At the beginning of the term I had been given 7 grade 5 students that struggle with their reading, to work with.

At the same time as this happened I had been delving deeper into twitter and various web tools for education which lead me to come across ‘Edmodo‘.

Edmodo can be described as a sort of educators ‘Facebook’.

I began by mucking around with it for a few days, logged in both as a teacher and a student to see how some of the features work and to better understand it. I then set up a group for my students to join.

I anticipated the students joining to be quite difficult to start with as I was dealing with students that had some learning difficulties and hadn’t had a great deal of exposure or experience with the internet and the computers.

It went better than I had hoped and all joined the group fairly quickly without much fuss. Which in hindsight has a lot to do with how easy the site makes it to join.

The Lesson

I had prior to the lesson posted a ‘poll’, a ‘comment’, some instructions and 2 videos for the students to explore and repsond too.

The lesson progressed and by the time the hour was up I had all 7 students in the Edmodo group, each had voted on the poll  (‘Who is your favourite character in Romeo & Juliet’) & left a reason why, each student had also watched the videos and responded to at least 1 of the 2 questions I had posted on them.

I was very pleased with the reactions I got from the students and even more pleased when two of the home group teachers told me that some of the students had be talking about the edmodo group for the rest of the morning!

I have since made a list of guidelines for the students to follow when using Edmodo.

I have also been thinking of other more effective ways I could use Edmodo in the classroom:

  • I would like to use it with writing. I imagine having the students on the laptops using ‘Word’ in the editing or even as early as the draft phase of writing, getting them to digitally submit their piece of writing through an Edmodo group.
  • I also had an example given to me from Josh whom I follow on twitter (@JPAghion).  Josh told me he uses Edmodo to support his student’s blogging. He set up the group for his students to :
    • Discuss various topics they might like to blog about
    • Draft questions
    •  Promote their new posts for comments.

Overall I love Edmodo! The fact that it has similarities to Facebook which makes it feel familiar and easy to use. The students also pick up on this point quickly and are more enthusiastic to use it.

Some of the main features are:

–          Polls

–          Ability to embed videos, pictures and sound

–          Hyperlink

–          An assignment section

–          Ability to create multiple groups

–          Security is good

–          Teacher is able to see and edit everything

These I’m sure are just a few of the more obvious features and there are many more things I will discover I can do with it e.g. Connecting with other edmodo groups and exploring the ‘Parent’ function.

I recommend you give it a go!

Have you used Edmodo before or currently use it?

I would love to hear what you use it for & how you use it!

 

 

Cheers

Mick 🙂

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