can spark discussion and debate while protecting the identity of individual students. Be sure to encourage students to provide supporting evidence for their statements to promote critical thinking.
2) Using Messages to Prompt Group Conversation
When a student asks a good question or makes a good point through the Messages block, share it with everyone during class. This public recognition encourages students to speak up in class. As an added bonus, it reinforces that the Messages block is a legitimate way to get in touch with you and can encourage students to ask you questions that they might not feel are worth the trouble of an office visit.
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3) Flip Class Discussions With Forums
By having students participate in a Forum before the face-to-face class session, they’ll exchange much of the top-level discussion prior to your in-person session, leading to a deeper level of discussion during class. Not only can this help you cover more content, but often, these discussions are more engaging, drawing an increased number of students into the conversation.
4) Build on Prior Knowledge With Moodle™’s Choice Feature
Pedagogically speaking, using a simple polling tool like Choice encourages learners to think about their existing knowledge of, and understanding of, a given topic. This has two benefits. First, it forces participants to engage with their choice and think about the context and consequences of it. Second, this tool allows teachers (and students, if you so choose) to gain a better understanding of current student views and knowledge as they relate to the discussion topic.
5) Use eLearning Tools to Reinforce Learning and Build Student Confidence
Students have busy lives. They work, carry heavy class loads, participate in extracurricular activities, and sometimes they’re parents, too. With fragmented schedules, even those students with the best of intentions may shelve thoughts relating to our course content when they walk out the door at the end of class.
Technology creates continuity between class meetings and can leave students feeling more prepared for engagement. Consider using the News forum in your learning management system to send reminders that highlight upcoming discussion points. This allows students to prepare mentally for the upcoming conversation by focusing on key points.
The Quiz module can stimulate in-class discussion by reinforcing student understanding of the material. It makes sense that the more a student knows about a subject, the more likely they are to share that knowledge with the rest of the class.
To accomplish this, consider setting the quiz to show correct answers after a student has submitted their response. Knowing what they know about a subject inspires confidence that can encourage even shy students to seek out participation opportunities.
Make Your Tech Tools Work for Your Students
Learning isn’t a spectator sport. Consider your classroom, your students, and your teaching style when incorporating ideas into your teacher toolkit. Remember, technology is a tool. Use it to build up your in-class discussion, then hang on and enjoy the ride.Open LMS offers extensive eLearning solutions and unparalleled customer support. Contact us to learn more.
This blog post was written by Tara Thompson, a former learning designer at Open LMS.