From February 13-15, 2013, members of the Centre for Instructional Development (CID) attended the Moodle Moot Canada 2013 conference in Vancouver.
The CID and the DL Support team attended a variety of educational and technical sessions at this stimulating two and a half day conference. (Many attendees tweeted out URLs, notes and quotes using the hashtag #mootca13.)
Session: Moodle Development Best Practices – Justin Filip
Justin Filip is the Manager of Software Development for Remote Learner Canada (http://www.remote-learner.ca), an official Moodle Partner. Remote Learner builds custom solutions for Moodle clients, and in particular, integrates Moodle with other systems or products.
In this session, Justin covered:
- Overview of Moodle plugin systems and available APIs
- Working with the Moodle Tracker; Peer review process
- Maintaining a custom plugin using GitHub
(Templates for Activity modules are available there.)
- Submitting core patches and bug fixes to Moodle HQ
- Accessing Moodle Developer Docs at moodledocs.org
- Discussed using Selenium to do automated browser testing
Plenary: The Business of Social Learning – Bradley Shende
Bradley Shende is the Founder and CEO of M2O Digital Agency, as well as Global TV’s resident Technology Commentator. At Moodle Moot Canada 2013, he spread his passion for technology’s influence on our daily lives. In addition to inspiring international audiences as a keynote speaker, his infectious content stimulates his audiences to embrace a future where technology is understood, accessible and fun.
He touched on our multicultural society and the related diversity in information and education by relating them to his own diversity: His Father was from Trinidad, and studied Medicine in Winnipeg. His Mother, a native Winnipegger, spotted him at a social event, and the rest is history. Bradley feels that his parents were early adopters of globalism the importance of shared connections.
Bradley’s number one technology tip: “Just click things.” Don’t be afraid to click things and play with gadgets.
His analogy for crowd-sourcing in Twitter: “It’s like having a group of people together in one room. Write a question on piece of paper and pass it around. When the paper came back, you’ll have some great answers to your initial question.”
Bradley proceeded to rouse his crowd to action, getting everyone on their feet to take part in a meme from YouTube:
Moodle Moot Canada 2013 Does “The Harlem Shake”:
What has changed for our generation, or our children’s generation? Touchscreens have radically changed our expectations of what media can do and how we expect to access it. Bradley told a story of how when surfing the Sesame Street website on his laptop, how his 2-yr-old son (who was more familiar with using his Dad’s iPad) wondered why Elmo was “broken” because there was no touch-screen response on the laptop’s screen.
We (as a culture) have changed the input method – no longer strictly text-based papers or essays – and we’ve changed the way information is sourced. Wikipedia has grown larger in a few years than Encyclopedia Britannica did over hundreds of years.
The “Shift has Happened” video:
This video challenges us all to imagine the future. and as educators ask ourselves the question “Am I preparing students for jobs that do not yet exist, or for jobs that will no longer exist by the time they’re trained?”
Other Observations from Bradley Shende:
- Increasing user-generated content leads to increased-self publishing and self-curation.
- “Gamification”: Kids are bored, and often seek novelty. It’s important to challenge yourself, think creatively, and to network.
- Social Media can transform students from individual silos of knowledge into connected nodes.
Bradley closed with some inspiring suggestions:
Reconnect the soul of education to the world.
See through the eyes of a child. That’s knowledge.
We all need to become Learners, together.