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Edmodo is a free social learning network for teachers, students, schools and districts. It is a safe and easy way to connect, exchange ideas, share content as well as access homework, grades and school notices. Edmodo offers the ability to create a blended learning environment, where students can interact with each other, and ask questions of you – from school or at home. Learning can and will happen anywhere, anytime. An added benefit is that teachers can join other like-minded teacher groups on Edmodo to start or build up your Personal Learning Network (PLN) and experience anytime professional development.
The Edmodo platform ensures student safety and privacy because it is a closed environment and no private information or email address is required for students to join. Students join only by an invitation from their teacher. There is no private chat between students – all communications are archived, and teachers have full management and control over what is posted.
Parents can also be special group members – once a student has joined a class group, a Parent Code can be generated that will allow a parent access to the student’s account, as well as be able to see all of the communications between the teacher and student, upcoming assignments, and grades for their student.
Task: Create an account on Edmodo.com. Click the blue ‘I’m a Teacher’ button, and follow the steps. You may have to create your school if it’s not listed in the options.
The first thing you’ll need to do as a teacher is to create your first group or class for your students to be able to join in. When you create your a group in Edmodo, a 6-digit code and a unique “Join URL” is automatically generated for you to share with your students. The code and link will automatically lock after 14 days, but you can unlock it to add new students anytime.
I’d first like you to experience Edmodo from a student’s perspective to get a feel for what you can do with this tool. Once you are logged in, I’d like you to join my SEDC Edmodo Support group.
Task: Join my group using the following Group Code: sgzyq8 by clicking the ‘+’ next to Groups on the left and clicking ‘Join.’ Or, you can just follow this link and request to join.
Now that you are students or members of my group, let’s show you how you can manage your students from the ‘Members’ group link. You can view all of the group members and quickly see their username and monitor their progress with posted grades or earned badges. Under the ‘More’ drop-down, you can change a student’s access, view their Parent Code, change their password or quickly remove them from the group.
The main way you’ll interact with your Group is with the different available Post types. Click the ‘Home’ icon and then the name of the group you’d like to communicate to on the left. New posts are written above the latest post. You can post:
- Notes – Post comments, questions and general information here. You can attach a file, a link or a Library item to each note. You can also schedule a note to be posted at a future date.
- Alerts – These are important updates for your group. They’ll be shown in bold in the Posts area.
- Assignments – Upload assignment documents, link to Google Documents, or simply describe the task at hand for your kids. Students can submit their assignments by clicking the ‘Turn In’ button in the Assignment post. You can grade their work right in Edmodo!
- Quizzes – Build quizzes here, using multiple choice, T/F, short answer, fill-in-the-blank and matching type questions.
- Polls – get immediate feedback and results with Polls. Use a poll question as an exit ticket, or send a Poll to your parents for their input.
Task: Investigate the different sample posts in the SEDC Edmodo Support Group. Reply to my Note, read the Alert, do the quick Assignment, Take a quick Utah Facts Quiz, and answer the Poll question.
Back under the ‘Home’ tab, you’ll see ‘Communities’ beneath your Groups on the left. Communities are where you can connect with other teachers on Edmodo who do the same things you do and teach the same things you teach. Have a question about how to improve your instruction of a certain topic? Follow that subject and request posting rights to ask questions of this vast community of like-minded teachers. You probably picked a few communities to join when you created your account, but you can select ‘Show All’, then ‘Discover New Communities’. This is a tremendous way to build your PLN, get help and participate in your own hyper-focused professional development!
Also, the ‘Support’ community is always there to help out if you get stuck or have problems, 24 hours a day. You can also visit the Edmodo Help Center anytime to access an online Users Manual, webinars, FAQ’s and more.
If you find an educator who is saying interesting things or posting great resources, you can click on their name in a Community post to learn more about them. By clicking the green ‘Add Connection’ button, you can request to follow and collaborate with that person. Alternatively, you can save a post and comment thread for later reference. Hover over the main post and you’ll see a gear icon to the right. Click it to share the post, copy the link to the post, or add it to your Library for reference.
Your Library is accessed from the open book link/tab in the blue bar at the top of the page.
Task: Join a Community or two, and request Posting Rights.
Now, let’s take some time to create your groups in Edmodo. Create a new group for each class period or subject you teach, or you can just make one group to get going. Be sure to check out the options in the Advanced tab to pre-set student permissions and post moderation options, as well as a description of the group (use this space for a permanent reminder or class slogan!)
Task: Create your Group(s) by clicking the ‘+’ next to Groups on the left and clicking ‘Create’
Each new group has links to quickly view posts, folders and members.
Where do go from here? We have just scratched the surface of what Edmodo has to offer. With the time remaining, make sure to investigate:
- Store (shopping cart icon) – add apps and services, both free and paid, that will enhance your Edmodo experience.
- Manage (gear icon) – Manage your apps, purchase store credit, find suggested apps, view your account history, get help and more.
- App Launcher (9-square icon) – quickly launch your installed apps.
- Progress Viewer (EKG icon) – view grades on assignments and the badges your students have earned.
- Award Badges – students can be motivated by the smallest things. Check out how to create and award badges for your students.
- Discover (compass icon) – view suggested apps, suggested links and search for content.
- Library (open book icon) – view all of your saved content and posts.
- Notifications (bell icon) – see what’s happened since your last visit to Edmodo