Blog for Canvas Parent Observers

  • How do you use the Calendar in Canvas as Parent Observer?

    Posted by Kelly Scott on 9/3/2018

    Click on this link to read about using the Calendar in Canvas

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  • How do you check your Grades in Canvas for students/parents

    Posted by Kelly Scott on 1/26/2018 8:00:00 AM

    Go to this link to watch video

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  • What do all those Icons mean next to assignments/tests?

    Posted by Kelly Scott on 1/8/2018 12:00:00 PM

    This link will show you what those icons stand for.


    How do I use the icons and colors in the Grades page?

    There are different icons on the Grades page. Depending on the type of assignment submission, grading rules, and comments, you will see different icons.

    Submission Type Icons

    Submission Type Icons

    The following icons represent different assignment submission types on your Grades page:

    • Document Icon [1]: File upload submitted, not graded
    • Discussion Icon [2]: Graded discussion submitted, but not graded
    • Link Icon [3]: A URL has been submitted, not graded
    • Muted Icon [4]: Score is hidden while instructor is grading; you will not be able to view your grade, submission comments, or quiz responses until your instructor unmutes the assignment
    • Filmstrip Icon [5]: Media recording submitted, not graded
    • Quiz icon [6]: Quiz submitted, not fully graded (contains questions that must be manually graded, or an auto-submitted quiz score has been deleted and needs to be reassigned); can also display if a quiz has been edited and includes major changes that affect the quiz score, such as deleting questions or deleting quiz answers, and requires a grader to manually resolve
    • Text Icon [7]: Text entry submitted, not graded

    Submission Details Icons

    Submission Details Icons
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  • How do I link a student to my user account as an observer?

    Posted by Kelly Scott on 11/1/2017 4:00:00 PM
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  • Canvas Student Guide *Help for using Canvas as Student

    Posted by Kelly Scott on 8/25/2017 11:00:00 AM

    Here is a link to a Table of Contents for Students to use Canvas.  Hope this helps. 

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  • For Students: How do I submit an online Assignment

    Posted by Kelly Scott on 8/23/2017 11:20:00 AM

    How do I submit an online assignment?

    You can submit online Assignments in Canvas using several submission types. Instructors can choose what kind of online submissions they want you to use. You may also have the option to resubmit assignments if your instructor allows.

    Any attachments added as part of a graded assignment submission are also copied to your user files but are not counted against your user quota. However, once the file has been uploaded as a submission, you cannot delete the file. Files are stored in the Submissions folder.

    Before submitting an assignment, you may want to review all assignment information, such as the assignment rubric, if any.

    This lesson shows how to turn in a standard online assignment. Learn how to submit a Turnitin assignment or a peer review assignment.

    Third-Party File Application Submissions

    You can submit assignments from Google Drive, Dropbox, or another third-party service via your desktop computer in one of two ways:

    1. Download the file to your computer and submit as a File Upload
    2. Share the file, copy the file URL, and submit as a Website URL

    Mobile Submissions

    You can also submit assignments using your Android or iOS device.


    • Not all file types may be available for your assignment, depending on the assignment submission type set by your instructor.
    • Not all of your assignments may be submitted online. If you cannot see the Submit Assignment link, your instructor may want you to submit your assignment in a different way or the availability date has passed. View the description of the assignment for instructions, or contact your instructor for assistance.

    Open Assignments

    Open Assignments

    In Course Navigation, click the Assignments link.

    Note: You can also access your Assignments through your user or course dashboard, the Syllabus, Gradebook, Calendar, or Modules.

    View Course Assignments

    View Course Assignments

    Click the name of an assignment.

    Submit Assignment

    Submit Assignment

    To submit an assignment, click the Submit Assignment button to submit your work.

    Note: If you cannot see the Submit Assignment button, your instructor may not want you to submit your assignment online or the availability date has passed. View the description of the assignment for instructions, or contact your instructor for assistance.

    View Final Grade Notice

    View Final Grade Notice

    A banner may appear above your assignment to indicate that your instructor has removed the assignment from total grade calculations. However, this setting does not affect assignment submissions.

    Select Submission Type

    Select Submission Type

    Your instructor will decide what kinds of submissions are appropriate for each Assignment. There are four submission types: upload a file, submit a text entry, enter a website URL, or submit media.

    Note: Not all file types may be available for your Assignment, depending on the assignment submission type set by your instructor.

    Submit a File Upload

    Submit a File Upload

    To upload a file from your computer and submit as your assignment, select the File Upload tab.

    Click the Choose File button [1]. If you have already uploaded your assignment to Canvas and want to select it for your assignment submission, click the Click here...uploaded link [2].

    Click the Submit Assignment button [3].

    Submit a Text Entry

    Submit a Text Entry

    To submit a text entry assignment, select the Text Entry tab.

    Type or copy and paste text into the Rich Content Editor [1]. Click the Submit Assignment button [2].

    Submit Website URL

    Submit Website URL

    To submit a website URL, select the Website URL tab.

    Type or copy and paste the URL into the Website URL field [1]. Click the Submit Assignment button [2].

    Submit Media Recording

    Submit Media Recording

    To submit a media recording, select the Media tab.

    Click the Record/Upload Media button [1]. Follow the instructions to record or upload your media. Click the Submit Assignment button [2].

    View Submission

    View Submission

    After you have submitted your work, you will see information in the Sidebar about your submission [1]. For file uploads, the sidebar provides a link to your submission to download if necessary.

    If you choose, you may resubmit another version of your assignment using the Re-submit Assignment button [2]. You will only be able to view the details of your most recent submission in the Sidebar, but your instructor will be able to see all of your submissions.

    Once the instructor has graded your submission, the Grades link in Course Navigation displays a grading indicator.

    You can also see details about your assignment and links to additional feedback in your Grades page.


    • Your assignment will still appear in Assignments and the Syllabus; the listing is not removed with assignment submissions.
    • If you resubmit an assignment that has been reuploaded to Canvas by your instructor, the original submission will remain visible in the sidebar.
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  • Canvas Icons -Grading and Assignments

    Posted by Kelly Scott on 8/21/2017 8:00:00 AM

    grade icons

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  • What is Canvas? for parents new to Canvas

    Posted by Kelly Scott on 8/20/2017 3:00:00 PM

    What is Canvas?

    Canvas is a learning management system (LMS) that allows teachers to provide instructional support, class calendars, assignments and resources for students in a safe online environment. For traditional face to face classes, Canvas is an integral part of sharing blended classroom instruction. All Canvas courses are developed by RHSD3 staff.

    What is an Observer role in Canvas? Observers have limited permissions that allow them to see what is going on in a course and a calendar of assignments. Like students, Observers cannot view a course until it is published and the course has started. For assistance with Assignments, Homework, Test Dates, Quizzes, or other Canvas course content, please contact your child’s teacher.

    What can Parents view in Canvas?  Below are the features available to Parents. Please note that not all courses use all features.

    • Set your Notifications
    • View the Dashboard
    • View the course Syllabus
    • View prompts but not participate in Discussions
    • View but not submit Assignments
    • Preview and download some Files
    • View Canvas Grades
    • View the Calendar
    • Communicate with the teacher

    How will Parents access Canvas?

    • The link to the Canvas login is located at Follow instructions for creating your parent login. You will need at least one of your child’s canvas account login information initially. Please remember to bookmark the Canvas login website for future quick and easy access.
    • Your username and password are the email and password that you enter initially. For help with this signup, contact Shemia Thompson at
    • Parents should not use their student's login credentials.
    • There is an app in Google Play and the App Store for tablets and smartphones. Windows devices use the browser.

    How can I learn more about being an Observer in Canvas?

    For Sullivan’s blog for parents and canvas, click here

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  • An Intro to Canvas Video

    Posted by Kelly Scott on 3/31/2017 1:00:00 AM

    Watch this video from Canvas Community for Introduction to Canvas


    Parent Registration and Student Observation from Canvas LMS on Vimeo.

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  • More than one child you are observing in Canvas?

    Posted by Kelly Scott on 3/29/2017

    This can be difficult to follow more than one child because they are not separated out very well in Canvas. 

    Here is the question and answer from the Canvas Community page. Click Link or see below   

    From the Canvas Community Page:
    How do parents filter what they see by each child in their family?

    I am a parent who has two kids in two different grades.  How can I sort or filter what I see by each kid?

    For example, if I only want to see my older son's assignments, how do I filter out his younger brother's assignments?

    Hi Greg -

    When we work with parents with more than one student, we some times recommend creating two observer accounts. It's not ideal, but then you have a customized view of each student. It helps when figuring out which of your students is enrolled in which classes, and this is especially so when students are in Middle and High School where they have multiple courses, activities, etc.

    Does your institution/district support Canvas Parent? If so, that's a great way to separate course and assignment notifications on a student-by-student basis.

    Mary Russell Sanders
    Oct 19, 2016 12:49 PM

    Our school recommends color coding and renaming the courses on the dashboard.  For example, the parent sets each course for student #1 to blue and renames the courses to something meaningful for that student (John - Science).  Then courses for student #2 are assigned a different color with custom names (Jane - Science).  These colors and names translate over to the calendar view so it's easy to distinguish one child's assignments from the other child's.  Since ten courses can only be enabled at a time, the color coding and nicknaming helps ensure the "right collection" of courses is enabled.  The colors and names can be changed by clicking on the pencil in the upper right corner of each course block on the Dashboard.

    For parents who want the assignments in view all the time, we suggest capturing the internet calendar feed from each student's account and adding the feeds to an Outlook or Google calendar.

    These schemes have worked fairly well for our parents, but each school is using Canvas a little differently.  You may want to reach out to someone at your school for recommendations.

    Jan 3, 2017 12:18 PM

    We also recommend you color code and nickname courses. We also recommend you start from the calendar because then you can turn on and off courses as you wish to see them.


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