Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Easy Podcasting

In distance learning, students love to hear their professors' voices. It helps them connect to the instructor, when they don't sit in the classroom with them.

One easy way to do this, is to record podcasts for your class announcements and weekly wrap-ups. My new favorite free podcast tool is called "Cinch". You can create an account at http://cinch.fm. What's great about Cinch is that you can create a different folder for each of your classes. You can record from your computer, OR make a phone call! You can even record and manage the podcasts with their Iphone App. It works like Twitter, and you can place a 'feed' on your Moodle coursepages, so students can easily listen to your last podcasts.

This is how it looks on our coursepages! (see left side)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

XBox Kinect and 'Best Practices' for Student Learning

If you want to better understand how to redesign your courses for future students, you need to play Dance Central 2 on the XBox Kinect. Here's why:
  1. Personal Learning plans for students with a wide variety of experience levels
  2. Intermediate 'assessments' that reward and encourage in a safe environment
  3. Information is presented in a variety of ways to allow students to build skills they need, and skip those they have already mastered
  4. Collaborative learning environments both face-to-face and virtual.
  5. Fun and creative ways to practice skills combining music and visually appealing graphics
There is a lot of information on Game-based learning and Gesture-based computing, but I believe that just playing Dance Central for 30 minutes will help you understand these theories much better.