Using what we already have

I’ve spent a lot of time over the past few days investigating the Modules function on Canvas and thinking about how we can use what we already have access to.

Some observations:

1 – Crocodoc is now AppBox and is nothing that we can’t accomplish Google/Drive.  Not worth it.

2 – Voicethread will be great, but I appear to be slow on the learning curve.  I think it will work well for annotating documents in addition to images and video.  One question – I set up a test account for a student in a test course called Patterson Test Group.  When I log in as the student (no problem logging in, so the account was well set up) but I can’t access the Patterson Test Group or any of the threads I’ve started… any ideas?  For what it’s worth, it seems to work on the ipad but not on a computer.  And another question – I’m concerned about how I might properly cite my sources (web images, pdfs of excerpts from books, etc.)  Has anyone done this?

3 – I think it will be important to maximize the tools that we already have so as not to re-invent the wheel every time.  I’ve been making progress on my first Module, and for now I’ve made the decision to have the grammar (review lessons for advanced kids) be self-paced through Canvas and we can then apply skills via content in class.  I’ve been using material from the textbook so that it will align with what we are discussing in class.

I’m also considering using the discussion feature as a blog for each student to be ongoing throughout the year.  Again, we could have kids set up wordpress accounts, or we could use what we have.  (WordPress is certainly flashier…) This blog post from the site Langwitches (from the Twitter feed that Kim just sent out) supports the use of blogging for students as good pedagogy.


For now, I’m moving forward with my first unit considering essential questions, desired outcomes and assessments.  Since it will be a new course next year, I had to do some basic framework for the year in terms of the same questions before I could look at the unit.  So far so good.


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