The Pocket Scientist has a new Pocket

According to the wordnetweb the definition of pocket is ” a small pouch inside a garment for carrying small articles.” I find this to be a good analogy for this Learning platform that is being created for this website. The garment is the original WordPress website that was set up. In this garment are many pockets, the blog page, the front page, and now the Learning Management system. Each of these pockets carry numerous “small articles”.

Although I am just beginning to place articles into the depths of these pockets, I am  looking forward to what others that visit the Pocket Scientist might discover when they explore the various Pocket articles. In the new Moodle program I have been able to set up a course, including a wiki and  some fundamental information. I am still learning how to set it up so that I might offer both free courses and courses which will be available for a nominal fee. There are so many choices for course topics I am having a hard time settling down on what to place in the pocket first.

I would also like to add a section for podcasts and vodcasts, a discussion forum and a more customizedtheme. I have started looking into the Moodle site for additional plugins that might make my site more unique. Through this research I began looking at other Learning Management Systems just to see how Moodle fit into the current information. A good resource is the LMS Fieldguide found at www.astd.org/NR/rdonlyres/…3B91…/LMS_fieldguide_20091.pdf.

I have been using a Learning Management System called Switched on Schoolhouse.  This program was produced by Alpha Omega Publications and is a comprehensive Bible based curriculum that offers computer based learning for grades 3-12.  The program uses 3-D animation, videos and other forms of multimedia.  The students that I have do very well with the program and I find it extremely easy to use.

So what do I do next. First, I need to establish my login settings, my desire is to have a Front page open to anyone, but in order to see the courses you will need to login by establishing an account. I would like to use that to be able to develop an email base from which to send out notification of new course material as it comes available. All the courses will be stand alone and so will not need to have a prerequisite course.

The future purpose of the Moodle  site will be to provide science courses for three specific groups of students.  The first set of courses will be for  homeschool parents to use to enrich their children’s existing science requirements.  The second group would be   students that would like to increase their knowledge in  the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.  The last group of  I would like to offer courses to would be to those lifelong learners that are interested in furthering their knowledge on specific science related topics.

References:

Ellis, Ryann, K. (2009). Field Guide to Learning Management Systems.
     Learning Circuits. American Society for Training and Development.
     Retrieved from http://www.astd.org/NR/rdonlyres/12ECDB99-3B91-403E
     -9B15-7E597444645D/23395/LMS_fieldguide_20091.pd
Learn,Anytime,Anywhere.(2010)[Image] Google images. Retrieved from www.Australia.edu.

2 Comments

  • Hi Elizabeth,

    I am also experimenting and trying to figure out the best way to give students access to my site. I feel this is an underestimated element in the LMS in that you don’t want to make the process too difficult and turn users away in frustration.

    I like how you have segmented your prospective audience. I think the home schooled children is a group that may be often overlooked. I also like how you are appealing to “life-long learners” that simply want to enhance their knowledge. I feel this is another group that although they may not be traditional students, still have much to offer in regards to dialogue and collaboration.

  • Michelle Davis says:

    Elizabeth, your site has so much good information on it. I am interested in your idea of offering courses both for free and for a nominal fee. I wonder if Moodle has the capacity, or if one would just charge for a particular course, and then enroll the student?

    Thank you for posting the LMS field guide. I believe that will be a very useful resource going forward.
    Michelle

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