I’ve posted about open source software in the past. One of my favorite pieces of open source software is Moodle. I’ve been working with Moodle for several years now. It keeps getting better and better. It is a very powerful tool. However, that power sometimes leads to a bit of confusion. The barrier to get going can be intimidating for some teachers.
I’ve been busy working on some projects that revolve around Moodle and making Moodle easier to use and understand. Some of these projects are public and some private. But all of them involve making Moodle easier to use for teachers.
I’ve been working on some tutorials for teachers that take the Common Core Standards and apply them to lessons within Moodle. The focus on these lessons is currently middle school lessons. The idea is that teachers can use the lessons directly, adapt them for their classroom (or grade level) and learn how to use Moodle along the way. This way, they can then implement their own lessons within Moodle as an expert. This is taking a lot longer than I had originally anticipated. However, it is not necessarily a bad thing. I continue learning and growing on implementing blended learning experiences. I’ve had the opportunity to teach in a blended learning situation. I also get to talk to teachers to learn exactly what their struggles are.
For some teachers, the basics are Moodle are confusing. I’m spending some time developing materials that should help teachers better understand the what and how – the main guts – of Moodle better. This leads to teachers having a deeper understanding and being more confident in using Moodle. I believe that this will pay off in spades in the long run.
I’ve also had the wonderful opportunity to be in a student role using Moodle. This refreshing point of view really helped me sharpen my instincts as to what can make Moodle easier to use for students. This, in turn, has encouraged me to continue pushing a couple of projects that will hopefully bear fruit soon.
I’m really fortunate to be able to work with a Moodle Master. Plus, I’ve made some other connections that are extremely valuable in learning how to use Moodle for instructional purposes. The idea of developing that support system is crucial to all. The sum is greater than any of the parts. For those that continue to help, support and push me, I’m grateful.