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Moodle is an online tool that allows educators to interact with students outside the classroom and manage a course from anywhere. In Moodle Essential Training for Teachers, Chris Mattia shows how this program works for teachers on three levels: disseminating information, creating a forum where ideas are exchanged, and assessing the progress of students. Chris shows how to build course materials with Moodle's HTML editor, post assignments, and save time by using Moodle's grade book to evaluate tests automatically and organize scores. Exercise files accompany the course.
Now as we are providing information to our students inside of Moodle, another great kind of resource that we want to add is links to the outside web. There is tons of information out there as you already know. In this exercise, what we are going to do is we are going to go in and we're going to create a web page that is going to be a list of links to outside web resources, and it's something you can constantly be coming back to and editing and pointing your students out to additional sites. So to begin, click on the Add a resource dropdown menu and select Compose a web page. For the name of this, we are going to call this Coral Reef Web Links. For the Summary description, we'll just say Links to Coral Reef related websites.
So go ahead and scroll down in the window to the Compose a web page, and we'll give a nice heading of Coral Reef Websites, and we'll hit Enter or Return, so that our cursor stand on the next line. The two links that we are going to begin with here are Wikipedia and we are going to point directly to the Coral Reefs site, because there is a lot of good information on Wikipedia for this. It may or may not be appropriate for the particular grade level that you are teaching, but in the case of this example, it will be a good site for us to go to.
We also want to link to NOAA's Coral Health and Monitoring home page and that's the NOAA - CHAMP page. So let's apply a little bit of formatting to this. We'll go ahead and select the Coral Reefs Website at the top and tell that is the Heading 1. For our list of links, we are going to select both of those and just make it a bulleted list, so each link will have its own bullet. The next thing we want to do is we want to make sure that we have the URL already selected for each of these links . Go ahead and use Ctrl+T or Command+T on your keyboard and that should open a new tab in your browser.
I have already gone ahead and gone to Wikipedia.org and done a search for Coral Reefs and I have got my browser already pointed at the Coral Reefs website for Wikipedia. As we quickly scroll down through this list, we can see there is a lot of really good information; there are some diagrams of what a fringing reef looks like, so the students will be able to see what the inner reef looks like, the reef crest, the outer reef or the fore reef, different distributions of Coral Reefs around the world. A lot of this information is really good and helpful for our students to have some nice background information.
So we'll go ahead and scroll back up to the top and what we were interested here is the URL. So simply select the URL at the top and copy that. You can use Command+C or Ctrl+C on your keyboard and let's go back to the tab for the Wikipedia site and select the whole listing for Wikipedia - Coral Reefs. Then what we want to do is click on the Insert Web link button in the HTML editor and it's going to ask us first for the URL. Go ahead and select the http:// and simply press Command+V or Ctrl+V because we already have a copy to our Clipboard. Paste that in and then the full URL goes in.
For a Title, let's go ahead and type in Wikipedia - Coral Reefs. What the Title is going to do is it's going to provide some Alt text for us. So as we hover our mouse over top of that link, if we just wait a second, the Alt text will appear inside of there. For Target, what I would like to do is set these to New Window because when I have my students working inside of my browser and I have them click on a link taking them to an outside site, outside of my Moodle page, I don't want them to loose my Moodle page. I want that website to remain inside of their browser. I don't want to have to have them constantly hitting back and trying to look and see where the Moodle site is.
So by selecting the Target of New Window, when they click on the link, a new window is just going to appear that's going to have this website already in it. Now we saw anchors in the previous movie, and we don't need to set any anchors in this case. So simply hit the OK button and we have a link there. The next site that we want to link to is the NOAA-CHAMP page . And again, you can open a new tab in your browser by doing Command+T or Ctrl+T and I have already gone ahead and done a search for this site and brought it up. It's a www.coral.noaa.gov and this is a fabulous site that's put together by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and it has a ton of information inside of here about Coral Reefs, Coral health and the monitoring of that.
So again, let's just go up the top and we'll go ahead and select that URL and copy it with Command+C or Ctrl+C and click back on the tab for Moodle and now we can select the text for the NOAA- CHAMP page, and click on the Insert a Link button in our HTML editor. The Insert Link window comes up and the URL is already selected for us, so we can simply hit Command+V or Ctrl+V and the URL gets pasted in. We want to give a title of NOAA-CHAMP and we again want the Target to a New Window. We'll go ahead and hit OK and we have our two links.
Now if want to add any additional links , we simply hit Enter or Return and a new bullet is created for us and we can add a new site. So let's go ahead and preview this page and see how it looks. So to do that, simply scroll all the way to the bottom and click the Save and display button. We get our header, Coral Reef Website and we'll go ahead and click on, Wikipedia-Coral Reefs and we can see that a new tab got created for us and it linked to the page and I'll go ahead and close these tabs, just so that you can really see that these are working properly.
Now we'll click on the NOAA-CHAMP page , and the NOAA-CHAMP site has opened up for us. I'll go ahead and click back on the Wikipedia site, go ahead and close that tab, so it's out of the way. We can return back out to our course, BIOL432. And there we go; we have got a HTML document now, we have links that link out to an outside resource. You can use this tool anywhere throughout your site, any document that you are creating. If you have got text that you are writing somewhere, you can select a piece of text. Click on that Insert Link tool and link to any website anywhere on the Internet.
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