Moodle Latest News block becomes Featured CMS frontpage block

Today I’ve been developing a concept to turn the frontpage news block into something that resembles a CMS news block (WordPress-esque).
It’s basically a clone of the Latest News Block but uses image thumbnails, removes some clutter and formats nicely.
It’s designed to go in the centre block of a Moodle theme (if the theme supports it), but works in a narrow 220px left or right column too.

The image is just a file attachment in the course forum, and the script looks for an image called “feature.jpg”.  So as long as user attaches an image of that name it displays a thumbnail of that image.

I need to refine the code and make it place a default image if the user forgets to add a file, or make it a required field.  It would be nice to add a sticky option too to stop posts from sliding down the list, but it’s a good start to making Moodle behave more like a CMS.

When I’m happy with the code I’ll release it.

Here’s a screenshot:

Featured Article Moodle Block

Featured Article Moodle Block