I have got into +Edmodo in a big way recently. I have been exploring the possibilities of running a telecollaborative* project and @edmodo seemed like a good place to start the process of learning how to get students from different countries to talk to each other. However, before I got going on my exciting collaborative project I wanted to get to grips properly with Edmodo. Last year I had used this tool to set quizzes for different classes which could then be graded and results stored in the system. I was also able to award badges. This all worked quite well but I was not enamoured with the results and I knew that I could exploit this tool more effectively.
So, in order to delve deeper and scratch below the surface of what edmodo can do I focused on the collaborative aspect of Edmodo. I had noticed the ease with which students communicated with each other via the forum. So, with this in mind and with a view to organising a telecollaborative project with a school abroad, I set up a couple of projects with different year groups. My first project that I have set up is an in-class project with Year 9. Initially we completed a couple of quizzes which got assessed immediately and provided me not only with students' marks but also a break down of where students went wrong. I then allowed students to write about what they were going to do that evening with a celebrity of their choice. There were two goals. Firstly, to use the near future and secondly, to assess the work of another student in the class. The students took both challenges seriously:
Some students provided their friends with clear advice on how to improve, others were not so aware of what needed to be corrected. Thus, the results were varied in terms of quality of assessment but in terms of motivation, there were clearly no problems. My email box filled up over the week with notifications from Edmodo that students were replying to each other's posts (this notification function can be turned off, incidentally).
I have replied to some of the posts and encouraged the students' efforts but I am taking a back seat in this because when my students start a real collaborative exchange with students from a school in France I want to encourage fluency and intercultural understanding. In addition, the aim is for students to correct each other's mistakes.
Incidentally, as well as the excellent eTwinning site where I have found one partner school, I have also found another partner school via an Overseas Twinning Group on Edmodo:
"[Students need to be] prepared to connect with their peers and the world by understanding both the technical and the social demands of working with web 2.0 tools".**
Essentially, this first few weeks with Edmodo have allowed me to get used to the platform and importantly for my students to acclimatise to this way of working. I am embarking on some exciting projects. Edmodo will be the platform for one of the projects and I know that this time preparing my students (and me) to use Edmodo effectively has been time well spent.
If you have not already done so, check out Edmodo which, incidentally, you can access on your tablet as well. Let me know your thoughts in the comments box below - I would love to hear about your projects.
Footnotes*“…internationally-dispersed learners in parallel language classes use Internet communication tools such as e-mail, synchronous chat, threaded discussion, and MOOs (as well as other forms of electronically mediated communication), in order to support social interaction, dialogue, debate, and intercultural exchange.” Belz, J. A. (2003a). From the special issue editor. Language Learning & Technology, 7(2), 2-5. Retrieved