Best practices: Using the Moodle™ Lesson activity for differentiated learning experiences

One of my favorite features in Moodle™ is the Lesson activity. Why do I love the Lesson activity so much? Simply put it enables instructors to create differentiated learning paths for students or groups of students by strategically sequencing learning activities throughout a series of web pages. These differentiated learning paths also make it easier for instructors to remediate learning for their students.

Getting started

One of the simplest ways to begin using the Lesson activity is to incorporate question pages. Question pages add interactivity and enable instructors to provide automated timely feedback to students to supplement the learning process. Try to include specific feedback that relates to each answer option rather than providing blanket “Try again” statements. This is the perfect opportunity to tell the student why an answer is incorrect and/or how to approach the question differently to find the correct answer.

Incorporating branching

If you are already using questions in Lesson activities a good way to further remediate learning for students is to incorporate conditional branching. In the event that a student answers a question incorrectly conditional branching makes it possible to direct the student to additional content pages to help them reach the correct answer. Using conditional branching you can incorporate multiple learning paths into a single lesson. Each question response could “jump” the student to various areas of content within in the same Lesson activity. For example you could add a question page with three answer choices and each would lead to a different learning experience:

  • Answer 1 – This response is incorrect. You add remediation using the jump feature. This in turn takes the student back to the page where the content was covered. The student reviews information and then returns to the question screen.
  • Answer 2 – This is an incorrect response. You branch the student to additional content pages using the jump feature. You can hide these pages so that they don’t display in the lesson menu. The student can then review this information and then return to the question screen.
  • Answer 3 – This is the correct response. The student continues to the next question/content page.

You can even use questions as a mini “pre-test” to see if a student needs to review specific content. For example you could start the lesson with a question. Students who answer correctly would jump to another question page content page or the end of the lesson. Students who answer incorrectly would continue to content pages to learn more about the topic.

For more complex Lesson activities consider drawing a flow chart. This can be a simple sketch on a piece of paper. This will help you focus on the design and not the technology. The flow chart will then serve as your map when creating the Lesson in Moodle™.

I hope by reading this post you now love the Lesson activity as much as I do!

You can learn more about the Lesson activity and other activities in our Course Building Fundamentals online course.




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