This summer, I was reintroduced to Edmodo at the DEN LC Symposium. I first learned about Edmodo at another conference but never saw it as more than another Twitter and I didn’t see the point. But at the symposium, we actually used it. We created small groups for each session, had discussions, added links, made connections, and had a permanent place to come back to for information. I began to see the uses for my classroom.
For those of you who have never seen Edmodo, it is a chatroom that only allows in those who are given the code to join. It is not public unless you choose to make it so. When my students first saw it, they all thought it was Facebook. I guess with the colors and basic layout, it does have that look but the room is much tighter and more personal than Facebook.
So now we use it in school. We are part of a pilot Elementary Flat Classroom Project, where each child and teacher has an account in Edmodo. The children have been introducing themselves to each other and saying hello. We have small group pages for each group in the project where the children have discussions about the project itself. And I use it for book discussions in my classroom. The children each have a small group based on the book they are reading in book talk groups. In Edmodo, they begin and carry on discussions about the characters, the symbolism in the books, the vocabulary they find, and the predictions they are making. And I can monitor all of these discussions. I add my own comments to push their thinking. And if needed, I can remove comments that are inappropriate or even remove a student from the site. Thankfully, I have not had to do that.
Think about using Edmodo in your classroom. It is highly motivating, easy to use, and free. What more could you want from a Web 2.0 tool?