Associating Images with Words in Moodle 1.9 for Special kids

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Moodle 1.9 for Teaching Special Education Children (5-10): Beginner's Guide

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Create courses and therapies for children with special educational needs using Moodle for effective e-learning

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by Vanesa S. Olsen | July 2010 | Moodle Open Source

In this article, we create many visually rich activities combining text and pictures.

In this article by Vanesa S. Olsen, author of Moodle 1.9 for Teaching Special Education Children (5-10): Beginner's Guide   we will learn:

  • Learn how to combine images with sounds to represent real-life situations
  • Create activities to write sentences according to visual and sound resources
  • Improve simple writing and composing skills

(Read more interesting articles on Moodle 1.9 here.)

Writing a sentence using two images

It was such a beautiful day on the beach. The sun was shining in the sky, the sand was clean and glittering, the sea was clear, blue, and full of waves to play with. A perfect day to go for a swim.

Alice and her little brother Kevin ran towards the sea together. They played, jumped, and slid with their body surfing boards and the waves. Suddenly, an animal appeared swimming between them. It was a dolphin. It jumped and threw water at them. Awesome! Alice was so happy because she had a new and very special friend on this vacation.

Time for action – looking for two images to generate the exercise

We are going to search for two royalty-free photos related to the beach in two specialized web pages. We are then going to use them to create a rich activity.

  1. Create a new folder in Windows Explorer (C:\Beach).
  2. Open your default web browser and go to http://animalphotos.info. This web page allows us to search for royalty-free animal photos.
  3. Enter dolphin in the textbox and then click on the Search button. Browse through the results and select the desired photo of a single dolphin, as shown in the next image:

    Associating Images with Words in Moodle 1.9 for Special kids

  4. Right-click on the desired image with the dolphin and select Save picture as in the context menu that appears. Save the file as image030101.jpg in the previously created folder, C:\Beach.
  5. Open your default web browser and go to http://freedigitalphotos.net.This web page allows us to search for, and download, royalty-free photos.
  6. Enter sea in the textbox and then click on the Go button. The available photo thumbnails related to the entered keyword will appear. Browse through the results and select the desired photo of the sea, as shown in the next image:

    Associating Images with Words in Moodle 1.9 for Special kids

  7. Right-click on the desired image thumbnail with the sea and select Save picture as in the context menu that appears. Save the file as image030102.jpg in the previously created folder, C:\Beach.

What just happened?

We searched for two royalty-free photos related to the beach. In this case, we worked with two web pages, http://animalphotos.info and http://freedigitalphotos.net.

We now have the following two digital photos ready to be used in our writing sentences using two images exercise:

  • image030101.png: A dolphin
  • image030102.png: The sea and the shore

It is very important to use photos in this exercise because the idea is to train the description of real-life scenarios.

Time for action – searching for related sounds

We have two digital photos and we want to add related sounds to them. We are going to search for MP3 files to use as sound effects for the scenes in The Freesound Project website (http://www.freesound.org/):

  1. Open your default web browser and go to http://www.freesound.org. This web page allows us to search for, and download, sound files. It is necessary to register on this website in order to be able to download its files. The registration and access to its content are both free of cost.
  2. The Freesound Project website offers high-quality sounds with a Creative Commons License. The website offers thousands of samples.However, it does not offer songs.

  3. Click on Search under Search/Browse.
  4. Activate the Filenames checkbox. This way, the website will also search the file names of its sound files database.
  5. Enter sea mp3 in the textbox and then click on the Submit button. The results with the details of many sound files will appear. You can click on the Play button on the left-hand side of each sound file's name and preview the recorded sound, as shown in the next screenshot:

    Associating Images with Words in Moodle 1.9 for Special kids

  6. Click on the selected file name (WavesOnBeach.mp3) or on its waveform. A new page with more detailed information will appear (http://www.freesound.org/samplesViewSingle.php?id=14777), as shown in the next screenshot:

    Associating Images with Words in Moodle 1.9 for Special kidsAssociating Images with Words in Moodle 1.9 for Special kids

  7. Check the license information about the chosen file.
  8. Right-click on the Download label, located on the upper right-hand corner, and select Save target as in the context menu that appears. Save the file as sound030102.mp3 in the previously created folder, C:\Beach. As this sound is related to the sea represented by the photo named image030102.jpg, we use the same name and another extension (.mp3 instead of .jpg).
  9. Next, go back to the web browser and repeat the aforementioned steps (2 to 7) to find and download sound related to a dolphin in MP3 format. In this case,repeat those steps searching for dolphin mp3 and save the sound file as sound030101.mp3 in the same folder. A nice recording of dolphins found on this website is common_dolphins_isla_san_jose_16jan2002.mp3 (http://www.freesound.org/samplesViewSingle.php?id=52099).

What just happened?

We searched for two sound files in MP3 format because it is easy to integrate it into a Moodle exercise. We now have the following two digitalized sounds ready to be used in our writing sentences using two images and their related sounds exercise:

  • sound030101.mp3: Dolphins on San Jose island
  • sound030102.mp3: Waves on the beach

Time for action – activating the MP3 player in Moodle

As we are going to add the aforementioned sound files to our exercise in Moodle, we have to make sure that its multimedia plugins are enabled.

  1. Log in to your Moodle server.
  2. Click on Modules Filters | Manage| filters on the Site Administration panel.
  3. If the Multimedia Plugins filter appears in grey and displays a closed eye icon in the Disable/Enable column, you must click on this icon to change it to an opened eye icon. This way, Moodle will enable the multimedia plugins, as shown in the next screenshot:

    Associating Images with Words in Moodle 1.9 for Special kids

  4. If you made changes, click on the Save changes button.
  5. Next, click on Modules Filters | Multimedia Plugins| in the Site Administration panel.
  6. Make sure that the Enable .mp3 filter checkbox is activated. If it is not, activate it and then click on the Save changes button.

What just happened?

We made the necessary changes in Moodle's configuration in order to make it possible to use its MP3 player. This way, we are going to be able to embed the sound files associated with the photographs, offering both visual and auditory perception resources in the exercise.

Moodle 1.9 for Teaching Special Education Children (5-10): Beginner's Guide Create courses and therapies for children with special educational needs using Moodle for effective e-learning
Published: July 2010
eBook Price: $26.99
Book Price: $44.99
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(Read more interesting articles on Moodle 1.9 here.)

Time for action – integrating the visual and auditory resources in a Moodle exercise

We now have to upload the photos and their related sounds in order to add our exercise to an existing Moodle course.

  1. Log in to your Moodle server.
  2. Click on the desired course name (Beach). You can create a new course or use an existing one.
  3. As previously learned, follow the necessary steps to edit the summary for a desired week. Enter Exercise 1 in the Summary textbox and save the changes.
  4. Click on the Add an activity combo box for the selected week and select Online text.
  5. Enter Writing a sentence in Assignment name.
  6. Select Verdana in font and 5 (18) in size—the first two combo boxes below Description.
  7. Select your desired color for the text.
  8. Click on the big textbox below Description and enter Writing a sentence using two photos. This is the description of the student's goal for this exercise.
  9. Press Enter and type Listen to its sound. Then, select this text and click on the Insert Web Link button (a chain). A new web page will appear displaying the title Insert Link.
  10. Click on the Browse button and follow the necessary steps to create a new folder, chapter03. It will allow us to organize the necessary files for our new exercise.
  11. Click on the Browse button. Browse to the folder that holds the sound files and the images used in the exercise (C:\Beach) and select the file to upload, sound030101.mp3. Next, click on Open, on Upload and on the file name link.
  12. Moodle will display the URL for this sound file in the URL textbox. Enter Listen to its sound in the title textbox and click on OK.
  13. Press Enter and click on the Insert Image button (a mountain or a tree according to the Moodle version). A new web page will appear displaying the title Insert Image.
  14. Follow the necessary steps to upload the file image030101.png in the previously created folder, chapter03. Remember to enter an alternate text, and the image will appear below the previously entered title.
  15. Remember that you can click on the Enlarge editor button in order to view all the instructions. Repeat the aforementioned steps (9 to 14) in order to add the second sound file, sound030102, and its related image, image030102.jpg. Take into account that it is not necessary to create the chapter03 folder again.
  16. The online text assignment will display the title and the two Listen to its sound subtitles with their related photos, as shown in the next screenshot:

    Associating Images with Words in Moodle 1.9 for Special kids

  17. Finally, scroll down and select Save and return to course.

What just happened?

We added the writing sentences using two images and their related sounds exercise to a Moodle course. The students are now going to be able to write a sentence after watching the images and listening to their related sounds by clicking on its hyperlink in the corresponding week.

We used a new folder, chapter03. We uploaded the two MP3 sound files and their related images. We added a title and two hyperlinks to the MP3 sound files. As we had made sure that the multimedia plugins were enabled, Moodle is going to show a media player to allow the student to reproduce the MP3 sound file in their browsers.

The online text assignment allowed us to describe the goals for the activity mixing photos with their related sounds.

Time for action – writing the sentence

  1. Click on the course name (Beach) and switch your role to student.
  2. Click on the Writing a sentence link on the corresponding week. The web browser will show the two photos with a media player on top of each one. Click on the Play button on the right-hand side of the Listen to its sound label. You will be able to listen to the sound file associated with each image, as shown in the next screenshot:

    You can click on the Play button for both sounds. This way, you can listen to the waves on the beach and the sound made by dolphins at the same time.

  3. Click on the Edit my submission button. Moodle will display a big text area with an HTML editor.
  4. Select Verdana in font and 5 (18) in size.
  5. Write a sentence, The dolphin is swimming in the sea. as shown in the next screenshot:

  6. Click on the Save changes button. This way, Moodle will save the results for this exercise.
  7. Don't forget to check the results for this exercise as previously learned.

What just happened?

In this activity, we worked with real-life images and sounds. Our goal in this exercise was that the child listen to the audio, watch the images, and then find their relationship. The child can work alone, or with the help of a therapist or a family member, so that he/she can understand and run the exercise.

The activity consists of writing a simple sentence considering the photos and their related sounds. We applied the following concepts and resources:

  • Visual and auditory perception resources. We simplified the execution of the activity using sounds. The sound resources offer an additional source of information in order to simplify the identification of each element or scene.
  • Photographs. They offer a perfect representation of a real-life scene. The child has to write a sentence about these photos.
  • Associating images. The child has to associate two images in order to find a relationship between them and consider their related sounds. In this case, the sea is the animal's natural environment.
  • Simple writing and composing skills. The child has to work with language structures, order, and coherence.
  • Motivation. The real sound recordings and photographs usually increase the child's interest in this activity.

We can increase the complexity of this exercise using more images and just one sound. We can then also use complex photographs with many elements in different sizes. The main character in each picture can be the bigger one.

Summary

In this article we have learned :

  • Learn how to combine images with sounds to represent real-life situations
  • Create activities to write sentences according to visual and sound resources
  • Improve simple writing and composing skills

If you have read this article you may be interested to view:


Moodle 1.9 for Teaching Special Education Children (5-10): Beginner's Guide Create courses and therapies for children with special educational needs using Moodle for effective e-learning
Published: July 2010
eBook Price: $26.99
Book Price: $44.99
See more
Select your format and quantity:

About the Author :


Vanesa S. Olsen

Vanesa Olsen is a Speech Therapist. She has been working for more than five years in therapeutic centers, schools, and hospitals. She has been applying modern technologies in language disorders and learning disability treatments, and in helping schools to keep the students in the least restrictive environment. Specifically, she has been working with Moodle as an e-Learning platform, Alice and other tools, combined with the usage of Web 2.0 and general purpose modern hardware as gamepads, pen sketches, touch screens, netbooks and joysticks. She enjoys helping children and teenagers to improve their skills.

She has written another book for Packt Publishing, Moodle 1.9 for Teaching Special Education Children (5-10): Beginner's Guide.

She lives with her husband, Gaston, and her little son, Kevin. When she is not working she devotes her spare time to her family and hobbies. She enjoys modeling in cold porcelain, swimming, and researching about new technologies and techniques to apply in her treatments.
You can contact her at vanesaolsen@gmail.com and at olsenvanesa@live.com

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