Moodle provides a rich array of interactive formats that fit practically every instructional need and subject matter. But how does it fare in tools that let creators’ minds run wild and help them polish an idea into a professional-grade learning solution? Recent announcements regarding third-party tools and plugins signal that the Moodleverse is catering to the demand of “envisioning,” “canvassing,” and even “design thinking” tools within Moodle. While not always expressly designed for this purpose, these tools can prove to be valuable solutions that keep it all inside one platform, facilitating collaboration and fine-tuning, elementary aspects of what you could call “Lean Learning” or “Lean Instructional Design.” If anything, they suggest design tools are promising development territory in Moodle and similarly featured LMS-based learning organizations.
Paradiso’s Interactive Tools
Customer of Paradiso’s LMS solutions have access to a five-type interactive content creation tool, susceptible of being used as drawing boards while capable of delivering high-end interactive products. Currently, Interactive Tools offers Interactive Videos, Interactive Presentations, Multiple-Choice Questions, Guess-the-Answer games, and Board Games.
Through the tool, Interactive Videos can become guides to enrich individual or group lessons. Instructors can record themselves during a lesson and, using the tool, they can review it and add content that supports inquisitiveness and engagement. Great examples are pause questions —the tool supports several of Moodle’s question types— for a quick end-of-section recap or supporting resources in the form of files or web addresses.
Similarly, the Interactive Presentation gives designers a set of canvasses in the form of slides. Each slide can contain rich elements, including videos. Which one is better? It depends on your content strategy: Do you have a video that articulates a whole lesson (fitting for the Interactive Video format) or an argumentative line made of several videos or pieces of content (for which Interactive Presentation suits best)?
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H5P: Documentation, Timeline
H5P supports all of the above solutions with similar features, in addition to a few others. Regarding ideation tools, two content types come to mind: Timeline and Documentation. Of course, H5P’s possibilities and impacts are seemingly endless.
The Timeline content type offers yet another way to arrange and structure a lesson, perhaps with a visual emphasis on a “storyline” or a narrative sequence of content. It is perfect, of course, for linear history subjects, but it can prove flexible enough for almost any topic.
The Documentation Tool content type is a rather curious one, as it does not appear to depend on an interactive format, but rather it seeks to make a plain and often unavoidable format more interactive to make and use. It is ideal for statement- or charter-based syllabi (a commonality across multilateral entities and NGOs) but can easily deploy resources for individual lessons. It includes boilerplate sections for easy navigation. ■
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