Welcome to a new semester of The Teaching Hub! This weekly blog post is here to dole out tips, ideas, and important information about teaching at Fleming College in measurable, timely chunks throughout the semester. We hope you enjoy it enough to check in every week, and maybe even get involved in sharing your ideas. This week we’re looking backward at last week’s Teaching & Learning Day, and forward to all the teaching & development about to happen over the next couple of months. Let’s do it!
Although the Spring Teaching and Learning Day (T&L Day) was last week, we hope you are still energized from all the learning, eating, sharing, and laughing that we did together!!
At the close of the day, Katrina Van Osch-Saxon and Brian Saxon shared their expertise with us as they demonstrated the “Water Boil” challenge that is part of the Loggersports competition. You can check out their demonstration by watching this video:
We felt that their demonstration was a great way to wrap up the day, as did faculty member and new fan of the Water Boil challenge, Nick Stone, who had this to say:
The water boil loggersports activity at the end of the Fleming College Spring Teaching and Learning day was more than just a bit of fun; it actually showcased the power of good instruction through demonstration. The water boil demonstration was thoughtfully planned and even included some lovely husband-and-wife banter, which made the task seem less intimidating and more fun. The demonstration itself provided enough information that the small groups were able to carry out the majority of the task without any difficulty. It also allowed the instructors to spend more time helping the participants refine the skills they were exposed to, which involved the instructors coaching teams with technique tips and safety concepts.
You can also access all of the information, presentations, and resources from T&L Day on our website!
D2L Thing of the Week
Faculty D2L Level One: The D2L Apprentice.
Do you want any or all of these three things to happen for only 20 minutes of your time?
Positive feedback that will make you feel a good feeling.
A shiny (digital) badge that you will cherish forever.
A bit of D2L know-how and the chance to see it from a student’s perspective.
Okay! You can self-register for Faculty D2L Level Onehere, in the Help & Information Widget (yellow header, right-hand side, scroll ⇓).
Non-D2L Thing of the Week
Collaborative Note-Taking. Click on this tweet for the whole sordid tale.
I learned today that a group of students used a Google doc to take lecture notes– they all took notes simultaneously in a collective file.
Those sneaky students! Collaborating together right under our noses! Creating notes from each class for the benefit of everyone! BRILLIANT! We have created a Co-Curricular Record position for students to take a leadership role in this task. If you would be so kind as to share this idea with your students, please do! Please have interested students contact us directly if they want to do it, at LDSTeam@flemingcollege.ca
Gone in 60 Seconds, College Department Edition
Would you like to know more about some of the other departments the College has, via videos with low production value? But not so much that you wouldn’t be willing to spend more than a minute doing so? Well, you’re in luck! Check out the Gone in 60 Seconds Videos, where we have posted 60-second videos of various college departments telling you what they do for faculty. Each week in this section of the Teaching Hub, we will delve a little deeper into one of the various departments and what they are willing to do for faculty.
Next week there will be a bunch of students showing up here at the college. They are a very important part of the college experience. Maybe they are even our raison d’être. They are so important to us here that many events and supports have been put in place to make sure they have a great start. These events can be categorized in your mind as Student Orientation. And what are the details of these events, you may ask? Well, here they are, we may answer.
Interested in accessibility? Want to learn about the latest in adaptive technologies, A.O.D.A. standards, inclusive design, and more? Check out the 2017 Accessibility Conference: Becoming a Catalyst for Inclusion, hosted by the University of Guelph on May 30th and 31st, with a one day pre-conference option on May 29th.
If you’re interested in going, fill out the application here. 1-2 people will be sponsored to attend. The only price is your contribution to the deliverables of A.O.D.A. for Academics Working Group work.
This section is for following up on discussions that previous posts may have generated. As an example, Matt Ryan was one of the attendees of the Creative Commons Global Summit that we previewed in a Winter 2017 PD section. He wrote this lovely little reflection on his experience. Thanks for sharing, Matt!
Thanks for the fun idea, Lonnie! This issue of The Teaching Hub includes the ‘best of’ for each category from Fall 2016, as voted on by people who don’t know any better. Ties were broken via sumo wrestling. Included are runners-up (The Penultimates) and then winners (The Ultimates) and a few Side Awards for good measure. Please direct any disbelief/discontentment at the results to @pancakes_lonnie.
The Engaging Teaching category is used to give teachers some new or used ideas for engaging learning activities as well as to give faculty a chance to share what they are doing/thinking about in their teaching. The runner up & the winner for this category both come from faculty sharing what they do. It seems the Academy of Teaching Hub Voters thought that was pretty awesome. Congrats to Amanda and George!
Runner up: Amanda Mushynski’s ‘Here comes the Blog’ from Week 12
Once in a while, the world is kind enough to give us worthy sequels like The Dark Knight, The Empire Strikes Back, and Hamlet 2. Today is another one of those days. We are proud to debut a second edition to Speakers Corner! You may have seen the original, by George Fogarasi, released back in 2016. Well, the sequel is coming to you from Amanda Mushynski of the PharmTech program and she is going to take you on an adventure into the world of Open Learning Communities through blogging. We’ve already read and enjoyed the article immensely ourselves, so we’re going to go watch Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, but go ahead and check it out to see if the exciting things PharmTech are doing could work for you (and even see some of the great work the students are doing). Check out Here Comes the BLOG!
Winner: George Fogarasi’s Digital Dance from Week 10
This week’s special episode of Engaging Teaching has a guest speaker! And by speaker, we mean that our guest speaker has written an article for us using digital tools that include a keyboard and a Word document. So it’s almost like he is speaking to us through the written word, like a writer! Anyway, our guest speaker this week is none other than George Fogarasi! George imparts concepts, skills, and ideas to students in a number of General Arts and Science courses. If you ever get the chance to have a chat with him, try not to let his enthusiasm and passion about just about anything rub off on you. I dare you! We asked George to speak to us, through writing down words, about Digital Pedagogy. He came back to us with a Digital Dance. Check it out, it’s great.
The Learning Technology section is used to tell you about digital tools, old and new, and some ways that you may be able to use them in your teaching.
Runner up: Faculty D2L Level 2 from Week 3
We’ve heard your feedback, and are proud to announce Faculty D2L Level Two is NOW available…
In this mastery-level course you will:
Spend time thinking and learning about new ways to create and present content in your course pages;
Learn and try out the new Virtual Classroom tool and other communication tools; and
Learn about rubrics, and badges, and awards… oh my!
You can self-register for Level TWO on D2L, in the Help and Information Widget (yellow-header, right-hand side, scroll ⇓).
Winner: Twitter Blog Combo Package from Week 12 (in Course Outline Format)
Course Title: The Twitter-Blog Learning Community Combo Package
Course Hours: 0.02 Pre-requisite: The ‘Here Comes The BLOG‘ article on Open Learning Communities Amanda Mushynski wrote that we just told you about in the previous section.
Learning Outcomes: Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:
Consider using some of the ideas that Amanda has used to build learning community.
Learning Resources: To be honest, this fake course outline is the learning resource itself.
Assessment Summary: Learning Community Development Plan (100%). Please email it to email@example.com for feedback within the hour (no less than 50 pages)
Learning Plan: So just like, read the article and think about it and let it take you down any road you wish. You can contact Amanda or us if you’d like to try something and need some help!
Course Fee: $5 cash money discreetly slipped under the door of C1203.8
Policies & Procedures
The Policy & Procedures section is the timeliest of sections, as we try to pick the most pertinent college policy or procedure for that week to share to you. Because really, how much policy and or procedure can you really take at one time? Small doses are best.
Runner Up: Copyright from week 9
In honour of the Library, we have foregone the written word to provide you with a video interview about copyright policy. Turn up your volume because the camera-person who shot this video is a hack. And turn on the closed captioning. That helps.
We’re playing fast and loose with the concept of a policy this week, because it is not a policy as much as it’s a suggested cool thing to do. It does involve procedure, so there’s that! This week we want to talk about attribution. Now first, let’s get trivial details like an explanation out of the way: By attribution, we mean that when you’re looking for (Creative Commons properly licensed) photos and stuff to add to your course pages (and other online spaces), you should be cool about it and give attribution. As in tell us where you got the picture so the artist gets some cred and feels good about themselves for contributing to a greater world.
Here’s an example: At our Fall Teaching & Learning Day, we wanted to sort people into groups of four for an active learning activity. We Photoshopped famous active learner Judith Limkilde into various scenes. From there we created simple puzzles and gave everyone one piece so people could find each other and put it together to form a group. All images were found through Creative Commons Search and then used this flickr CC attribution helper tool (which saves this all from being a huge pain in the behind) to add attribution to the images, as you can see here. Now everyone is happy! Judith gets to do all these great activities, and the original photographers get the credit they deserve.
The College Department of the Week section is used for two things:
To let faculty know what various college departments can do for them &
To make up a fake battle-of-the-week that never really happened to determine the winners.
Side Award: best fake department of the week contest-The Battle of the Ska Bands from Week 5
This week, we held a battle of the ska bands for the glory of being the Teaching Hub Department of the Week. The Library’s house band, The Mighty Mighty Bosstomes, led by David Luinstra, brought down the house with their rendition of “Bad in Plaid.”
Runner up Department of The Week: IT Service Desk from Week 4
Winner of The Department of The Week Cage Match is the IT Service Desk! Check out this documentary directed by Alana Callan and starring Rick Robinson. Rick tells Alana how they are truly here for everyone.
Winner: Academic Operations and the Course Outline Due Date from week 12
In this week’s department of the week contest, we actually figured out how to send people into The Grid to have one of those Light-Cycle battles like in Tron. To date, Academic Operations is the only department to have made it back out. We’re sure the others are okay… While we wait and hope for the others to return from their digital nightmares, Academic Operations wanted us to give you a Pop Quiz! Here we go!
What do these 3 important events have in common?
1901 – Walt Disney was born
1933 – United States ends Prohibition with the ratification of the 21st Amendment
2016 – Winter course outlines are due at Fleming College
Ding ding ding! These things all happen on December 5th! That’s right folks, your course outlines for the winter semester are due on December 5th. If you have questions about your course outlines, check out the How-to Guides and the FAQ from Academic Operations. Also, please if you know how to do a Human Grid Extraction, let us know.
Services for Students
The Services for Students section is all about trickle-down. We let you know about something the students might want to know about, and hope that you in turn let them know about it. It’s a reverse pyramid scheme, or something.
Runner up: Text to Speech from Week 5
listen to this video while you read along to this week’s Services for Students section
Do you want to listen to, instead of read, your Microsoft Word documents? Of course you do (or you at least want to try it out)! It’s fun, easy, and free!
Create a word document. We recommend putting funny phrases into it to practice and make yourself laugh. Or use an actual document. You pick. Check out this how-to video or the Accessibility Centre tip sheets to learn more about making a Word document accessible to screen readers.
Add Speak to your Word quick access toolbar. Here are step-by-step instructions. Then highlight the words you want to read and get ready to listen to all the funny stuff you wrote in the Word document.
Spread the word that text-to-speech software is the coolest! Share it with your students, your colleagues, your neighbours, and especially your barista.
Disclaimer: We know the Microsoft reader voice isn’t everyone’s cup of tea at first, but hey, it might just grow on you. Do you have other tech you use for text-to-speech? Share please!
Winner: Student Life Tab from Week 6
According to Google, a portal is “a doorway, gate, or entrance, especially a large and elaborate one.” Fleming College originally wanted to call its portal The Especially Large and Elaborate Entrance, but it just didn’t quite stick. This week in the Services for Students section, we want to highlight how the portal has recently become more especially awesome and grand.
Student Services has put together a snazzy new Student Life tab in the portal to help students (and faculty and staff!) find the right resources when they need them.
Clicking on the pretty icons gives you a list of available resources, and there’s even a link for staff-only resources, including the CCR. Now, to give credence to the CCR, we need to be clear that it is not the doo-doo-doo looking out your backdoor kind of CCR, but the Co-Curricular Record kind of CCR. Both CCRs are awesome. Check out Fleming’s CCR in the Student Life Portal while listening to the other CCR, linked below from their verified Youtube account.
The Professional Development section is to share with you things you can do to develop in a professional way. These opportunities can be big or small or even kind of medium sized.
Runner Up: Top Ten Conferences from Week 8
This post was from week 8 was moved to our department site to keep forever and ever. Check out the Top Ten Conferences we thought you might be interested in!
Winner: UDL comes alive from Week 10
UDL Comes Alive
This zombie-reminiscent headline might seem like it belongs back in our “Spooky” edition, but it’s really just the title of the Universal Design for Learning presentations held at George Brown College during week 8. Several faculty members attended the Introduction to UDL session, while members of our very own LDS Team attended the UDL Presenters’ Academy, both hosted by CAST. Participants learned about how to address the learner variability in every classroom, and how to support students to become expert learners. Stay tuned for more from those who participated in the sessions…
For now, here’s Mary’s first attempt at a Storify (with thanks to Alana for the inspiration!), including some tweets (#UDLComesAlive) from that day: https://storify.com/maryoverholt/getting-started
The Chatter section is normally used to beg you, the reader, to get involved by commenting or sharing some teachy-type stuff with us. This week, we’re using it for more silly awards.
Side Award: Best Edition.
In week 5 we started to give some flavour to the editions.
Runner Up: The Bike is Upside Down Edition
Through the magic of Photoshop, we flipped the bike around and called it a day on naming that week’s post.
Winner: The Pumpkin Spice Edition
If they can have Pumpkin Spiced Mini-Wheats (which were kind of gross, btw) we can have a Pumpkin-Spiced blog post.
Side Award: Best beg for help
We unabashedly begged for your involvement in the Hub. Our favorite was the time we devoted a whole edition to begging in the Call for Help Edition in which we asked for help with Open Faculty Development Textbook Project
Side Award: Best comment
We love it when people comment on our posts, especially when the comment shares new ideas and insights. However, in the spirit of it being the end of the semester and brains are running out of thinking energy, here is the comment to which we have awarded the Best Comment Award:
What do we win – what do we win – is it chocolate???
Comment by ‘A’ left on November 28th
Side Award: Best heckle by Lonnie
Oh Lonnie, thorn in our side and wind beneath our wings. Here is our favorite Lonnie comment:
Would you like to share what you do in D2L with your Fleming colleagues? Do you want to see what others are doing to get some great ideas?
Let’s open D2L up a little bit so that we can see what can be done and riff off of each other’s ideas. Seeing each other’s good work can be inspiring and motivating. Working in a lonely silo is maybe not so much.
Sign up for the Fleming Course Share Registry to allow access to your courses. The more you share, the more will be shared to you. Once you are granted access, you will be able to see how other teachers have presented material, as well as learning activities and assessments. You may see some innovative ideas that you could use with your courses. You will not see any student information in your colleague’s courses. You will be enrolled in the role of ‘Sharing Buddy’
Next Tuesday, May the 3rd, we will be getting together for another Academic Retreat at the Sutherland Campus. The theme for the day is re-framing your perspective and will be focused on 3 streams:
Academic Council Updates
Culture and Community
Teaching and Learning With Engagement
The first two streams will be delivered through workshops and seminars at specific times and places. See session info here. The 3rd stream is taking the Wild West approach of a ‘Makerspace’. We will transform the cafeteria area into a place with many different, mostly DIY areas for creating things. This will hopefully do two things: put you back into the mindset of a student for a short period, and give you ideas and experience creating things for your courses. The point is to produce stuff during the time we have together. Hopefully stuff we can use!
Some of the things we are hoping will be created: contributions to our community of practice assignment bank, videos, GIFs, images, blog posts, games, chairs, flexible learning spaces, accessible documents, comics. You will also have the opportunity to retrain your brain! That rhymes so it’s good! And everything will be tweeted. We plan to be the Peterborough Twitter trend of the day. We will all be a part of history.
With that in mind, there is one thing we would really like to produce on that day with your help: Our next blog post. And we want that post to be a reflection on the day. So please, if you’re willing, come to the table that says Bloggy Bloggy Bloggy Blog (like the image below) and write a short paragraph reflecting on one of your retreat experiences (from any stream). We will collect those quotes/reflections into our next blog post so that we can all learn from each other. See you there!
Haha, just kidding about the 47. Every article about new technology seems to give you way too many reasons to use it and makes you feel silly for not already using it. We’ll give you just 3 reasons to think about using our new Game Based Learning Module in D2L. There’s probably more, but who has time for more than 3?
Performance Before Competence: No-Risk Practice. Students can engage with material on their own before you even formally teach it to them without risk. Or after. Or both!
Motivation through Rewards and Achievements. Answer a bunch of questions correctly? Here’s a funny little badge! Awesome I love it! Thanks! Give me more!
Social Motivation. Sometimes the competitive spirit kicks in and motivates you to climb that leader board. Kind of like the same excitement you get from a lot of likes on Facebook or retweets on Twitter. It’s weird, but it works!
So those are some reasons, here’s the thing: The D2L Game-Based Learning Tool! It lets you build games that can be embedded onto your course page.
On Monday, February 29th at The Academic Retreat, we will be holding a working session on how to use the GBL tool. We hope to see you there! If you won’t be able to make it, you’re NOT out of luck. We are happy to set up a time to meet with you to show you how to start creating.
In the meantime, here’s a list of the things to know about this tool
-The game is built in the GBL Admin Tool and then sent to your D2L Course Page
-You build a Game Map that has content and activities embedded into spots on the map. The example in the picture above uses the idea of a road trip through Ontario to stop at different habitats to learn and answer questions about those habitats.
-Your D2L Course Page will get some new widgets: The Game Map, My Player and the Course Feed
<-Students get to create their own avatar in the My Player Widget
Students will receive achievements/awards that you create in the Course Feed widget->
Starting right now, we’re going to tell the story of what we are working on with a weekly blog! We’ll keep the posts short, sweet and to the point. Well, sometimes we may ramble on, but only if it helps tell the story. Or if it’s funny. We will tell you about projects that we are working on and a little bit about about why and how we are aiming to enhance good learning design and teaching excellence. We’ll also tell you what kinds of technology we are working with on the projects.
For example, we are currently working on a Fleming College Course Design Framework, and we have a new infographic to represent it. Check it out below. An infographic is a visual representation of a process, concept, or a principle. You can create your own for your courses as an aid to help your students understand something. We created this one using Piktochart. They are fun to create because you get to choose funny pictures to represent ideas. Let us know if you’d like help creating an infographic for your course at LDSTeam@flemingcollege.ca
The Course Design Framework infographic below provides an overview of the Course Design process. We have more that dig deeper into the steps of Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation and Evaluation. Find them all on our website here. The status of these infographics should be set in your mind to ‘draft’ or ‘not yet officially approved by anyone’ but they are informative, so enjoy!