Moodle Monday (Labels, Choice Activity, Real Estate)

Label Resource: The most used modules in Moodle by first year Moodlers are the “Adding a link to a file or website”  and “Label” resources.  While these are not collaborative pieces, they are vital for teachers in being able to move and organize their resources online.  The Label module is especially useful in personalizing the Moodle course.  Some ways teachers use the Label resource:
·         To add pictures and graphics, making the page more dynamic
·         To give some immediate instruction or directions for activities to follow
·         To add a welcome or opening message
·         To help organize the page.  (Because labels can contain links, they can even be used to point to other items within Moodle.)

Here are some tidbits about using the Choice activity.  It is ones of the quickest & easiest activities to set up, yet can be used in a variety of ways .
1.       Formative assessment activity:  for a quick formative assessment activity in class, look to use the Choice activity.  It takes only a minute or two to set up and students complete it in under 20 seconds.  How have teachers used this for feedback?  Here are a few ways:
1.       Math:  Perform a quick quiz by posting a question, and the choices are the correct answer and several common wrong answers (and a choice of other… occasionally don’t put in a correct answer so this is the correct answer)
2.       Literature: Setup for the next reading in a novel by asking a foretelling question from the previous day’s reading
3.       English: Put up a definition and ask students to identify the correct word for that definition (or vice versa)
4.       Social Studies: post a picture of a country and ask students to identify it
5.       Science: Use the choice to set up an diagram identification question.
2.       Assignment activity: use the Choice activity as a down & dirty method for forming groups or assigning topics.  Since you can limit the number of times a selection can be made, you can set the size of the groups or number of people assigned a particular topic by default.  If you use groups to separate section hours of your class within the course, you can even set this activity to NOT use groups if you are forming groups or limiting topic assignments across sections of your course. 

  Screen Real Estate: you never know what browser and display settings a user has when viewing your course.  It is very important to keep this in mind when setting up the overall look of your course as you don’t want users frustrated by lots of scrolling to get to different sections of the course.  While the default setup may be in a 3 column layout, most courses that are pleasing to the eye and easy to navigate have the blocks moved around so that it is a 2 column layout instead: blocks on either the right or left side, and content over the rest of the page.  When in edit mode, you can use the arrows found at the top of the block to shift them from one side to the other… and up and down.

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