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Beginning the Year with Canvas

There are several things you will want to do with Canvas as you begin the school year. Here are a few the WCPSS encourages teachers to implement. If you need any support with Canvas contact myself or Mike Meehan.

  • Update Home Page in Canvas with teacher photo, contact information, course schedule and other important resources.
  • Publish course Syllabus (if applicable)
  • Support families to connect via Parent Observer Account Creation.
  • Share an Announcement to students and families.
  • Organize Course Content in Modules and publish as needed.
  • Post weekly updates and resources that support learning objectives for students.
  • Please be sure to review these Canvas ABCs Troubleshooting tips as many of them are frequent issues around the beginning of the school year.  Reach out to Laura or Katie if you need more information or clarification! 

Canvas Chat: Submission Types

Canvas allows for students to submit a variety of submission types. Teachers can select online submission as the type of submission. This then allows the teacher to select text entry, website URL, media recordings, students, annotation, or file upload. If you select file upload your students will then be able to submit an image of their work.

This Canvas Chat features Mrs. Withers. She teaches at Apex Friendship Middle School and implements a variety of blended learning strategies. Her students share how they are able to access their assignments in Canvas. The assignments provide students with instructions, samples, demonstration videos, and rubrics. Mrs. Withers delivers instruction to her students both whole group style and by using flipped videos she has created. Students enjoy the videos because they can watch them as they work on their art assignments. The students also share how the enjoy and benefit from the feedback that Mrs. Wither’s provides them through Canvas.

If you would like to be featured in a Canvas Chat or know someone that is an experienced Canvas user, contact me for details.

Blended Learning with Canvas & Flipped Instruction

What is Blended Learning Links to an external site.? We hear about it, we have a course about it, but what does it look like? There are several definitions and models that you can explore to get a better idea of how to implement Blended Learning. The WCPSS promotes Blended Learning, but my personal opinion is that we are not adhering to the traditional definition that states some work is done online outside of school. In our district, we blend the physical environment with the digital in the school.  The question is it equitable to require students to engage in online learning outside of the school campus. For example, what about students that do not have internet access at home? 

The following video demonstrates what Blended Learning looks like when using Flipped Instruction. There are several Blended Learning models and flipped learning is one of them. Flipped learning requires students to watch videos at home and then they are discussed the next day in class. We do not utilize that model, instead we flip the delivery of instruction by providing various modalities. For example, instead of the teacher teaching a lesson to the whole class all at once using a teacher lead model. Flipped instruction uses a student lead approach. Students are provided the content and delivery of instruction in a variety of formats. Teachers can provide students with lessons in video, audio,images and text formats. 

Watch this brief video to gain a better understanding of Blended Learning

Tour of Canvas Interface

When new users first open Canvas they may not be clear about what they are looking at. This video provides new users a tour of Canvas’s interface. It will help you gain a basic understanding that will get you started with navigating in Canvas. We will provide you a step by step guide on what to do to get started. Feel free to skip this page if you are already a Canvas user.

Buckhorn Creek Teacher of the Year

Kristen Schaible was nominated as the teacher of the year for BCES 2021-2022 school year. This video demonstrates the type of teacher Kristen is and the culture she has created in her classroom.

Filming a video in this format is done with two camera angles and a lavalier microphone. I use two camera angles for interviews. It allows me to have one wide angle and one close up. I am also able to switch between camera angle during editing. If you need to film a TOY video, feel free to contact me and I can share with you my process and offer to consult on your project.

VLOG Experiment

I am developing a course on shooting videos with smart phones. I film all of my footage with DSLR cameras. I never really thought about using my phone as a camera that I would use in one of my films. I purchased FilmicPro and then filmed the following video with my phone.

A Collaborative Relationship

Classroom Support

The Wake County Public School System Digital Learning Coordinators work along side of teachers and students. We are often asked to explain what DLCs do. There are a wide variety of ways in which we support staff, teachers, and students. Our website houses our menu of support that outlines our work and it will also provide you with the contact information for your area DLCs.

Roles in the Relationship

I like to show stakeholders our work in action and what the relationship between a teacher and a DLC looks like. I communicate with cameras, microphones, computers, and software. The Mi Familia Proyecto vlog will give you an insight into the relationship between a teacher and a Digital Learning Coordinator. We each have various roles. The DLC perspective of teachers is that they are Subject Matter Experts of the content they teach and the DLCs are skilled at integrating technology into the curriculum, instruction, and learning experiences. We utilize several models and frameworks in our practice. TPAC is a framework that helps to illustrate these roles. I would encourage you to explore the framework. It is an accurate description of the intricate relationship DLCs develop with teachers they support. One unspoken norm is that teachers need to initiate the collaboration with their assigned area Digital Learning Coordinator. You can find and contact yours by visiting

Willow Spring High School
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