I had the opportunity over the last semester to use Pageflakes as a learning management system for my intermediate Italian course. The basis of this undertaking was the following, as prepared by @kahnp:
This study proposes a project to significantly enhance student success in a college intermediate Italian course by using new technologies and multimedia that will promote different ways of learning “ many of which are not traditionally part of the University classroom” and also support a range of learning styles. For instance, the inclusion of: a) images, charts, maps, videos, and animations to benefit visual learners; b) audio files, especially if these are linked to accompanying text files, to which auditory learners respond; and c) controls that allow students to regulate the way in which they interact with course materials for kinesthetic learners. (Richards, 2003).
Specifically, this presentation will show how Pageflakes was used instead of Bb as the chosen LMS in an Italian course. This customized webpage was used to deliver content in a variety of formats as well as provide the learning environment that promotes social constructivism that is suitable for today’s learner. For example, much of the content will be supported by news feeds using an RSS reader. In addition, students will participate in a variety of group activities as well as interactive exercises that utilize Pageflakes group sharing capabilities, audio and video podcasts, and Twitter, a hybrid micro-blogging and instant messaging system.
From this proposal we went on to conduct a pilot study to assess how content delivery would differ and if this difference does in fact compliment certain learning styles. I appreciate how we all think so, but there needs to be some measurable data to support our claim.
I can share some preliminary materials with you, but not everything for a number of reasons. First, I have one more presentation to give on my Pageflakes and Blackboard project at CALICO in Arizona (March) and I hope to be co-presenting with @sharongs at IIALT in Georgia (May). Second, I have so much data to analyze, I would be falsely presenting my findings if I provide you with perception of how the semester went with both groups.
What I can share with you is what I thought. In terms of preparing the material to share and assign to students, these is a very basic comparison of functional challenges we (@iVenus, @hellermd98 and @kahnp) found:
In terms of the aesthetic layout, compare these for yourself. Which do you prefer? I definitely know what I think is more holistically organized and more appealing.
Tell me what you think. I’m very interested if you have any experiences you’d like to share.