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ETEC 510 - Big Ideas in ELA Curriculum User Guide By: Scott, Katie, Evan and Michael


Our curriculum guide has been split up into 4 sections where each section aims to incorporate aspects of blended learning, tagging, creative media and participatory culture. The sections considered in our curriculum user guide include:

Course syllabus and project rationale Overview of Canvas LMS Activities and assessment Modular Design

Course syllabus and project rationale


It is an era of change for education in British Columbia, and with the rollout of the new B.C. curriculum, learning has become “personalized, flexible, and innovative” (B.C. Ministry of Education, n.d.). Educators are asked to rethink much of how they teach, from general frameworks and modules of learning, to specific technologies and literacies that help to support the 21st century student.

Our project aims to introduce elementary language arts teachers to one aspect of the “Know-Do-Understand” curriculum model adopted by the B.C. Ministry of Education in a way that promotes an understanding of the variety modern competencies and literacies that learners will need to develop in the 21st century. The “Big Ideas” inherent in the curriculum are the “generalizations [,] principles[, and] key concepts important in an area of learning” and “represent what students will understand at the completion of the curriculum for their grade” (B.C. Ministry of Education, n.d.).

“Know-Do-Understand” Curriculum Model. Source: ​ As our focus user

“Know-Do-Understand” Curriculum Model. Source:

As our focus user group, teachers will independently consider how the four featured “Big Ideas” are evident in their lives, will collaboratively discuss and devise ways to illuminate these ideas in their classrooms, and will innovatively utilize available technology to illustrate how this curriculum model can be transformative through the creation of authentic and meaningful learning artifacts.

Through the concepts, discussions, and activities presented in this course, we hope to emulate design elements of the new B.C. curriculum that are meant to support 21st century learning. These elements include - but are not limited to - learning environments that are collaborative, flexible, inquiry-based, and ICT enabled to help “develop the competencies required to use current and emerging technologies effectively in all aspects of their learning and life” (B.C. Ministry of Education, n.d.).

Course Syllabus

Module One - “Developing our understanding of how language works allows us to use it purposefully” Design Focus: Blended Learning Activity - Flipped Language Lesson

Module Two - “Exploring stories and other texts helps us understand ourselves and make connections to others and the world.” Activity: User provided content shared, tagged, and discussed (a la the Keyword activity we do); this could be thematic, in order to set up the activities in the next modules

Module Three - “Language and text can be a source of creativity and joy.”Design Focus: DIY and Creative Media / Content Authoring Activity: Create an artifact (story, video, slideshow, etc )

Module Four - “Exploring and sharing multiple perspectives extends our thinking” Design Focus: Participatory Culture in the Digital Age Activity: Peer review

Overview of Canvas LMS

of Canvas LMS Canvas ( ​ ​ ) Canvas Learning Management System (LMS) is an

Canvas Learning Management System (LMS) is an online shell for organizing course content, attendance, assignments, grades, announcements, and all of the other logistical tools necessary for delivering an online class. We chose Canvas due to its ease of use, its free license for educators and students, and comprehensive online support community.

Why use Canvas?

Canvas is a simple, reliable, mobile, and adaptable LMS that allows instructors to create customized courses that best suit their course design. Canvas online space will help facilitate student collaboration using the following tools internal and external to Canvas: synchronous and asynchronous chat, asynchronous discussion boards, collaborative word processing platforms (ie. Google Docs), YouTube videos for vlogs and recording presentations, blogs for sharing and reflecting on their experiences, and flash-card memory aid tools such as Memrise.

Canvas’ Features

•You can gather students work through online submissions

•Canvas quizzes give you the opportunity to provide online practice quizzes and class surveys quickly and easily

•Canvas modules allows you to organize content

•Activity Streams: Global and Course. a.Global Activity stream is part of the dashboard and provides recent activity for all courses. b.Course Activity stream is part of the course home page and shows recent activity for that specific course to keep everyone up to date on what has happened since they last logged in.

•Chat: The chat features provides synchronous video, audio and text communication between students that are enrolled in the course

•Collaborations: Allows instructors and students to create and edit documents, which can be accessed by the whole course roster, a subset of students or individual students

•Conferences: Allows students to interact with their classmates and instructor in real time using audio, video, desktop sharing and presentation tools. Students can also create and host their own conferences.

•Course statistics: Allows the instructor to monitor participation of students

•Discussion Forum: designed to facilitate informal communication between students in a course. Discussions can also be created as assignments for grading purposes. Students can also respond to information and graded conversation in the context of a group

•ePortfolios: allows students to showcase their best work to colleagues and prospective employers

Canvas’ Benefits

•Canvas can be used to help manage your course

•Content can be accessed from any devices with an internet connection

•Organize your resources into modules making resources like videos, images, self-paced activities, presentations, webquests accessible

•Assess quickly with SpeedGrader

Activities and assessment

The activities you will be asked to participate in during the course of this project will focus on the big ideas of the Grade 7 English Language Arts Curriculum. All activities are designed in hopes of leading to a more universal understanding of the Grade 7 ELA competencies. Each activity is proposed in a way that is meant to expand the users knowledge on participatory cultures, blended learning environments, DIY learning, multiliteracy and community of practice. Social interaction is also a large component of the activities within each module as our design project focuses on the constructivist learning approach. We also emphasize and reinforce the importance of the process of design in each of our activities through using a functional system, step-by-step instructions and a tutorial if need be. These facets of each activity are important to help the user imagine, create, play, share and reflect to their fullest potential during the course of each module. Most activities will take place at the end of each module as a cumulative review on concepts covered in that module regarding Grade 7 ELA big ideas.

There will be a variety of assessment tools provided to the user in this project. The first is a simple review and star-rating verification tool that will give those using our

resource the option to quickly and simply respond to how useful they find the information provided through the modules. The star-rating will serve as a quick visual pertaining to the overall effectiveness and the implementation potential of different lessons and activities in the Grade 7 ELA classroom. There will be a discussion forum for users to participate in regarding comprehension of the course content as it connects to the big ideas of the Grade 7 ELA curriculum. This will be provided at the end of each module with a prompted discussion question where users will be encouraged to reflect on their experience and learning. Our design team will monitor these discussions and comments to evaluate user feedback as well as discussion contributions between teachers/users.

Modular Design

Our project will follow the same structure as the Curriculum itself (drilling down from big ideas, into activities and information). The overview will include an outline of our project:

The overview will include an outline of our project: If you click on the Outline you

If you click on the Outline you will see the title and activities that will be included in each:

see the title and activities that will be included in each: Then as you continue to

Then as you continue to progress within the project you will see the big ideas clearly listed as they are the basis for each module:

Exploring an individual module, it is the intention of this project to make things as

Exploring an individual module, it is the intention of this project to make things as hands on as possible and include many different formative activities for teachers to engage with:

different formative activities for teachers to engage with: The flow of the project will be very

The flow of the project will be very intuitive and structured so students can simply click the next button. Although the modules will have different activities they will follow a similar structure and use the built in features of the LMS to give feedback to the users and give opportunities to apply and extend their learning.

Although the intention was to create the modules using the Canvas LMS, we were unable to gain teacher access which ultimately limited us in using a website to build our design project. Weebly is the platform we decided to host our project on and the following things should be taken into consideration while working through the modules.

The modules are laid out very similarly to how they would look on Canvas. To work through the modules, follow the following steps:

1. Start on the Home page

2. Work your way through the modules by clicking the tab at the bottom of each page


Post in the Padlet discussion forum at the end of each module to summarize your findings or experiences. *Remember, the real discussions would take place through Canvas.

5. Assignment submissions and group pages would similarly be enabled through Canvas.


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