Best practices: Using Moodle™ for a blended classroom experience

Are you running out of ideas for using Moodle™ in your classroom? For designers and instructors it’s easy to get stuck in a pattern of using the same activities over and over again. Don’t feel bad if you do as we’re all creatures of habit. Sure activities that we aren’t familiar with can be intimidating and time-consuming to learn but the payoff can be huge. Below are some activities that you can add to your course to increase collaboration. However be warned! Incorporating these activities can cause drastic increases in student engagement and motivation!

Forums

This is one of the most commonly used activities. Forums enable students and instructors to discuss topics reply to each other and even rate responses. The forum activity is a great way to add collaboration between students and instructors. One of my personal favorites is the Q & A forum because it requires students to reply to a thread before being able to view class member responses.

  • Quick tip: Try dividing students into small groups and tell them to meet with their groups to discuss a provided topic. Then each group can post to the forum.

Database

This activity is great for collecting and storing information such as text dates files and URLs. Plus it enables instructors and/or participants to build display and search entries about any conceivable topic. You can add information by creating an entry form and control the visual layout by using templates. The format and structure of these entries can be almost unlimited.

  • Quick tip: Try using one for a course project. Instruct students to upload the assignment into the database for their peers to review and comment.

Chat

This allows participants to have a synchronous discussion. You can use it to conduct Q &A sessions before a test hold virtual office hours or establish an informal meeting place for group projects so students can communication with their group members.

Wiki

This is a fast way to build user-generated content and it is a powerful tool for collaborative work.

  • Quick tip: If you haven’t used this activity yet in your classroom try using it for a group project or as a brainstorming tool.

Glossary

This activity allows participants to create and maintain a list of definitions. It’s like a collaborative dictionary for your students; participants can even add media to the entries to help explain concepts and terms. If you wish you can also build it independently to share with the class. Go ahead add one to your course and ask students to add a few entries!

Workshop

This is my personal favorite even though it is one of the most complex to learn. Workshop allows students to create their own projects assess the work produced by their peers and complete a self-assessment. This activity has multiple steps for step up and for implementing in the classroom. It typically takes several days or even weeks to complete but it is deserving of your time!

  • Quick tip: If you have a class project that requires a written piece of work use workshop to formally structure peer feedback and provide students with an opportunity to revise polish and finalize it.

To master these activities in Moodle™, check out our new online training course.

Thanks for reading,

~Rebecca

Carl

Carl

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