I'd like to know about any other plugins that other high school teachers have been using. Here are mine:
- Sharing Cart - I have several courses that are somewhat similar. It's nice to not have to recreate the same assignment from scratch for each course. For example, the student information assignment is the same for all of my classes.
- Generico - I can add animated countdowns to remind students of upcoming due dates for any assignment or quiz. I notice that high school students often don't see the very tiny due date or close date for a quiz or assignment.
- Level Up! - Makes the course a little more fun with a silly scoring system that has nothing to do with the real grades. You can choose pokemon pictures for your levels and show a leader board. It encourages students to investigate your entire moodle site a bit more for extra experience points. Instead of removing real points for tardies, I remove the "experience points" from their level.
- Game - I have a love/meh relationship with this plugin. It seems awesome, but sometimes it is so flakey or it slows down my moodle site. YMMV.
- Active Quiz - Basically this is similar to classroom clickers - where you pose a question online and students vote on it. It can quickly show you misunderstandings on topics. It's a much more dynamic way of teaching rather than using the moodle poll type question.
- Poodll - (not free anymore) - I use it where students can draw and sketch diagrams and upload online.
HTML block stuff
- RSS Feeds on technology CNN sites for current events.
- Random Glossary word of the day.
- Remind embed - shows the latest classroom text messages..
So you know any other good classroom plugins for high school classrooms:
This is a specific hack to the Online Users block. It allows users to post their mood or status along with their name. I think that the students get a kick out of setting their mood (busy, happy, meh, annoyed, sad). You can easily add a profile field without code, but to use that, you have to write code actually to put it next to their names. This is something that students enjoy on social media like facebook.
I'm going to add the ability to show the moods in forum posts as well.
Progress bar, either one. Many students like it as it tells them what
they need to finish at a glance. Many students hate it as it tells them
at a glance just how slack they have been
That's pretty slick. I guess it's one more thing I have to choose when setting up an assignment or quiz.
My question, if you have 60 assignments in the year, doesn't the completion block use a ton of website space? I'd rather it track just the last say 20 assignments, or ignore the ones that are past due..
No it creates a single bar with a block for each activity, so the blocks just get smaller. And you can always turn it back off for past activities - but that does somewhat remove the idea of showing users how much progress they are making.
I think in the latest version of the completion progress version (Michael deRaat's updated version of the Progress Bar) it can wrap onto several lines so they dont become too small.
And the progress bar (we use Completion Progress) on the dashboard is amazing! We place it in the middle area so it takes up most of the dashboard (on 3.1).
That's a great place to put it. Yeah I'm sold on it, and will definitely use it for next school year. The red blocks will "annoy" my students and "pester" them into knowing about the new assignments. I've just tested the plugin briefly on 3.3 and it seems to be fine.
Would like to see an image of your Completion Progress Bar
Before I retired, I only taught 7th and 8th grade students. Students who took my introductory computer applications class in the 7th grade, could take an advanced version of the course in 8th grade. I used all of the plugins mentioned here, so far, when I was activly teaching, plus the following.
Podcast (mod_pcast) My advanced class loved to make newscast videos of school events throughout the academic year. I had a really good computer set up with a good camera where they could film their segments and save them on our classroom server. They then edited and added subtitles while using their assigned computer. Once they had a newscast item finalized, they would upload it to the Podcast activity so that everyone could see it.
TicketTracker (mod_tracker) Had this set up on the front page so that everyone could create a ticket for anything to do with my computer lab or any class and lesson on the site.
Dialogue (mod_dialogue) I used dialogue to allow students to "talk" to me privately. We eventually got to the point where they could even record audio/video directly into dialogue converstations by using PoodLL. Made it a little easier when they were using a smart phone to make a recording instead of thumb typing a message.
Video Assessment (mod_videoassessment) This plugin was never available from Moodle and unfortunatley does not seem to be supported for current versions of Moodle. I got it from Moodle Asssociation of Japan Hub. Essentially, it was like a workshop for videos where a student could upload a video, have other students and the teacher assess it, make recommended changes, then upload a new version.
For the generico, can you please post the settings that you used for the animated countdown? I don't see it as a default item.