I remember my first introduction to an LMS (not Canvas!) as a primary school teacher. Not only did the product appear to be clunky but I found it difficult to see the purpose of using it. Much time was spent wrestling with it and making a dogs breakfast of it all. It wasn’t until I finally shared the product of my hours of frustration with the class that the real purpose started to evolve. They wanted to use it, offered suggestions to improve it, demanded updates and got their families involved. It was then I realised that I wasn’t going to be the slave of the LMS, it was going to work for me – and for the kids.
Each new year I would begin with a clean slate and rebuild my LMS space. The students were encouraged to share ideas on what could be included. I became braver with what was tackled and the students kept demanding more and more until the LMS naturally became a living extension of our classroom, extending to the students homes and beyond. Laura has many way that she personalises her LMS space and makes it hum. Check her out some time.
Now the Canvas adventure has begun in our state and a new wave of teachers will be going through the same process of discovering their purpose of using this more intuitive LMS. I only hope they use it to work for them and don’t feel they have to be a slave to the technology. I am particularly keen to see how K-12 and K-6 will be using Canvas to work for them.