Skip to main content

iDoceo - marking in the 21st century

The very title of this blog may lead you to believe that I am an out and out technophile.  To a certain extent, this is true; I love to make the most of technology in my classroom and redefine what I am able to do with my students.  Increasingly, I explore technology options for managing my own day to day planning.  I can see and understand the benefits of google drive and documents for me when communicating and collaborating with colleagues and friends.  A shared document is easy to work on and I appreciate the way I can link in photos and so on.  This being the case when I was introduced to iDoceo I could see so much potential.  It was clear to me that I could do away with my traditional mark book and use this new option.

Firstly, I was easily able to import the class spreadsheet from our school information system along with all sorts of details that I wanted to use. 

Once my mark book was in place it did not take me long to sort out my calendar linking it to my school outlook calendar so that at a glance I could see my timetable and all my other meetings. The planner is completely adaptable so it can show as many or as few days in a working week as you wish.  In addition, the planner allows you to input the exact number of lessons a day you need. Initially I did not find it completely intuitive but there are some excellent help sheets on the web page and one tweet to @idoceo sorted out any problems I had. Now,  I find that I am away and flying and I am much more in tune with the system working out how to achieve just what I need through trial and error.

As you can see from the image above it is also possible to use idoceo as the place to put your plans. I am not so taken with this at the moment largely because I need to be able to put my iPad to use for other activities in class which means I can not always have my plans open in front of me.  So, for now, I will have to stick to pen and paper for lessons plans but I do get a certain amount of pleasure from using 20th century techniques...

Once, your class list is in, then  there are a number of options available. Very usefully, there is a class seating plan tab that has certainly come in handy for me, firstly for seating plans and thereafter for group work. A simple click on the appropriate tab and you can have seating in pairs or in groups of three or you can work out your own groupings.  There is also a dice tool that will randomly select the next person to answer your question.

Entering grades is easy too and there are all sorts of tools to help you work out averages for a piece of work by class or averages over a period of time for each student.  iDoceo is really everything and more than you could ask for in an iPad mark book app.  Your marks can be exported and printed out in a format that suits you ready for parents' evenings and tutor meetings.  I have only begun to list the features here.  Consider, for a moment, all those icons that can be annotated with your own notes (I use mine to highlight individual learning needs), or the ability to write a note about each student and the areas they need to work on next time to ensure progress.   

There really is so much to praise and I have only just got started.  I have not told you about storing a photo of your student's work and sending them a message about it, or recording a message for them.  Nor, have I mentioned the resources board - another excellent feature.  The picture below gives you a good idea what that might be about.

iDoceo is certainly an app that I will continue to use for managing my classes.

What are your thoughts on classroom management tools?  Do you use iDoceo?  I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments box below.

Popular posts from this blog

Does education really need technology?

There may be many with a view on what makes for a good lesson.  Most would not argue with the ideas clearly expounded upon by Hattie and Yates (1) that a good lesson starts with an initial review of knowledge, moves on to a formal presentation, guided practice, initial feedback, independent practice and a follow-up review.  In terms of my own practice this is a model that I follow.  Not via any particular tools because I know that my target audience need variety and must not settle into any type of formulaic process.  Thus, I follow the steps but use different methods. Far be it for me to claim that this effective lesson cannot be achieved without technology.  Having started my teaching career over 20 years ago I know that it is possible to be an effective practitioner and deliver a lesson where progress is made using old-fashioned methods that may well have included some worksheets created on the trusty (rusty?) Banda machine.  Nor am I here to advocate that this process is more effe…

First steps with OneNote

In all my years of teaching I have always written to-do lists to help me keep organised and have had a lovely black academic diary that I have refilled each year.  However, over time I have relied increasingly on my outlook calendar for important dates and deadlines.  Last April, knowing that as a school we would be implementing Office 365 tools in the classroom in the near future, I saw that One Note would be a good place for me to start learning.  I could cut my teeth on my own Notebook and be ready to introduce Class Notebook in September.

I started using my notebook as a personal organiser in late May and by the end of June I had made my decision to give up my old ways of organising my busy working life.  As time has gone on I have become more adept at using the tool and have organised my Notebook accordingly.

Firstly some OneNote Notebook clarification:

A Notebook has sectionsWithin sections there are pagesPages can have sub-pages. In plain language, imagine that a Notebook is lik…

3 Core Principles to consider when using Tablets & Office 365

Technology must not cloud the pedagogical intent.Having made a start at explaining how I use Microsoft in Education in these three posts here (Learning to teach with Microsoft in Education, First steps with OneNote and Tags & Templates) I want to take a step back and outline my thinking behind using this technology in the first place. I am teaching at a school where a decision has been made to commit to using Microsoft Surface Pro and the suite of Office 365 tools and although this has meant learning about a new set of tools essentially I am in favour of the decision and all its implications.  In fact, use of technology to enhance what pupils are able to learn and achieve in the classroom very much fits in with my intrinsic teaching methods and my ideology.  I have posted on many occasions about technology use.  This post from last June clearly outlines how technology can have an impact on the different stages of teaching.  
As I embark on my second term with my Surface Pro and O…