Social Media in the Classroom: Introduction to Edmodo

What can I say, not only do I love Edmodo but more importantly, my students love Edmodo. This school year we decided to try something new, let’s meet the students were they live…. On the Internet through the use of social media. As most schools, websites such as Facebook, Google +, MySapce, LinkedIn, etc. are blocked in the public school setting by law. While at a conference last summer, I was introduced to the FREE for schools social media site called Edmodo. I have to admit, I wasn’t sure that high school students would really jump on the bandwagon but they did… and they LOVE it!!!! They were even excited to learn that there was even an App they can download to their phones, in which they do use, for FREE. I have a lot of students who may not have a lot of access to their home computer but they always have their smart phone or tablets on them. Now, of course, I also have students that don’t have a computer at home, not a smart phone, but I am lucky to have a computer lab as my classroom in which they have access to our class on Edmodo.

If you are a teacher and have not tried Edmodo yet, I really would like you to take a look. A few words to the wise make sure you set ground rules and keep it professional. It has made my life so much easier and I know that the students are always engaged!

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Social media and the use of it in the classroom

After watching the Casey Anthony trial on TV the news/media started to talk about why this trial is so BIG and why so many people were so interested in this trail. One reason, they said, was that it was this was the “first social media trial“. It really got me thinking about the power of social media whether it be Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+, etc…. I wonder if social media is so powerful, what if we used the powers for good and not evil, and tried to use it in the classroom. I have my personal thought about if and/or when it should or shouldn’t be used. I would like to see what you all have to say and then I will tell you my thoughts.

So here’s my question for you all… What do you think?

** UPDATE **  ** UPDATE **  ** UPDATE **  ** UPDATE **  ** UPDATE **  ** UPDATE **  ** UPDATE **

After viewing the poll it does seem like many of you think that we should use social media in the classroom somehow. Now here’s the question, how, when, where, etc. There are many questions that come up. My friend Amy and I have been taking about helping students become more of a “Responsible Digital Citizen”. I think that it wouldn’t work currently because students, and as we have seen, adult, don’t know how to use social media responsibly, i.e. the Anthony Weener incidents!!! But I think if we introduce it and teach students how to use it and remind them that this is not a private diary, that anyone at any point can and will look at your entries. Now it might be just a friend reading it, or a spouse, or an employer, but rest assure it will be read. A friend once told me that if you didn’t want something published on the front page of the newspaper for all to see then don’t do it. I think the same goes here. If you don’t want EVERYONE to read it then don’t post it.

I think if teachers use the powers for good and not evil it can be a good thing, i.e. remind students of due date, extra resources for assignments, etc. But I think we as educators have to follow some other rules. If you are going to create a Facebook page make it a Fan Page instead. Post only things related to your subject area. Avoid posting things that are personal. Never friend a student. For school consider a social media site that is more for education, such as Edmodo.com instead. It is a wonderful resource and the best part it is FREE!!!

On your personal, secured page, I would even avoid friending graduates, they are still friends with your current students!!! Also keep in mind, like I stated earlier, social media is not a private diary, somehow someway it will be read. Only post things that you feel comfortable about everyone reading. Finally, as for your personally Facebook site, only friend people that you and trust personally. Twitter is more for following people you don’t know or you find interesting.

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Social Media… Facebook, Twitter, WordPress… oh my…

You’ve got the Facebook, the Facebook fan pages, the Twitter, the wordpresses, etc. so how are you updating them all? Please don’t tell me that you are going old school and logging in to each separate application and posting/updating…. if so, you must be going CRAZY!!!! Let me introduce you to a little thing called

HootSuite (http://hootsuite.com/)

go ahead take a deep breath, you life will become sooooooo much easier now that you know about this application. It allows you to update multiple Facebook pages, multiple twitter accounts as well as your wordpress blogs all in one location!!!!! aaaaahhhhhhh….. now don’t you feel better just knowing that this exists out there 🙂 Oh one more cool thing you can “publish” an update, tweet, or blog that will post in the future, for what ever reason you would want to do that.

I dare you to create an account and log in…. try it and let me know what you think.

Get My Learn ON by Caitlyn Cahill !!!!

This past week I went to Kansas City, MO for the SkillsUSA National Skills and Leadership Conference. I had two students competing this year, one in Graphic Communications and the other in Photography. I am excited to say that we won GOLD (1st) in Graphic Communications!!!!

While in Kansas City I was able to take several classes at the SkillsUSA University. One of which I wanted to share with you all was taught by Caitlyn Cahill. You can find her website at http://learn.caitlincahill.com. She has several links and presentations that you SHOULD take a look at 🙂

winning GOLD