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InstructureCon 2016 Round 2: The Wrath of Con



Canvas released another batch of session videos from InstructureCon 2016. I've watched 13 more sessions and there are so many great videos that speak to different roles in Canvas.  The videos I choose speak to my experience as an instructor. You can find all my favorites so far in this playlist. To find descriptions of my favorite volume 1 videos, go to my previous post.



Hit the Bullseye with On-Target Curriculum Design
KC Testerman Commonwealth Charter Academy - K12
Courtney Kofeldt Pennsylvania Leadership Charter School - K12

KC and Courtney walk you through their innovative way of designing lesson packages. The have built a predictable structure for students that allows for maximum personalization for instruction. It is great because the student experience moves away from constant scrolling to a turning the page experience. This is great for all Canvas experiences especially mobile. their design represents an empathetic view for the student experience not simply what is easiest from the teacher perspective.


Each lesson package has distinct components which can be customized if needed:
  1. Standards - This is to let students know where they should be at the end.
  2. Activating strategy - Think of this as the instructional hook
  3. Key terms/connections - Sometimes this includes the use of tools like Quizzlet.
  4. Instruction - This is the bulk of the instruction and can be customized to meet the needs of students
  5. Summarizing - The focus here is to put all the pieces together
  6. Closure - This is the summative activity intended to bring all the pieces together. Again, this is where personalization can occur.



Be sure to take a look at their sample course with all it's fabulous resources including:

  • Templates
  • Overview of the Lesson Package Design
  • Example Lesson Package - you really need to look at it to see how different this is for students








Quizzes.Next: Modern Quizzing in Canvas
Jason Sparks Instructure - HigherEd & K12

Jason introduces the modern quiz engine in Canvas.  It is still in trial/beta.  I look forward to it making it's way to our Canvas instance. This is a ground up redesign of quiz engine. Why a redesign?
  • Modernization - meeting open source standards and making it scalable to high numbers of questions and users
  • Simplicity - Address what is good now and find where to innovate.
  • Elegance - What it to be a pleasant user experience on both ends.

In the video you'll get to see Quizzes 2
From the teacher side It’s Fresh and so Clean. You have to see this. Teachers can easily see the flow of a quiz on the sidebar and drag and drop questions easily. From the student sign, students can jump forward and back to questions simply via a sidebar while seeing the quiz in the main frame. The quiz appearance is so much cleaner than before during the quiz and in feedback.

What's next for Quizzes? Vary points by answer, align individual outcomes to individual  questions (YES!),  shuffle MC answers with lock, open ended item without the ability for grading notes, Hot Spot question students select part of image, Likert Scale questions, Scientific Notation answers, Advanced page views with content on one side and questions on the other (no scrolling up and down between diagrams and questions!), question tags for easy discovery, find questions based on difficulty level of past performance, even better moderation features that give teachers so much more personalized controls, and outcome aligned results in quiz statistics. 

There are also advances coming to the mobile interface for quiz builder for teachers and quiz taker for students. 

The biggest thing that I saw coming is PRINTING in properly formatted text not a browser window view. As a teacher who firmly believes in Universal Design for Learning, students engage with content in different ways. 







PLC’s out of sync? Need a good CFA to increase your SLO’s?
Dave Anderson Mount Logan Middle School - K12


I am a teacher in a district that is firmly rooted in PLC's and SLO's so this session peaked my interest. The process of using Canvas as a way to track Student Learning Outcomes. By creating outcomes and aligning them to assignments.  These work within a Professional Learning Community because the same outcomes can be shared by all teachers in the PLC.  So teachers in the same PLC can track the same SLO data over time.

Dave walks through the process of going from standards to designing outcomes in Canvas, tying those outcomes to assignment rubrics, and how admins can group teacher into sub-accounts to share common outcomes.



Canvas just uploaded over 30 new session in the last day.  The playlist I've made is up to 66 sessions and I've only watched half. So, I'll be back.

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