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Playing to Learn

Students in EDY 209, Developmentally Appropriate Practices: Playing to Learn, went to Canalside to visit Explore & More Children’s Museum last Tuesday, September 28, 2021. During a private tour with the director of education, Val Drapeau, students had the opportunity to connect theory with practice. They were quite impressed with all this museum has to offer children and their families. It was quite apparent that even college students can play to learn!

Submitted by: Nicki M Calabrese, PhD., professor emerita, Education Department

Festi-ful Recap

Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff,

Thank you.

Thank you for not only showing up and supporting Friday’s Festi-ful event, but for donating towards helping your fellow Canisius College students in need. This amazing event opened at 10:00 a.m. and we instantly had a line at the donation table as well as each station ready to try some of the delicious food items that were offered. During the event we had raised $2,289 to help us bring the food pantry back better than ever before. This was accomplished through the generosity of not only the students and faculty, but President Hurley’s generous donation.

Throughout the four hour event we tallied a total of 620 people that stopped in to enjoy the food, music, games, and Bubly Swag. We played Spin the Wheel and Coin Flip Madness for various prizes and EVERYONE WAS A WINNER!! Hameed Ali (Mr. Frostee) and Shoppe 120 hosted the ice cream stand as well as the playlist for the event (“Hits of the 2000’s” and “Hits of ’09 through ’12”). Jim, one of our Pepsi representatives, was the guy behind the Bubly tent and swag handout. The ornate balloon display was brilliantly created by Buffalo Balloon Co. (they can be found on Instagram), we’d like to thank them for getting the display up early for us. Last but not least our incredible staff behind the line and in the kitchen deserves a huge thank you for their hard work and dedication to making this event happen. Chef Mike, Chef Tyree, and Chef Andrea organized and had their hand in everything that was eaten at the event.

Thank you to everyone that worked, and attended, this event and brought something unique to Festivall.

Submitted by: Aaron Abruzzino, marketing manager, Chartwells Higher Ed

-Canisius Dining

Summer Faculty Development Week 2021: Recordings

Recordings of the 2021 Summer Faculty Development Week sessions are now available upon request to Canisius College faculty and staff. These fantastic sessions covered a range of topics for pedagogy, research, and support resources for faculty and students. Email from your Canisius College email address to request access.

Submitted by: Tyler J. Kron-Piatek, academic technologist, COLI


D2L Grades


A fairly lightweight, manageable place to upgrade your courses in spring 2022 (or even now, in Fall) is the D2L Gradebook. You’re probably already using it, but in our D2L Grades workshop, and Self-Paced Training Video Set, we offer a bunch of tips for making it easier to use, and more effective in transmitting feedback to students.

Students appreciate having their grades reported through D2L. It may seem like they could properly track their grades on their own, but they are juggling multiple classes, together with additional responsibilities in the Covid-19 era. Properly using the D2L Gradebook can eliminate a lot of additional and exhausting work that accumulates day-to-day, such as frequent, student-prompted conversations about “how they are doing,” and repetitive procedural announcements in class or through D2L.

You can use the grades tool in various ways to build a gradebook best suited to your classes and teaching. Some faculty opt for a simple points-based addition system. For example, there are nine grade items, each of varying points value. At any time students can add together the graded materials for a quick understanding of their current situation in the course. Or a more complex gradebook can calculate a student’s average grade based on assignments, or even categories of assignments, each weighted differently. If you drop the lowest score or scores in a set of assignments, D2L can manage that for you, as well. At the end of the semester, you need only make a final letter-grade determination (consulting D2L’s calculations) to enter into the Final Grades screen outside D2L.

Recording grades in an excel spreadsheet may seem easier, but this does not report to students their progress, nor calculate for you their cumulative or average grades. Plus, if grades are entered into D2L, they can always be exported to an Excel spreadsheet for safekeeping or other purposes.

If you build a gradebook in a course once, you need not do it again the following semester, since the gradebook structure copies along with other course content.

We cover all of this in our D2L Grades Workshop. These are great opportunities to ask questions about gradebooks you currently have, too. And as always, you can make an appointment with us if you’d like to discuss more comprehensive changes to your grading structure in D2L.

Submitted by: Tyler J. Kron-Piatek, academic technologist, COLI