Putting paragraphs in the correct order

akud's picture

Many of my student teachers ask me how about a kind of activities like “putting in order words/sentences/paragraphs to make sentences/paragraphs/stories”.

This feature request falls in between the Drag and Drop and Drag the Words content types. Likely, it will have a great benefit into the second language teaching community, where textual tools are primarily important. Images, audio and video take us into the land where teaching and learning get into poetry. Nevertheless, we need texts as the foundation of our works.

Drag and Drop works with images and an image is therefore needed. If it was somewhat optional, then the alternative text could work in its place. Both optional and/but one needed.

Drag the Words, appearently second choice, is maybe better (see pictures). Ok, it's a starting point. With some tweaks to get better formatting options ("responsive" - i.e. not fixed - dimensions for the blue boxes, and left align to the text into the gray ones) it could be interesting.

The result should look, visually, like this: http://www.bbc.co.uk/skillswise/worksheet/en14para-e2-w-order-the-paragr... - which is a "dead" D&D.

This is not the first feature request that goes in this direction. Now, I’m not asking anyone to work on this subject, to prioritize it and so on. Having an idea about how to get to a solution would be of some help.

Here are some more examples.

An ugly HotPotatoes solution: http://www.buowl.boun.edu.tr/students/writing%20exercises/parents1.htm

Effective but poorly elegant solution (interesting the numbering...): http://www.esl-lounge.com/student/reading/3r2-alien-story.php



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BV52's picture

Hi akud,

Thanks a lot for contributing your ideas on how to make H5P better! We’re now working on something called the H5P supporter program allowing the H5P community to vote for and fund the top voted H5P features. Also there are developers in the community who every now and then works on a feature they find interesting or useful. Furthermore there is a task created similar to your request and you can follow it here.


akud's picture

One of my student teachers (trainee?) discovered how to obtain a reordering paragraphs using Summary. Maybe it's not a big deal and you already knew this "solution". But I wanted to share it with the community, also looking for some opinion about this sort of a hack... So, could this work?

Attached, is the H5P file (it's in Italian, so... pretend it's a dummy text).

Meanwhile, I had found another reordering solution (extremely rude, but effective) in Moodle, using Matching. Another screenshot.

H5P file: 
otacke's picture


Thanks for sharing the workaround! However, I can see how a new content type for this particular task might be useful ...


akud's picture

Thank you again. In general, this little workaround is enough to get going, but the need of new or more versatile interactive contents is persistent.
In fact, I insist that second language acquisition is a "framework" (and a privileged one) that gift us everyday with precious hints about how and in what direction to move for new and powerful interactive contents. Here, the imagination about the incredible things we could ask our learners to perform is a its top. The edge. No way. 
Anyway, to keep my feet down to earth, I remember that few months ago, together with this one, I posted one more thread (Two plain text integrations for second language teaching) where I wondered why we don't have the ability to make a broader use of text (matching and "memorying" between texts instead of text and images and free text box to write in).

It's a great effort to keep training teachers into the H5P boundary.
Consider that we - strategically and theoretically - decided to use WordPress posts to create sort of a sandbox with our learning units where, moreover than H5P shortcodes, it's virtually possible to insert iframes by other resources (Padlet, ThingLink, LearningApps, Quizlet, etc., etc., etc.). Of course we strive not to induce people using external tools, and when we "fail" we ask them for using H5P iFrame Embedder (luckily this is often - though not always - the best choice). Unfortunately, embedded stuff can't be send to any LRS nor in the H5PxAPIkatchu (note, this one suggest an interesting direction to explore).

To conclude...
Into Italiano in un click (this is the name our student teachers gave to our "sandbox"), a few people (4-5), in the last 2 months created (populated) around 80 learning units (OER) with about 490 H5P interactive contents (and several dozens of others) inside.
In the next future we're easily increasing these numbers. We have an instance of Learning Locker on AWS but since we work to a lower level of insight (and preferably into WP) it would be interesting to explore/develope the results we get through H5PxAPIkatchu.
Our "case study" is in Italian but we are here to help...

otacke's picture

I absolutely share your thoughts about the value of being proficient in speaking more than one language -- I admire polyglots -- but I do not feel competent enough to contribute something to the discussion about "perfect" tools.

Regarding OER, I am a little more confident ;-) I have been advocate for the open education movement for quite some time now, and my suggestion for you is to also attach some license information to each item. Even if from your perspective everything is public domain, people don't know that by just looking at the page -- and if in doubt, many countries by default forbid to remix and republish such content and people may just move on. In that case, it's a good idea to incorporate a hint to CC0 for instance, or maybe any of the CC licenses that suit your needs. We are working on a release that will allow you to manage licenses next to H5P content way better than today.

I think you could forward xAPI events to the parent window, so you could also pick up events if H5P is embedded. This would however raise security/data privacy issues that would have to be dealt with. Someone could embed content from h5p.org on his/her page, lure users who are logged in at h5p.org to his/her page and collect their personal information that's included in the xAPI statements. You could "disguise" or remove that information, but you'd end up with pseudonymized or anonymized data only.

akud's picture

Well, maybe I was not so off topic...

Just to be precise, I didn't mean to raise any discussion about the perfect tool. It was not my intention, I'm very sorry if I gave this idea, and, most of all, I think this is all about to get better and better with what we have. A text field instead of an image in matching and/or memory, an hypothetical fork from summary to get a reordering tool... rough ideas (truly rough, maybe too much, I'm afraid). Anyway, one thing leads to another.

Second, I thank you for reminding me about CC licenses. In the prior version, the site was not aimed to students but to training teachers, and this was its home page. Here, at the bottom, we stated the CC BY-NC-SA statement, motivating the reason why we choose it. Of course, you're right, it'd be much better to have a link in every page to remind visitors about this legal condition. I'm not an expert in this domain and what I think right now is to add a link in the footer, with the reference to the CC BY-NC-SA (just one for every contents, I mean, always the same license throughout the entire site). Well, this seems to be applicable to every posts and not to every interactive contents. Here too I would appreciate any suggestion.

Finally, I'm sorry but I can't understand the meaning of the 3rd paragraph. Rather, the problem is that I'm supposed to teach to students, train teachers, create materials, solve technical problems (I'm not a coder) and, most important, write academic papers to let my colleagues know what incredible things, thanks to H5P and the aggregated ecosystem we created, are going on. Unfortunately, this is way beyond my human capacities. So, I hope that some link to CC could help me to get something better. And then I have faith that H5P, in the time to come, will progressively enhance its interactive contents.


PD. In the "Info" menu subsections, moreover than the old home page I mentioned there's also the manifesto I wrote in 2011. Just in case of curiosity for bizarre visions...

otacke's picture

I didn't want to start a discussion about perfect tools either :-) Even given your examples, I simply cannot say how a new content type should look and feel.

Regarding licensing, it's probably best to attach the legal information as close to the content as possible. The central idea of OER is to foster the reuse of content (not just access to it), so a note on the page can get lost easily if someone only reuses part of it, e.g. one H5P content type. Legally, for the scope of the note, it probably depends on which law applies, but in general an "if not explicitly stated otherwise" clause might be good enough to make it clear that the note is meant for all content.

The technical stuff just meant: Could be done, but if done right (from a security driven point of view), you'll lose some/most of the learning analytics "fun".

akud's picture

Ok, thanks. If the legal information has to be attached "as close to the content as possible", I'll put it into the post instead of into the footer.

The "if not explicitly stated otherwise" clause sounds also interesting and useful.

If you had any example, suggestion or any other hint from your experience in the open education movement, to me it'd be valuable.




otacke's picture


I know tons of resources about that subject, but it's all in German. There's even a particular OER information website with documents, news, etc. If you have some means to "understand" it, the brochure Offene Bildungsressourcen (OER) in der Praxis (Open Educational Resources in practice) is probably a good starting point -- and it's openly licensed, so feel free to create and share translations ;-)

One platform that I know of, that uses the "unless stated otherwise" phrasing is oncampus, e.g. https://www.oncampus.de/weiterbildung/moocs/project-management-and-future-of-work?lang=en


akud's picture

I'm gonna have a look, but just to make sure...

The Offene Bildungsressourcen (OER) in der Praxis doesn't open. I've found this doc  by John H. Weitzmann.


otacke's picture

Yup, that's the right one. I'll correct the link above just in case.

I also need this feature with H5P. 

I bth need a vertical arrangement of "Drag the words" - so It's more naturally to see as a sentence for word order excersises:

It could also be great if there was a option to make two different word order arrangement possible as the correct solution. I'll just make an example with Danish (maybe you norwegian developers understand that :)

In Danish It would be possible in many case to have two option fx:
I morgen laver jeg min H5P-øvelse // Jeg laver min H5P-øvelse i morgen

So if there could be a way to indicate two equal valid ordering that would be great.

Regarding ordering of sentences there is actually a moodle plugin doing exactly that (and you can do sentences as well).


You can see the layout in the end of this video



otacke's picture

Hi kabr!

I'm from Germany and still learning Norwegian, don't confuse me ;-)

You can actually have a vertical layout with Drag-the-Words by putting just one solution per line, but you're correct: alternative sequences are not supported and I am not sure if there's a good way to add this feature given the way the editor works now.


Thanks, Oliver
As you can see it was what I actually did in the exercise below (setting them up in a column).

It's fine but it would be possible to do a more effective design for such language exercises :)

The moodle plugin (ordering) have the possibility to choose vertical or horisontal layout. 
I just prefer H5P as I can embed them other places as well ...

otacke's picture

We absolutely do not mind if someone comes up with a content type tailored to this particular use case :-)

Do you mean you would like some input on how a design could be? Or that others developed the exercise type?


otacke's picture

Hi kabr!

A set of user stories would help, as would sketches, etc. However, it would probably take quite some time to develop it if we have to squeeze it into our schedules. That's why I like to point out that H5P is not "our product", but it is (intended to be) a community project.

We are well aware that we really need to brush up our documentation and processes to facilitate this idea, but it's possible to contribute to H5P in many ways already. Regarding the development of new content types, you could of course do it yourself using our developer guide. There's more to it than coding however! I already mentioned creating sketches, user stories, etc., but you could also just spread the word and raise demand and interest, so someone developer might pick up the idea. You could also try to raise funds (with other people) and pay some developers: there's crowdfunding on kickstarter for instance, bounties as used on e.g. openbounty, etc.

Maybe I should put there thought into a better structured blog post ...


Thanks a lot, Oliver. 
I will consider what the best way is. Maybe my school could finance the specific exercise type that I would like to use :)
Otherwise I'll try to find time to do some user stories and sketches !


otacke's picture

Hi Kaspar!

You're welcome! I gave a (too) quick talk about contributing to open source projects even if you don't know how to code last year. I added English subtitles last weekend. Maybe there's some more inspiration in it.


In this case I would also like to have the possibility to just make one exercises with two ordering possibilities ...