Sunday, January 27, 2013

Finally back!

Wow, I can't believe I haven't posted in so long. I am so sorry about that... I had a lot of family stuff going on. BUT all is well now and I am back with exciting stuff for the new year! I can't wait to begin to share everything with all of you. I'm going to break it up into several blog posts to make it easier for everyone.

First off I hope everyone had a great holiday and enjoyed their well deserved break! I know I did and I received the best gift ever!!!! For a birthday and Christmas gift my wonderful mom bought me an iPad!! I couldn't believe it cause I had wanted one for so long and I must add that this first blog post is coming to you from the Blogger app on my new iPad. :)

Being a good teacher and a major dork the first thing I did was search for all the educational and teacher apps. Next thing I did was look up how to use it in the classroom. Well let me just tell you that I found some excellent stuff!!!

One of the first things I found was Class Dojo.  This is an amazing classroom management app, which is free - that makes it even better in my eyes. It links to the full website, which is where you will set up your account and everything.  Here's how it works. :)

First go to the website and set up your account.  Here you will be asked to add your students, which is very quick.  The program will assign each student an avatar.  You can choose the random option to speed up the enrollment portion.  That is what I did and then I used the avatars as a reward if the student reached a certain number of points they got to come in on their free time to choose a new avatar if they wanted.

After you sign up on the computer, go to the app store on your ipad or iphone and download the app for free.  The developers just did an update where the online and app version are more compatible.  When points are given or taken away a sound is made, so what I do is I walk around with my iPad adding and subtracting points, while I leave the sound on my laptop so the students can hear the sound of points being given or taken away.  This part works wonders in the room!  A sound will go off and the students will look to the laptop then get back on task.

What is also really cool about this is it comes preset with behaviors for positive and negative points, but everything is editable!  I added some of my own behaviors to be more specific according to my class expectations.

Now this gets even better!  You can email/print out weekly reports to send home to the parents. Parents and students can also log onto the site on their own to see their reports.  Honestly, I have not gotten this far into the program just yet, but I do plan to try it out before the school year is over.  Here is what the report looks like:

I just love how this breaks it down for the parents, so they can see exactly why their student earned and lost points.

Have any of you used this?  How do you use it? How do you have it set up?
I'd love to hear ideas of how else it is being used because I know I am not using it to it's full capacity right now.

Well I hope you all enjoyed my first blog post of the new year and please stayed tuned because I am fortunate enough to be testing an amazing piece of technology in my classroom for the next three weeks!!

Luv ya!

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