Using Canvas

Incorporating an LMS into your classroom

Why Use Canvas?

  • Allows for easy organization for all users
  • Courses are already created for you
  • Re-Assessments
  • Absentees (students and staff)
  • Crazy School Schedules (students and staff)
  • Group and Individual Work
  • Ease of sharing of material, students and classes

Sanger's Canvas Instance

One page Cheat Sheet

Guides by Instructure

Canvas Competency Levels

Tool Guide for Teachers

Logging In To Canvas

Everyone - students and teachers - log into Canvas the same way. First, be sure your (and your students') screens all look like the image below. If they are not on this screen to log in, they are not in the Sanger ISD instance and they won't be able to log in. You will all use your first.lastname in the Email line; if I could change the word email I would. Because we are using it K-12, we couldn't use emails to log in since legally we cannot give students under the age of 13 an email. The password for everyone is Sisd+their six digit ID. For teachers, we put zeros in front of our ID number to get six digits. Students automatically have a six digit ID number. If my ID number were 1234, I would log in with Sisd001234; a student will log in with Sisd123456
Big image

If your students are struggling logging in, check the following items:

  • Be sure they are on the right screen. I made ours look as individual as possible with the Sanger S at the top, so students should just be able to turn their computer toward you to see it
  • Be sure the students are only using their first.lastname, not their full email.
  • If students have two last names, they are more than likely both part of their user name.
  • If you need to double check a student's username and ID number, you can get it in Canvas. If you go to their course and click People, you can see all usernames and passwords.
  • If you and the student still cannot log in, send an email to to get help.

Building Your Course

  • Create a Sandbox Course - be sure to title it with your last name and Sandbox (ie Austin Sandbox) so I can identify them as needed. You will use your Sandbox to "play" in. Because you can leave the course unpublished, you can use it to create material that you may not want others to see right away.
  • Cross-listing Your Courses - this allows you to put all students in one course but keep them in their own section. This should only be done when there is NO content in a course as you will lose all your grades, etc when you cross-list. Some people prefer to keep students in their own classes; this is up to you.
  • Add Students (or Co-Teachers, TAs, Observers, etc) - you won't necessarily need to add anyone. We have connected Canvas to TxEIS, so all students are automatically added to your courses. If you want, you can add TAs (some rights) or other teachers (full rights) so they can work in the course as well. Observers is the parents' role; we don't have that turned on right now, but once we do, we will share with them how to do it as well as let you know before we turn it on so you can see what they see.
  • Set up the navigation menu - this allows students to function easier in the course. If you only use modules, you can make the navigation menu only show modules. This keeps them from going to the wrong place at the wrong time. Many people are using the Kahoot, Quizziz and textbook links as well. This allows students to stay in Canvas while using the other programs.
  • Create modules - I like to think about Modules as file folders that hold all my materials. If you look at the module as the Unit in the YAG, that will help as well.
  • Organizing and adding content to modules - having these organized will really help your students. Think about the IFDs from TEKS Resource System.
  • Create assignments - these are things that have a grade attached to them. If you want them auto-graded, you should put them in using the Quiz tool; you can tie a rubric to these, so this is perfect for Performance Assessments. This is also good for those Google Form tests and quizzes you have already created.
  • Create quizzes - this is anything that you want auto-graded.
  • Using pages - think about these as you would instructions; any information you need to get to students that doesn't need to be graded should be on a page.
  • Setting Up the Home page - this would allow you to design your home page to make it easier for your students to navigate, especially at the younger grade levels and for non-traditional courses.

Want More After Today?

If you would like some online training, I have a Canvas training class that I can enroll you in. If you would prefer to have Face-to-Face training, let me know so we can work out some time together.

Here are also some videos on how to use parts of Canvas:

Adding ExamView Test Banks

How to Get Quiz Statistics

Sample Data from Quiz Statistics

Register Google Drive

Embed Google Docs as an assignment

Student Submission of Assignment Via Google Drive

Embed Padlet


Student Recordings

Embedding YouTube

Grading Assignments

Canvas in 7 Steps

Working with Canvas (Playlist of many tools on video)

Start to finish youtube playlist for Canvas

Creating Modules and Assignments



Want Even More? Region XI is here for you too!

Region XI has a bunch of trainings for you to do online, including Just In Time training to better meet your needs. You can find that by going to the Region XI instance at, click browse courses in the top right and select Canvas Best Practices

This is a favorite of mine - I can always go here for a refresher on anything I am

working on

The district coursels is Region XI's free 6-hour course deconstructed into just-in-time training.

Don't Be Afraid To Ask For Help

Feel free to contact me about any questions or concerns you have in regards to using Canvas.