Learning Points, Tasks, Resources
In this step, you are going to create 4 main learning points for each of your steps. You are also going to create the tasks you will set your students and the resources you will provide.
4a: Create Your Learning Points
To find the learning points of each step, you are going to do some more brainstorming, thinking about results, and ordering.
The 4 Main Things
Now you have your steps, you need to think about the main points a student needs to learn. These will be your learning points and they make up the skeleton of your course. This will be easier than finding your main steps, because you are now just going into more detail on the main steps that you have already chosen. Look at each of your steps and think about what are the 4 main things a student will need to learn.
Again, try brainstorming. Think about each step one at a time, take a blank sheet of paper and write down all the main points a person could learn for that step, then organize these into groups. Think about the tasks you could have for each. Think about how your learning points could be related to the task in that step.
Order The Learning Points
After you have written your learning points, you need to put them in order. Sometimes, the order is obvious (e.g. easy then difficult). Other times, it’s not so obvious and you will need to choose what order to put them in based on your preference. For example, if you created a “health” course , and you had a step called “exercise”, the learning points might be “benefits of exercise”, “types of exercise”, “dangers of exercise”, “how to set up an exercise plan”. There is no obvious order, so you will need to choose the order based on your preference. For example, you could have “benefits of exercise” first, so they understand “why to learn”. Then you could have “types of exercise” second to help them imagine it. Then you could have “dangers of exercise” third to make sure they don’t injure themselves. Then last, you could explain “how to set up an exercise plan” so they are ready to do the task!
Write Your Learning Points
Now, you are going to write the learning points for each step. As described, you can brainstorm for these and then figure out the ordering before you submit them in the task. You need to make sure they are in the right order and you need to write them out as full sentences. Take care with these as they will form the basis for your PowerPoints and videos in future steps.
Write a full sentence explaining exactly what you want the student to learn from this learning point. Altogether, there are 36 learning points which is quite a lot so it’s better to be clear now while you are thinking about them.
4b: Create Your Tasks
Tasks V. Results
There is a difference between tasks and results. Think about a guitar student – if the task is to create a YouTube video playing a piece, the result is the ability to play. Now, you are going to make sure you are happy with the tasks for each section. Think about what task is good for each step of your course and describe it. Consider this: “What can your students create or do that will help them remember what they have learnt in each step of your course?” For each step, write down the task.
Collection Of Tasks
After you have created all the tasks for the steps in your course, you will have a collection of 9 tasks. This collection will be the achievement of the student who has done your course. For new students who want to take your course, they will be able to see what they can achieve too. Sometimes your tasks will be little steps that make up a big step when you put them all together. For example, let’s say your course is about “How To Write A Book”. Maybe the first step is to create the plot, the second step is to write the chapter titles, the third step is to explain the characters, and so on… Each of these steps is an easy small step, but when your students have finished all the steps, they will have done something complex, i.e “they will have written a book.”
Same Types Of Task
It works well if your tasks are all the same type of task or similar, so that the student can get used to doing them. They can get more confident each time they do another task. For example: the guitar playing student – the first time he records for YouTube, he worries about the recording, the microphone, how he appears on video etc… But each time he does a task and records another piece, he gets more confident and can focus more on playing his piece. There are various type of task you can set your students. Take a look at the main types below.
Firstly, consider an online form that your students fill out. It could include a text box where students can write an answer to your question. Or, it could have “yes / no questions”, where they can test how much they have learnt. You could provide upload buttons on the form, where students can upload “audio / visual / video” files.
Secondly consider offline tasks (tasks not on the internet). You can have simple offline tasks, such as writing notes on a particular topic, keeping a notepad where you jot down your progress at different steps, filling in a printable wall chart as you progress through the course, or something else. For example, a friend of mine who has a course on low-carb diets has a simple wall planner where you take measurements every week to keep track of weight and waist size. On the other hand, you could have more complicated offline tasks, such as cooking a recipe, completing a public speaking engagement or going to an interview.
Easy & Fun
The type of task you set depends on your course. Just remember: try to keep your tasks easy and fun. This will help your students to be motivated and carry on with your course. You only need to set up 9 tasks for the whole course, so think about what are the most meaningful tasks for students to complete after each step. Do the tasks help your students remember what they learnt? Do the tasks help your students learn?
You can have “progressive” tasks, like in this course, where each task builds on the last task, so that you can simplify an overall difficult task into easier tasks. Think about this course: it’s difficult to put together an online course. However, by completing easy tasks one-by-one where each one builds on the last, it becomes easier. This is “progressive”. Remember to make your tasks achievable and try to keep your first few tasks quite easy. Think about the student, put yourself in their shoes, think about what stage they are at and design a suitable task for the step.
Write Your Tasks
Now you can write out full descriptions of the tasks you will set for students of your course. Bear in mind, you can return to this section later and change these if you need to. If you are going to create a multiple choice quiz, you can use this section to add your questions. If you are going to set an offline task or add an online form as your task, you can use this section to write your instructions.
4c: Create Your Resources
Think About Resources
Think about the resources that you can provide for each learning point. These will probably be downloads, infographics or checklists that will help your students learn. These can make your learning more enjoyable and they can help your students to complete the tasks.
Make Learning Easier
Look at each learning point and think about what resource could make it easier for your students to learn. Everyone learns differently. Some people learn better with visuals, others learn better with sound, others learn better by doing tasks. What types of resources can you make for different types of learners?
Make Tasks Easier
One idea is to create learning resources around the task for each step. Think about
“What will make it easier for your students to complete the task?”
The tasks you set will give your students confidence that they are learning and achieving something. If your resources can help them to complete the tasks, then you will give your students more confidence. For example, imagine you have a course on “writing a book”, and the step is “chapter titles” where the task is to write the chapter titles on a worksheet. A helpful resource could be a sample “chapter-title worksheet” that has already been completed.
Types Of Resources
The types of resources you can use are PDF downloads, infographics (a picture showing a system or process) or an example of the task already finished. You can also use video or audio here if you want, but bear in mind that you will also be creating video for the main content of each of your steps.
Create Your Resources
Your task here is to make a plan for the creation of your resources and to create them. If you are stuck trying to create your resources yourself, you can try to outsource their creation on fiverr.com – there are many “gigs” on there offering inexpensive solutions for resource creation. The important thing is that you make steps towards the resource creation. Don’t just write out your plan – take the first step.