TEACHING K-12 STUDENTS ONLINE
Leigh Graves Wolf and Andrea Zellner
This is an 18 week online Graphic Arts course created on WordPress. Click on the title or the picture to view my online Graphic Design Course.
Reflection of My Online Course Creation
This process has been a wonderful experience. I have really enjoyed taking my curriculum for an 18 week Graphics Arts Course and putting it online. My course will always be a work in progress. With technology constantly transforming and my desire to learn what works best for specific groups a students will my require constant modification in my course. The idea of continual change excites me as and educator and as a lifelong student.
Putting my course online has made me feel more organized and prepared to teach this course than I have ever felt. It also pushed me to organize all of my documents into Google Docs. By having all of my rubrics, vocabulary lessons, directions, Screencasts, and images I stored in Google Docs I never have to be concerned about a lost piece of my lesson or accidentally deleted something. I would advise all future students to do this. Having all of my documents saved in the "cloud" it would be simple to transfer the information to a different host site.
When I first began the process of putting my course online , I was not sure what Open Source to use. My critera was large and my budget small, and WordPress appeared to fit both. Overall, WordPress was a wonderful site that allowed me to let my students reflect, add pages, use twitter, add pictures and embed Google forms. The downfall of this site is that you cannot change font or font size. I am a visual person and it bothered me that I could not make some of the text larger. Weebly has been the site I have used so far and it allows a lot more creativity in that area. I also struggled with WordPress at times because it would leave large spaces between paragraphs or no space at all even when your screen did not show the same thing.
For my course I wanted to make sure that is was very clear, organized and easy to navigate. I created a syllabus and posted and instructional video to help guide the students, administration and parent through the course. I also set up each of my lessons the same in the same order, and fashion. I believe that consistency will make it each lesson more assessable for the students.
Another important factor I wanted to make sure that I incorporated were many different learning styles. To do this, each of my lessons contains a vocabulary search, written instructions, visual examples, and videos demonstrating how to do the project on Photoshop.
Another big factor in setting up my course was creating scaffolding for the students to build on. I set up my lessons to build on the information provided in the previous lesson. In my future development I hope to link previous video and vocabulary into later lessons for students to be able to refer back to them in an easier fashion.
I am very excited to use this course with my students! I think it is a wonderful environment for students, to learn, create, and reflect.