Showing posts from November, 2010

A Life Cycle App - App Review for IEAR

App Title: A Life Cycle App

Grade Level: 4th-9th Grade

Purpose: A A Life Cycle App walks the user through (currently) ten different biological life cycles.  Some examples of cycles the user can choose from include phases of the moon, pollination & fertilization, life cycle of the butterfly, water cycle, and oxygen cycle.  Each phase in a cycle is represented with graphics and/or pictures.  Touching a graphic brings up information about that phase in a text box.  Audio accompanies the text so the user could listen to the information as well as reading it.

Program Functionality:B
The Life Cycle App has very little interactivity for the user.  The user basically can click on the graphic/picture within the cycle to read or listen to long boxes of text about that item.  While it is a step up from a static textbook, it is little different than going to a website with similar information.  Additionally, the screen seems very cluttered which can be an issue with many students.

Overall Educatio…

Moodle Monday - the Feedback Activity

I often get told that the Quiz Module is very time-intensive and overwhelming, especially for newer Moodle users, so I thought we would look at the Feedback module today as an easy to use alternative.The Feedback module is a great assessment piece that can often times suffice in place of a quiz.

To begin, when you add a Feedback activity you provide some general information, such as giving it a Name (just like any other activity) and a Description.  Think of the description as the directions you want to give the users that are filling out the feedback.

Before you get to creating your questions, you have several other options you can set.  Like other activities, you can set the availability timing of the feedback and group settings.  But in between those two items are a few interesting options unique to the feedback.

First, is the Feedback Options area.  You can choose whether the responses are recorded with the user’s name or if they are anonymous.  You can also select to show the anal…

Moodle Monday - Uploading Multiple Files at One Time

Happy Monday of Thanksgiving week, Moodle users!
Today, in  honor of our shortened week, I am sharing a trick to shorten the time needed to upload files to your Moodle site!  This trick is useful for Moodlers of every level :-)
If you have a bunch of (or even just a few) files you want to use in your Moodle course, you DO NOT have to go through the “Upload File” process for each file… (do I hear that gasp of wonder?) You can go through the process just once using the steps outlined below:
1.Put all the files you want to upload into a folder on your computer.

2. Compress the file (Windows XP: Right-click the folder, select “Send To” and select “Compress (zipped) Folder”; Macintosh: control+click the folder, select “Compress”).  This will create a zipped file with the same name as the folder, ending in .zip.

3. Navigate to your Moodle course and login
4. In the Administration Block, click on Files to access the course files

5. Click on Upload

6. Browse and select your zipped fil…

Five Friday Finds

Often, finding good web resources are the hardest part of the job for an educator.  With all the demands on a teacher's time, who has time to spend searching?  If this is you, here are some resources you may found useful.  Please feel free toshare with others!

Teachers' Domain:
"Teachers' Domain is a free digital media service for educational use from public broadcasting and its partners. You’ll find thousands of media resources, support materials, and tools for classroom lessons, individualized learning programs, and teacher professional learning communities."  This is a NSF funded project that currently is being updated quite regularly.

Basic Algebra Wikibook:
Great resource for students.  Each "lesson" has vocabulary, lesson, example problems, practice games and practice problems.  This is part of an entire Algebra series that are…

Moodle Monday- Some Forum features & types

Some Moodle Forum features you might not know about, but might find a use for:
Tracking of read posts:  ("Read tracking for this forum?") Turning this feature on shows the user which posts have not been looked at yet by making them bold.  Adding attachments: You can have users share files within a forum, such as podcasts, documents, presentations, etc. This can be an area that students share or showcase some of their work with each other.Post threshold: Enabling this will set a limit to the number of posts the participants can make within a certain time period.  For instance, 10 posts per day.I get many questions about the different types of forums and how to use them.  Here's a brief rundown of them:
Single, simple discussion: discussion with a single topic, where all responses show on a single page.  Some common uses: an area for students to share/showcase an assignment; a discussion that does not have lots of depth.Each person posts one discussion: every partic…

Five Friday Finds

Often, finding good web resources are the hardest part of the job for an educator.  With all the demands on a teacher's time, who has time to spend searching?  If this is you, here are some resources you may found useful.  Please feel free toshare with others!
100 Terrific Sites to Find Primary Source History Documents:
A list of some of the sites that “feature primary source documents, recordings, images, and more.”

National Geographic’s Great Migrations:
“This fall, National Geographic Channel will premiere a one-of-a-kind special event entitled Great Migrations. In conjunction with this compelling programming event we are pleased to offer the Great Migrations Education Initiative. The initiative features standards-based lesson plans, video content and a virtual assembly that will join students …

Moodle Monday- Embedding & Hiding content

Today we'll look at embedding content and how to hide information on your Moodle course.

1. Embedding content: Since Moodle pages have their base in HTML, you can always embed web content onto your course.  The easiest way is to first generate the embed code for the content.  Most sites will provide an easy way to do this... usually with a click of a button (for instance, on YouTube the Embed button is underneath the video).  Copy the code provided.  Add a label resource to your course. On the the editing toolbar, click the icon with the <> characters.  This will change it so you see the HTML code in the window.  Paste in the code you copied.  Save the resource.  Try it for yourself... go snag a YouTube video and put in on your course!

2.  Hiding Information:  Sometimes you encounter a situation where you need to link to a piece of information you want hidden from general view.  Or you might be trying to "pretty" up your page by linking pictures to act…

Five Friday Finds

I know it is Monday; I'm playing catch-up after taking Friday off!
Often, finding good web resources are the hardest part of the job for an educator.  With all the demands on a teacher's time, who has time to spend searching?  If this is you, here are some resources you may found useful.  Please feel free toshare with others!
General- A Visit to Copyright Bay: Site to “inform and entertain educators about copyright in a non-profit setting.”
ELA- Road to Grammar: Site has quizzes, practice & game activities for students to improve their grammar.  There is a download area where teachers can download the quizzes in pdf format, and 100 conversation questions.
Math- The National Math Trail: “The National Math Trail is an opportunity for K-12 teachers and students to discover and share the math that exists in their own environments. Students explore their communi…

Moodle Monday-Compose a Webpage Resource & HTML Blocks

Today I have some ideas for using some of the web design abilities on your Moodle course.  Before you say, “I can’t do web design!” please note that you don’t need to know a lick of HTML in order to use either of these features!

1. One module often overlooked is the Compose a Webpage resource. When you are creating an unit/lesson/activity that includes directions and/or multiple resources you can put all these pieces together on a single page within your Moodle using this feature, and prevent the long list on your course entry page. You have files that need to be used? No problem! Upload the files in your Files directory first, then you can right click (Mac Users: control click) on each one’s name to copy the unique URL that Moodle assigns it; you can then paste this on the webpage you are creating. Additionally you have access to the HTML editing toolbar so you can easily emphasize certain parts of the activity, add pictures or just make it look pretty.

2. A great way to…