Shanghai American School
Virtual Learning Environments (VLE), while extensively used at the university level for a number of years to offer distance learning
courses for those not in attendance on university campuses, are becoming more and more prevalent in K-12 schools world-wide as a
supplement to what occurs in standard classrooms. Moodle is an open source virtual learning environment designed using sound
pedagogical principles, to help educators create effective online learning communities. It was first developed by an Australian educator,
Martin Dougiamas in 1999 but has grown to a development team of over 1,000.
In a world of online wikis, blogs and other web 2.0 tools, Moodle has become a mainstay tool for educational institutions because of its
large array of specific learning activities and modules not found in other applications. These include, among others things, uploading
assignments with time cutoffs, glossaries, discussion forums, live chats, email sending, wikis for group document creating, online
quizzing and survey tools. With the advent of 1:1 laptop programs, Moodle has increased in popularity due it its ability to provide quick
access to course content from student laptops in classrooms while still providing the security of login credentials. Additionally, it is now
possible to purchase entire Moodle courses for a broad range of academic subjects to be installed on local and remote Moodle servers.
While Moodle has competition from other VLEs such as Blackboard, its popularity, in part, also comes from its free initial cost and
ability to be installed anywhere with minimal human and hardware support requirements.
The successful implementation of this 1-year cyclical plan will require supervision, organization, planning, coordination,
communication, research, and support between administrators, teachers, technology integration specialists and technology support staff.
Page 1 of 3
Getting Started Implementing Progressing Expanding
(Quarter 1) (Quarter 2) (Quarter 3) (Quarter 4)
Teachers are expected to Teachers are expected to Teachers are expected to Teachers are expected to
learn about virtual learn about and experiment with and implement and expand
learning environments experiment with basic begin to implement use of all Moodle
Moodle functions. Moodle activities. activities.
Introduction to the how
virtual learning Launching Workshop Launching Workshop Launching Workshop
environments can be Logging in Adding resources vs Setting up online
used to supplement adding activities. survey (Questionnaire)
what occurs in the Editing course setting.
classroom. Linking to a pre-made Creating collaborative
Creating Moodle files such as MS Word documents with the
Providing staff with Accounts files and external Moodle wiki module.
samples of completed URLs.
courses to show Assigning Roles to the Creating and using
Moodle’s capabilities. courses.(students or Creating a Moodle Moodle quizzing for
teachers added) directory to distribute online assessment.
Direct teaching staff to content.
the uploaded online Changing themes Assessment
Moodle demo course: Creating and using (common, ongoing)
http://sasoc.saschina.or Adding & deleting Moodle forum for
g/course/view.php?id= course blocks online discussions Survey staff on
190 Moodle use on an
Becoming familiar Customizing blocks on annual basis.
Discuss the importance with course settings. course main pages.
of online virtual (Course format, Adding text and Utilize web server
learning environments starting date, graphics. statistics program for
for future academic enrollment key) hard data on hits and
purposes. Adding Assignments usage.
Setting up Moodle with students
Glossaries’. uploading files.