Will It Work?

I’m trying something new tomorrow.

Really new, not just variation on a theme new.

I’m teaching my class in Florida while I am away in Georgia. See, I had to take a week off of school when my step-father had surgery. Couldn’t be helped and family comes before career any day. Still, it’s the week before the state writing test and I like to do a day to acknowledge how far students have come. I hate doing that the day before the test, though. Too much pressure on the kids as it is.

So I’ve turned to Edmodo.

They have a chat service that hasn’t been blocked by our state. It allows teachers to create secure chat rooms that students use for discussion. It also asks for a bare minimum of information from students. I took my classes to the library to show them how to use the service one day last week.  They liked it a great deal and caught on quickly.

But I’ve never done this before. Up until now, teaching while I was out of school wasn’t an option. If you had to take a day off school, you just left the best sub plan you could. True, I couldn’t do this all week, I am here for a purpose, but if I could teach just one day…

So many questions. Will I be able to keep my students involved in a discussion when I’m not there to encourage them? Will I be able to know who’s participating and who’s just lurking? Will I be able to keep kids on task when I’m not there to give them The Look? Will our discussion be effective or just a fun activity?

Will it work?


1 Comment

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One response to “Will It Work?

  1. I love Edmodo; blogged about it here: http://teachingthatsticks.blogspot.com/2010/02/using-edmodo-in-classroom-five-days.html. Like you, I worry about who will use and who will lurk, so I’ve left it to them. Some are power users (multiple times a day) while others are non-users. Sometimes I’ll post an open-ended question to which they must reply as part of homework, but I hate to force the issue. And some of my sixth graders are (illegally) on Facebook, so Edmodo is Fisher Price to them, and they won’t go near it.

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