Summary of Learning

And that’s a wrap! Thanks to my EC&I 834 classmates for the feedback, camaraderie, and support over the semester.

Below is my Summary of Learning – I touch on the Bates continuum, adapting available programs to ‘create’ our own LMS, AI, and the importance of community.

Click to view my Summary of Learning, created in Canva!

Final Course Prototype

Hello EC&I 834 colleagues! Our course prototype was co-designed with my colleague Arkin Kauf and is based on the Saskatchewan Grade 7 Drama Outcomes.

In our blended and synchronous course, grade 7 students will learn about the elements of radio plays, how to create soundscapes, and how to use Foley sounds to create sound effects. They will also record, edit, and produce their own radio plays in small groups. The focus is not on writing skills so that they will use pre-written stories; however, they will edit and adapt the stories to use soundscapes, effects, and voice acting wherever possible.

Drama can be a daunting and less desirable subject for students, especially those who are anxious or lack self-confidence. Arkin and I wanted to create an opportunity for students to meaningfully participate in the subject in a way that would ease these anxieties and fears and allow for freedom of expression and creativity in a FUN way.

When developing and mapping out our A.D.D.I.E. Course Profile, we considered our student audience at the foundation of our course. Our previous blog post details our A.D.D.I.E. Course Profile.

The course creation process begins with our learning objectives of this blended and synchronous course. By the end of this course, we hope students will be able to:


  • Use drama elements, strategies, negotiation, and collaboration to help shape the direction of the drama and/or collective creation.


  • Express ideas about the importance of place (e.g., relationships to the land, local geology, region, urban/rural environments) in drama and/or collective creation.


  • Investigate improvisation using the voice, instruments, and a wide variety of sound sources from the natural and constructed environment.

ITSE Student Standards

Empowered Learner (Students leverage technology to take an active role in choosing, achieving, and demonstrating competency in their learning goals, informed by the learning sciences.)

Some important notes regarding our creation process are that many of our students are EAL learners. This course is meant to foster an environment that promotes language development while meeting Arts Education’s curricular outcomes. All but one of our students have access to technology at home, and Arkin and I are a part of the Connected Educator Program with Regina Catholic School Division (one-to-one device access per student), which allows for ample opportunities for this course to be successful.

We have used three platforms to execute our course prototype. The first was Microsoft Teams, which was used as the central hub to post assignments and hand-in areas, chat with students and teachers, monitor student progress, and provide feedback and assessment grades. This was considered as our Microsoft-based school division, which provides free access to teachers and students. Secondly, we used SeeSaw to foster and promote home-school connections. Students access some of the tasks on this platform, and it invites parents and guardians to view their children’s work to see their progress in the course. Thirdly, we used WeVideo which is a licensed and cloud-based platform that allows students to work in teams to upload, record, mix, splice, edit, and layer sounds. This is used to create their final product. Last, we used Lumi to create introductory videos for modules 1 and 2, and BBC Sound Effects to access thousands of audio files, which are safe and free to download.

We developed four modules in our course prototype and will use our school division’s four-point assessment scale to consistently assess and provide formative and summative feedback on assignments and tasks.

Here are links to other course prototype blogs that highlight our learning process and course development:

A.D.D.I.E with Ms. McLellan and Mr. Kauf

Using Seesaw and Microsoft Teams


Reflection on Feedback and Overall Accessibility

Finally, our finished product! We want to thank our EC&I 834 colleagues for their valuable feedback, which was used to reflect on and improve our course prototype for our students.

Please enjoy our course walkthrough.

**Note – if you would like to jump straight to the modules, they begin at 6:17**


AI as a Teaching Tool

Truthfully, I am brand new to the world of AI. I don’t use Alexa or Google Home, and haven’t played around with any ChatGPT or the platforms that make you into a really cool looking AI person. I do, however, have a good buddy of mine who has spent countless hours playing with the new AI options that some of our favourite platforms have to offer. She put together a whole folder filled with AI tools that will help the administrative and planning portions of job way easier and much less time consuming. A particularly cool one can be found in Canva, and it creates lessons, games, assessment tools… it felt like the possibilities were endless. I always do some sort of review game before a quiz or test, usually making it myself in Kahoot or Quizizz, but Canva will create a game seconds (disclaimer – I haven’t had the chance to try it yet, but my friend’s reviews were positive!). There is never enough planning or prep time, so any tool that will help create these resources is one that’s good in my books.

The video might be a bit long, but here is a tutorial filled with Canva AI magic!

AI as a Learning Opportunity

AI will naturally be a point of discussion in most classrooms at this point. As a connected educator, I use tech with my students everyday and towards the end of the 2023 school year, I started to become hyperaware of the fact that it would be easy for students to use ChatGPG to comeplete assignments and it would be just a negative option in classrooms. However, a classmate made an excellent point in our Discord chat that a lot of proper use of tech comes down to relationships in the best of times. Why would AI be any different? Ensuring students are submitting their own work still comes down to knowing my students, their strengths, and areas for improvement. It comes down to communicating when it is appropriate to use AI and when it isn’t.

Further, AI is another layer of teaching digital literacy. Being able to identify what is real/legitimate is a skill students need to develop. AI opens up conversation as to appropriate use, identifying AI images (check the hands!), the benefits, and the shortfalls. Avoiding it as if it is only meant to be a problem in classrooms means missed learning opportunities for everyone – AI is here to stay, we should embrace it!


Have you used AI with your students yet? How has it gone?


Reflection on Feedback and Overall Accessibility

Arkin and I continue our course prototype work toward our Arts Education lesson for our Grade 7 class, which ultimately involves having our students create a radio play.

Our course prototype design combines in-class instruction with digital components constructed with Lumi to contribute to an engaging and interactive introductory digital lesson for our students.

We presented our course shell to our class colleagues through Microsoft Word. We included our ADDIE to provide our reviewers with a detailed class descriptionEAL considerations, and a complete unit outline. We followed the ADDIE with our introductory lesson to Radio Plays (PowerPoint) and detailed modules (Curricular Outcomes, Activity Links, and Schedule) created by both of us. Finally, we concluded our shell by sharing our grading scale for reference. Although our course shell was not presented in a traditional Learning Management System (LMS) yet, we felt the organization and format we provided our reviewers with were sufficient for this first module. As we are both employees of the Regina Catholic School Division, we are working toward a finalized LMS created on Microsoft Teams…stay tuned!

The feedback we received from our colleagues during our Week 7 class and through the feedback comments was overwhelmingly positive and appreciated. Some of the commonalities among the feedback were well-constructed, easy to follow and use, student-centered, and age appropriate.

Because we hosted our course shell through the Microsoft Word document, it was suggested that we should have provided a bit of rationale and our ‘why’ for choosing to do so. It was also noted that although we used Microsoft Word, the document was clearaccessible, and appeared professional and polished. Another suggestion provided was to further our course interactions within the prototype. We acknowledge that we must further detail the SeeSaw and Teams interactions and further distinguish and outline classroom versus online interactions.

Some of the feedback we received regarding our course content is that the modules provide opportunities for differentiation and options for students. However, one of our Lumi modules presented challenges when our reviewers attempted to engage with the interactions based on the timing. The open-ended interactions didn’t allow the reviewer to type into the answer box. Something we will look at getting fixed and improving!

Overall, we are pleased to hear that our module was clear, considerate of the students we teach (as outlined in our ADDIE), and engaging for our learners. We will certainly take the feedback of fine-tuning some of our elements to improve our module.

When thinking about accessibility, we were cognizant of creating a course that met the needs of our diverse learners and created space for them to succeed. We have a lot of EAL students and designed a course that would both provide language learning opportunities and allow them to use their experience (for example, students do not write their own fairy tales but can use well-known ones or stories from their childhoods). While most of our students have access to technology at home, not everyone does; we created a plan to ensure those students do not miss out on opportunities (we utilized a program that can splice together recordings so students can record their own contributions to the project at school OR on their own time, and gives grace to absences or lack of tech at home; students do not need to be together to record, they need to collaborate when they can!).

Last week’s class had us reflecting on how our course could be adapted so students who are not permitted to use technology at school and/or at home could still meaningfully engage in our module. We are confident that we’ve created a course where the tech enhances the learning experience without being the sole learning provider. For instance, students can still create Foley sounds, show that they can identify spaces for Foley and soundscapes, and learn about radio plays without the technology component, and most importantly, they can still collaborate with their teammates while at school.



CLICK HERE to access my module on Lumi.

Arkin and I decided to both create introductory courses for our prototype. Lumi was a helpful tool for this, because it allows you to create interactive lessons and videos to quickly introduce new concepts.

For my module, I focused on introducing Foley artists and the art of creating sound effects. For our prototype, students will eventually make radio plays and will be responsible for creating their own Foley sounds; therefore, it is important for students to have an understanding of the world of Foley. Using an interactive video is an effective way to introduce this new concept (which, for the majority, ‘Foley’ is a new term entirely!) while also assessing understanding. Meanwhile, Arkin created a complementary lesson and introduced the elements of soundscapes, something that students will also incorporate into their final project.

Using Lumi, I was able to use our own grading scale for formative assessment. As students watch the video and answer the questions, their results show their grade on that set of questions; immediate feedback for students is known to be beneficial.

I used a ‘kick-off question’ where students make inferences – a skill we work on a lot in middle years ELA! – and used a combination of multiple choice and fill in the blank to reiterate important information from the video. These questions will help students remember this information as it will be a big part of their future project (e.g. the term ‘Foley artist,’ using unlikely objects to create everyday sounds, creativity involved in Foley artistry, and the uniqueness of the profession). 

There are also some accessibility features such as closed captions, translations, and allowance for spelling mistakes in fill in the blank questions. Generally, extra supports such as these are beneficial for all students; however, as identified in our ADDIE model, we have a large percentage of EAL students; these features would be especially helpful for them.


Pros and Cons of Lumi



  • Allows for immediate student feedback
  • Easy assessment for teachers and facilitators
  • Database to access lots of resources made by other educators
  • Shareable link for completed projects
  • Accessibility features to meet the needs of a variety of learners
  • Time consuming to create interactive resources
  • Limit on length of videos/size of files in the free version
  • Would work better for older students; while there are features conducive to younger grades, it would be more difficult for early learners to use this tool

Because I only made the one module, this pros/cons list is not extensive; it’s only what I found while working through for the first time. I have used platforms to create H5P content before, and I found Lumi much more difficult to use in comparison. However, the other platforms didn’t have nearly as many options nor accessibility features as Lumi.

Arkin and I look forward to feedback on our modules and to hear what others liked/didn’t like when they were working in Lumi!

Using Seesaw and Microsoft Teams

For our course prototype, Arkin and I are focusing on Drama 7, a subject that can be difficult to teach in a new and engaging way while also creating an environment where students can feel confident in leaving their comfort zone and expressing themselves. We decided that the blended model is a great approach, because it balances small group and face-to-face instruction with engaging technology. Students will have the opportunity to produce, mix, create, and edit radio plays, while also creating sound effects and soundscapes, and starring as the voice actors.

When building community in online and blended learning environments, establishing a plan for communication, feedback, and assessment are very important. Developing social presence where students can meaningfully interact in a trusting environment is also key in designing online community. We are using two programs, Seesaw and Microsoft Teams, to achieve this.

Seesaw will be used for formative assessment. We see many benefits of Seesaw, including:

  1. Instructors are able to provide immediate feedback via comments, teacher edits, ‘reaction’ stickers, or using the stylus tool (much like writing comments on paper assignments!). Students receive this feedback immediately, and can make the edits without deleting original work.
  2. There is an option to add ‘pages’ to assignments – this is a great feature, as it is another way to show progress and learning. It is similar to submitting multiple written drafts, where each draft shows improvement!
  3. Seesaw allows for a meaningful home/school connection. Parents and caregivers are able to interact, comment, and ‘like’ assignments, provide support, and stay up to date with their child’s assignment and progress.
  4. Instructors are able to send large group messages, which is especially helpful for due date reminders, communicating trends, or ensuring students are using the platform appropriately (i.e. “remember to save as draft so you don’t lose progress”)
  5. It is accessible at school or at home, and can be accessed either via browser or through an app.

Check out this short video to learn more about Seesaw

Microsoft Teams will be used for our summative assessment, and will be used as a communication tool. Like Seesaw, there are numerous benefits of Microsoft Teams in the blended learning model:

  1. Teachers can create chats for each group, which are monitored by the teacher. Students can communicate, plan, and share their files in these groups. They can also interact when absent or if they need to work in different areas of the school!
  2. Students can also private message the instructor, which is extremely helpful if students are absent or working around the school to record or edit. It is another way teachers can provide individual feedback or instruction throughout the day.
  3. We can create a class, where resources, links, and calendars are shared. In this class, we can create assignments and include rubrics and due dates. Teachers can grade and submit feedback right in Teams.

Watch this video to learn more about Microsoft Teams 


Are you familiar with these platforms? What do you see as the benefits or shortfalls? Let me know!

A.D.D.I.E with Ms. McLellan and Mr. Kauf

This course was designed with my colleague, Arkin Kauf! Click here to check out his blog.

Teaching middle school drama is tough. A quarter LOVE it, a quarter REALLY dislike it, and the rest are going through the motions and counting the days until we are back to painting or drawing. It is not unusual for performing and presenting to cause anxiety, so we decided to design our course around meeting the needs of our students in a subject that can be difficult to teach and hopefully help them have fun and fall in love with the content along the way.



In our blended and synchronous course, our grade 7 students will learn about the elements of radio plays, how to create soundscapes, how to use Foley sounds to create sound effects, and record, edit, and produce their own radio plays in small groups. The focus is not on writing skills so they will use pre-written stories; however, they will edit and adapt the stories to use soundscapes, effects, and voice acting wherever possible.

Our course will touch on each outcome of the grade 7 drama unit:


  • Use drama elements, strategies, negotiation, and collaboration to help shape the direction of the drama and/or collective creation.


  • Express ideas about the importance of place (e.g., relationships to the land, local geology, region, urban/rural environments) in drama and/or collective creation.


  • Investigate improvisation using the voice, instruments, and a wide variety of sound sources from the natural and constructed environment.


Our course will be used in a grade 7 Connected Classroom which has a high percentage of EAL students. In our experience teaching middle years, we frequently see student anxiety around presenting and performing. We have seen an uptick in absences on presentation days, a willingness to ‘take a 0’ on a presentation mark, issues with collaboration, and requests for alternate presentation times, like at recess or after school. Our goal is to meet students where they are and help build presentation and communication skills without increasing anxiety.


Our students are also very ‘techy’ – the vast majority have access to tech at home, and the novelty of tech at school has yet to wear off! We are hoping this meaningful integration of technology can help build excitement and the new platforms can keep things fresh and exciting.



Our LMS is primarily Microsoft Teams and Seesaw. Both these platforms allow for student/teacher communication, allow for feedback and assessment, can host resources and links, and parents can be involved in progress through Seesaw, which is a big plus! Both Teams and Seesaw are licensed by our division for all teaching staff. Other tools we will use are:


WeVideo – while there is the ability to edit and mix for free, as Connected Educators we are able to access licenses so we can use each feature of this platform. Here, students can share their projects with their group, edit on their own devices (much like a shared document in Google Docs or Word!), record,upload recordings, and share with the teacher. Licenses are usually granted for 30 days, but these can be extended based on need. Another benefit of using WeVideo for collaborative projects is that students do not need to be present to record. If a student is absent for an extended period of time, they can record their parts before leaving OR when they return, and their contributions can be spliced, layered, and reorganized in to fit the script!


BBC Sound Effects – a great little website filled with free-to-use soundscapes and sound effects! Students are able to layer sounds and create their own mixes for free. They can download their mixes straight from the website and upload them into WeVideo.



First, students will learn about soundscapes, and spend some time identifying different sounds in different environments. They will practice making their own soundscapes using BBC Sound Effects.


Then, students will spend some time learning about Foley sounds. For those unfamiliar, check out this video to see Foley engineers in action:

They’ll make their own sound effects with Foley in mind!


Lastly, students will put these elements together with the introduction of radio plays. They’ll learn about radio plays, listen to examples, identify elements, and then plan and produce their own radio plays in small groups.



We are heavily influenced by ITSE Student Standards, particularly the empowered learner focus (Students leverage technology to take an active role in choosing, achieving and demonstrating competency in their learning goals, informed by the learning sciences). We will try to dismantle as many road blocks as possible so students can still be challenged, but ultimately find success. Because of our high EAL percentage and performance anxiety in our class, there will be no story writing or ‘live’ performances. Students can take stories and make them their own, practice their parts, rerecord if they need, and share their final products in safe settings.


Attendance and hard deadlines are an inevitable aspect of our course. However, a benefit of our chosen platforms is that students can record all their parts individually (whether that be voice acting or creating sound effects) and these files can be edited in the order and sequence required. They do not have to record their play in its entirety at once, hoping for no errors! Students can also share audio files through Teams and access the platforms at home, if they have access to technology.

Here is our our ADDIE template – we look forward to hearing your feedback and learning more about the courses you designed!

The Wonderful World of Blended Learning

My Experience with Blended Learning


When I was in elementary school, it was a big day when each classroom got four desktop computers. We would crowd around and work on group PowerPoints, and rotate who got to type every few minutes. We loved using this new tech, and everything was more fun when we got to use it. When I was in high school, we had two computer labs for the school, each with 20 desktop computers. One was the Mac lab, primarily for photography students, and the rest of the school shared the generic lab. Seeing “meet in the computer lab” on our classroom door always meant we were in for a fun and engaging class, learning at our own pace through exploration. Blended learning positively impacted my educational experience as a student, and I love that I have the resources and opportunities to enhance my students’ learning in this same way.

laptop reading

According to Bates, “blended learning’ can mean minimal rethinking or redesign of classroom teaching, such as the use of classroom aids, or complete redesign as in flexibly designed courses, which aim to identify the unique pedagogical characteristics of face-to-face teaching, with online learning providing flexible access for the rest of the learning” (2019). I have experienced all three; as a brand new teacher, I used tech more so as a classroom aid, and students would occasionally have access to the shared laptop cart. Now I am a Connected Educator for my division, which means I have access to 1:1 technology for my students at all times, get licenses and subscriptions for certain programs to use with my students (like CoSpaces or WeVideo), and act as a tech support for my coworkers. I have been a part of this program since 2019, and I taught fully online in our online school during the 2020-2021 school year. During that year, I provided real-time instruction from 9:00am-2:00pm, after which was my prep time and students worked independently on Arts Ed, Phys Ed, French, or homework. I have had a lot of experience in online and blended learning environments, and have seen both the challenges blended learning creates and the benefits that come from effective blended learning practices.


Challenges and Opportunities


Challenges keyboard smash

Opportunities check box

  • Initial time investment to become familiar with resources, platforms, websites, programs
  • Extensive time to set routines, procedures, expectations with students
  • Building digital literacy skills*
  • Cost
  • Monitoring proper use 
  • Individualizing learning opportunities for student needs (EAL, assistive tech, student choice)
  • With experience, it reduces teacher planning and assessment time
  • Accessibility
  • Building digital literacy skills (yes – I consider this a challenge and an opportunity!)


Successes with Blended Learning

Blended learning, in my experience, takes a lot of work to implement effectively. Each year and group of students are different, so each year my Connected Classroom looks different depending on the needs of my students. However, each year brings new stories of successes because of the blended learning model. Some examples:

  • Using CoSpaces to code a chapter of our novel study brought successes for my EAL students, who were able to communicate understanding through character design and story progression (this was especially cool, because we got the VR headsets and students were able to explore each other’s chapters!)
  • Using Canva to record presentations for students who have anxiety for presentations and public speaking. They are able to build speaking skills, communicate their learning, and build their confidence without needing to present in front of a group right away
  • Participating in Virtual Heritage Fair, where students could pick points of interest, build research skills, design their own projects based on their skills and many even won prizes for their work!


What are some questions you still have about blending learning? What are some successes you’ve found? Let me know!


Hello everyone, and welcome to my EC&I learning journey. I am a middle years educator currently enrolled in the Teaching, Learning, and Leadership graduate studies program. While I have lots of experience teaching in online and blended learning environments, I look forward to identifying a more clear vision as to what this can look like in my classroom.

I look forward to learning with and from you all over the course of the next few months!