Side bar block
This contributed code module allows you to create separate activities and resources in a block. In the standard Moodle, these only appear in the center column. You can have multiple copies of this block in a course, each one unique.
It functions by creating course sections for each instance, starting at a number beyond what would normally be used by a course. This defaults to section 1000, but is configurable at the global level.
All resources and activities within a block can be edited and moved around just like normal activities when editing is turned on. Adding label resources allows you to add text to the blocks as well.
In a sense, this block combined the main menu block functions and HTML block functions into one block that can be used in a course.
Tips and tricks
- Use with a Lesson dependency feature. When you create an activity a Side bar block (like a Quiz), you can then hide the block and the quiz is still accessible via an internal link. Thus you can force a student to go through a series of Lessons before taking the quiz. In the last lesson of the series, put the internal link to the quiz which is hidden from view but is technically open to students. This is not 100% foolproof, but will keep most of the students on the path you want.