Monday, March 5, 2012

Edmodo - A PLN for you, your class, school, or district.




It seems like you can't go anywhere in the world of educational technology without someone mentioning Edmodo.  I have to be honest, until recently I did not understand what all the hype was about.  I primarily work with Middle and High School teachers to integrate technology.  I always felt that the "facebook like" experience would not be as appealing to students that actually used social networking.  For that age group, I tend to think that content creation is king (reference this post).

All my previous ideas about what Edmodo was came crashing down when I attendended FETC this year.  Edmodo was a major sponsor of the conference and as a result, each of the sessions had a separate Edmodo group for discussion during the session, and to encourage participants to "continuing the conversion" after the conference was over.   I now saw Edmodo in a whole new light.  It could be used for professional development, networking within the district and so much more.

Getting Started

Whether your thinking about using Edmodo with your class, for yourself, or as a district,  Edmodo holds your hand through the entire process.  Outstanding resources for each of implementation models can be found at http://help.edmodo.com.

While Edmodo is an IDEAL tool for 1:1, it can still be a tremendously useful collaboration tool for a typical classroom.  This is how I conduct a training to introduce teachers to this tool.

1.  I download this PowerPoint from the Edmodo help sectioned mentioned above.  I modified a few of the slides to fit my needs better, and removed the animations (not a fan of objects flying in).  While I dislike PowerPoint for instruction as a general rule, I think it works well here to guide the session in a logical format.  Additionally, with all the screen shots I do not need to switch back and forth from the presentation to the application to demonstrate what the slide is trying to convey. 

2.  On the second page of this PowerPoint I embedded the video below to grab the attention of the group and as an overview of what was to come/possible.


3.  Finally, I am a huge fan of short handouts in professional development sessions.  It gives the teacher something to reference or share at a later time. They can also be easily modified to use with their students.  Long multi-page handouts can be hard to follow and waste paper in my option.  Here is a link to download the one page getting started guide that I created.  Feel free to use or modify it to fit your needs.

*Totally random plug for http://ge.tt/.  They are an awesome online file storage service.   I used it to share the handout above with you.  A teacher's digital toolbox can never have enough tools and tricks.

Please feel free to ask questions or share your own Edmodo experiences in the comments section.






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kyoutohru said...
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