I have had no formal training in Moodle. Everything that I know has been gathered carefully from all of the amazing questions, projects and problems people have proposed to me. In this way, everything I know how to do has been learned in context and with a true purpose of helping someone else or myself. I propose that this course be constructed in as much the same way as we can possibly make it.
First, let’s establish the learning space a bit:
- An Online or Hybrid class meets wherever you can gather enough people together to learn something. Our class’ environment will be in our central moodle classroom, your individual classrooms, in our backchannel, and in our own personal writing/brainstorming space (mine is this blog). The reason why we keep multiple spaces is so that we can learn to accept the one truth of online learning (and especially of Moodle): Everything is the same, even if it looks different. Furthermore, everything is possible, even if you don’t know how right now.
- Our central Classroom is right here. I made a short link of it: http://bit.ly/moodle4learning. If you aren’t enrolled, enroll. If you don’t have an account, create one.
- Our backchannel for questions, comments, reflections, and general conversation is at http://twitter.com/moodle4learning. If you would like to post, you can do so by texting #4learning and your thoughts to 3037206269 or by simply logging in to twitter and posting with the hashtag of #4learning. We will keep this backchannel so that our course can have a real purpose and real audience outside of our district.
- You have two options for the class. You can go along with us a bit and work on the different facets of Moodle at the pace of the group, or you can go through the self-paced portion of the classwork and set up your own classroom. The benefit of hanging around with the rest of us, is that we will form a community to help one another out. The benefit of going at your own pace is that you can go at your own pace, whether that is ridiculously fast or unnervingly slow.
- You will get as much out of the environment as you want to. It is not my job to make sure that everyone accomplishes the same things or learns the same materials. It is my responsibility that everyone who attends and completes this course will be able to create a course of their own that they (and the community of learners involved within it) can be proud of.
Second, let’s figure out what an online class is all about.
I happen to believe that online learning is all about three things:
- The Content
- The Action, learning process, reflection, etc.
- The Submit
We need to spend some time brainstorming what is possible within those three things. And we need to keep coming back to this diagram as we start to expand our knowledge of what is possible. Post your own diagram in our Discussion Forum or in the Backchannel (or both).
Third, let’s figure out what problem you are trying to solve.
It isn’t enough to just know how to set up an online course. There is very little satisfaction in knowing how to create a course in Moodle just for the sake of it. There really has to be a basis for what it is that you are trying to do. So, we need to at least craft a problem or question that will be the one we are trying to go after throughout the next two days.
Good example questions are:
- How can I create an engaging presentation for my students so as to cause them to act and get excited about creating their own?
- What is the best activity for essay writing revision?
- How can I upload all of my already created content and have those be interactive enough so that I don’t have to recreate everything?
Please put your question into the Backchannel so that everyone can share in the learning.
Thank you for joining in on this journey. Moodle is the primary tool, but better online courses is outcome we are after.