Tuesday, July 21, 2015

The New ClassDojo Groups Provides an Innovative Tool for Collaboration

If you are like most teachers, you are enjoying your well deserved summer break.
ClassDojo released a new feature today.
And, if you are like most teachers, you are also checking in with Pinterest every so often to pin some new ideas to keep your class fresh and exciting for the next years crew. Today, I want to share a great pin for your board that my favorite classroom management and communication tool has launched that has amazing potential to up the anti and help make managing your group work, PBL work and teamwork to a whole new level.

This morning, ClassDojo launched a brand new grouping feature to their already amazing classroom management platform called ClassDojo GroupsClass Dojo Groups allows teachers to digitally organize groups of students into any number of teaming categories to award all of them at once. 

If you are familiar with ClassDojo, you know that just by selecting multiple students this same thing can be accomplished. I see a few aspects of this update that support a positive classroom culture that were not as easily achieved by just selecting multiple students.

  • Students can visually see themselves in a group that was either named by the teacher or named by the group itself, cementing the idea of teamwork. We all know how important visuals are, especially for our youngest learners. The avatar associated with each student is reflected in the team box. If you are a teacher that allows kids to change avatars, then again, that visual representation of themselves is seen in their group.

Students can be placed in multiple groups at once.Here I have my test class split in half (Thunder/Lightning),and another group with a few kids from each of those groups.

  • Students can be placed in multiple groups at a time. Teachers can create individual table groups for all their students, as well as placing those same kids in different reading groups, different PBL groups, or even by odd/even numbers (as I can picture myself doing for transition challenges).
  • Special groups can be made for specific data tracking for intervention or enrichment supports. There may be 3 children that a teacher needs to track on task behavior for hourly. How motivating will it be to let those kids know they are working collectively to stay on task and will be rewarded with a positive point for each hour of on task work!
  • If you share your class with other teachers in your building, those teachers can also see your teams and award them. If you share your class with your Art teacher, and she would like teams, why not add the Art table teams or Music teams according to that teachers needs. What an amazing communication tool for parents for those classes they may not always get feedback from.
  • And finally, if you gamify your review lessons, you can do it in ClassDojo Groups! Create a lesson review classroom, create your gamer groups, and play your review games. Points can be awarded and challenges can be made for units, quarters, or whatever works for you. How much fun is that!

I am sure there are a ton of creative uses for this exciting new feature the ClassDojo team has brought to us. I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas. Oh, and don't forget to pin this to your "classroom" board for next school year! I know you are going to just love this new feature!