I’m planning on starting a video series on Canvas called: Show Us Your Course, in the coming weeks. I think it will be a great way to share what we’re discovering about Canvas, together, as most of us teach with it for the first semester. In the meantime, I thought it might be fun to share what some of our faculty are doing, creatively, in their Canvas courses.
Group Home Pages for Communication
Bridget O’Callaghan-Hay and Phil Reid are using the group home page to send announcements and post material for a multi-sectioned (or cross-listed) class, after combining the class sections.
Even if you don’t teach separate sections of the same class, the groups feature can be useful for group projects, study groups, or even creating more engagement in large classes. The Canvas Instructor Guide has more information about setting up groups in your classes, whether you want to create them yourself, or have students self-select their group.
Consistency in Program Development
Seon Chun-Burbank has paid attention to some of the important details, like including a graphic of her textbook(s) on her home page, to help ensure that students purchase the correct one.
She also has created a template for the Early Childhood Education courses (with the help and support of John Sim), so students going through their program can have greater consistency in their courses.
That First Impression
Siaumin Fung went through the Canvas training before the semester started. She wanted to create a great first impression for her students and get them excited about what they were about to learn. Her class’ homepage has a picture of a cell on it that reads, “It’s a cell world after all.”
Students’ Sing Their Answers to Quizzes
Joni Prado is using the quiz feature to assess how well her music students are learning to sight read music. The quiz questions are set up in essay format. She has a graphic of the music she wants them to sight read as part of the question.
Students then answer the questions by using the insert media button on the toolbar (see below) to record themselves singing along as they sight read the music she quizzed them on.
Reflection on Learning Through Discussion Boards
Finally, I’ve been giving my students an opportunity to develop their metacognition skills by asking them what they have questions about and what concepts they think they’ll be most challenged by via a discussion board at the end of each week.
These are not graded and not everyone is participating to date. However, those that are have thanked me for the opportunities to reflect on their learning and also for my effort to either answer their question in the discussion board, or bring it back into the classroom when we meet the following week.
I would love to hear what creative ways your leveraging Canvas in your teaching.
Let me know if you would like to have one of your classes featured in the Show Us Your Course video series that is coming up, or if you would just like to share more informally what you’re doing to help others discover something new in Canvas they may not know.