Thing 13 – Video Conference in my PJs!

Well, I’m not really in my PJs, but I am in my comfy chair sipping my butter toffee coffee out of my favorite china mug and I just finished watching Edmodo: Connect, Collaborate, Create from the comfort of my own home.  How great is that?!

The presenter, Martha Lackey, a bilingual instructor and campus technology liaison, uses Edmodo, a social learning network, in her 2nd-3rd grade classroom on a regular basis.  The features of Edmodo that she likes best are as follows:

  • Communities: She spends a lot of time here seeing how other educators are using technology and getting ideas for her own classroom.
  • Badges: As students join the groups that she has created, they have activities that need to be done.  Edmodo provides a badge system that the teacher can set-up to reward students for completion of tasks.
  • Quiz Builder: Ms. Mackey uses the quiz builder weekly as it is very user friendly and provides her with exactly what she needs to create, score, and grade the quizzes.

She also included comments from a high school teacher who emphasized the social aspect of Edmodo and the relevancy that she gains as a teacher with her students because of the contact they have with her outside of the classroom walls.

One of my goals in this class has been to find ways to increase my “teaching” time without actually adding any minutes to my teaching “time”.  As a music teacher, I have very limited amounts of time with the students but oh so much material I want to cover.  So, I want to use technology that  streamlines a process inside of class or enhances learning outside of class.

I really think I could use Edmodo with my 4th and 5th grade students who come to me on a quarterly basis.  All of my students have access to technology outside of school and would probably love an excuse to get online with friends.  With Edmodo, I could set up a badge system for students to accomplish some enrichment activities that we just can’t cover in our allotted time but are important nevertheless.  Kids will do almost anything for a Skittle (or a badge)!

In conclusion, I think my favorite aspect of the online video conference was that there were no glitches in the presentation!  It might be easier for me to count the number of occasions that a presentation involving technology actually went according to plan than to count the incidents where some part of the technology involved had a hiccup or just completely failed.  No waiting for computers to warm-up, or laptops to get connected to the internet, or resolving firewall issues, or … you get my point.

I am a new fan!

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