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Introduction to Edmodo

Steve Woods
Instructional Technology Specialist
Connect with me on Edmodo, Twitter

What is Edmodo?

Edmodo is an educational network that leverages the social and sharing elements of Web
2.0. Using many of the same features most have come to expect in other social sharing
networks like Facebook and Twitter, Edmodo lets teachers and students collaborate online,
share content, access homework assignments and join online discussions in a safe
environment.





Why is Edmodo safer?

Edmodos anonymous groups are created by its users, and members are invited in. Unless you
freely advertise your groups unique code, you will only communicate with people of your
choosing. Classes that use Edmodo will consist of only the owner/teacher, co-teachers and
students, as well as parents who utilize a separate and limited observational interface.

Is Edmodo similar to Blackboard?

Edmodo should be viewed as collaborative-ware, which is different than online class course-
ware. Although Edmodo can support a classroom environment, it is not designed to virtually
recreate it online (like Moodle or Blackboard can) - although some teachers have come pretty
far in that regard. That said, there are features of Edmodo you can use to your advantage in
supporting online learning, 21st Century Skills, PBL and Common Core.

What if my kids only have smartphones?

Edmodo also has a mobile app for Apple or Android devices, allowing teachers and students to
post and reply to notes and add images, files or links to their groups, while on the run. The app
is limited on mobile devices; however basic functions exist to interact with groups. Remember,
however, that you can log in and use Edmodo through your mobile devices browser (Safari,
Chrome or Firefox) to obtain more functionality.

How do schools use Edmodo now?

Here are examples of ways that Edmodo can be used in an educational environment.

Professional Learning Community (PLC) - create a group and invite others you collaborate
with, to share files and keep a record of conversations.

Online file sharing tool - add multimedia files to your personal Edmodo library (unlimited
space!!!), then create folders to share with your special collaborative groups.

Book study groups/discussions - create a group for a book or reading group, using the
content stream to discuss. Share lesson plans and develop project-based learning activities.

Event-based communities - One is Election 2012 designed to provide information on teaching
about the Presidential debates and the election. The community has become a haven for
sharing teaching resources built around the concept of ensuring students understand the role
and structure of political discussions.

Enhanced field trips - Let your students use the Edmodo app on their smartphones while on a
field trip. Ask them to post comments and information in the content stream, and share photos,
links or documents related to the trip.

Heres an online presentation with 20 ways you can use Edmodo in the classroom...

Desirable Features/Tools

Joining is free! - As a teacher, you can join at http://www.edmodo.com and easily obtain a free
account. If your school or district has created a special domain through Edmodo, you may be
asked to login using a customized URL (Internet address) with a unique school code. Joining a
domain gives the domain administrator the ability to provide Apps Store funds, to reset your
password if needed, view your gradebook, and more.



If you are already a member of Edmodo, and are asked to join a domain, joining will change
nothing on Edmodo for you if you move over your existing account. You will preserve your
groups, connections, files, etc.

Groups - Groups are the heart and social soul of Edmodo. Groups are self-contained small,
collaborative environments created within Edmodo by its users, and shared with other teachers,
parents or students. Groups can be either publicly listed so anyone who finds the Group code
or invitation link can join, or by invitation only if you need privacy (such as with a student-based
class Group).

Groups can be static read only environments, where you share materials and your members
consume them, without providing feedback. This works great for file sharing for a conference or
event. For a more collaborative approach, however, let members of your Groups know they
also can share their resources and provide commentary as desired.



How do I create a Group?

After logging into Edmodo, click on the Home page button
(upper left - looks like a house). Youll see your profile pic and
name on the upper left corner. Under this is a Groups section,
with a small plus sign in a circle. Click on this small icon to
either create a Group, or to join an existing Group created by
another user.

When you create your group, you must name it. Additionally,
choose appropriate grades or grade ranges if needed, and a
subject area.

Advanced features let you choose whether to make the Group
read-only and provide the option to moderate posts and replies
in the group.

Once you make the group, you
will be provided a unique Group code for joining, which can be
changed (or reset) in your groups settings. This code is
generated at random, and cannot be customized, although you
can reset the code at any time to get a new code.



Security via anonymity - There are tens of thousands of previously created Edmodo groups
out there, but they are not visible to you. In order to join someones created group, you will
need to be provided their Group code. This level of anonymity is one way to ensure your Group
stays private. Another is through removing any undesired members or even locking (or turning
off) your Group code.

Once youve joined a group, you can interact with and collaborate with all of its members.

So what kinds of tools can I use in Edmodo?

There are a number of specialized tools in each Edmodo Group that can be used by the teacher
or students, depending on their role in the system.

Sharing Tools - There are many tools teachers can use to share information in an Edmodo
group, including notes, assignments, quizzes, polls, files and even apps.



Notes

The default tool for sharing in Edmodo is the Note, similar in nature to a status update
on Facebook or a tweet on Twitter. To submit a note to the Groups content stream,
click in the text box and begin typing. The top section is where you type in your
update. Notes can be quite lengthy, and you can use the enter button on your keyboard
to create paragraph breaks in your Note, if needed.

The middle section of a Note is where the note will be sent to. Notes are shared
with groups you are a member of, or to individuals you have connected with. If you are
in a particular Group, it will default to be shared with that Group. You can click on the x
on the Group name to remove it, if you wish to send the Note to another Group or as a
Direct Message to a particular person(s). You can add more than one Group name
here.

The bottom section of a Note is where you can attach or schedule a note. A note
can contain an uploaded attachment, a file from your Edmodo library, or a link to a web
site, web page, or web-based file. Depending on what you add to your note, it could
have text, hyperlinks, and even multimedia documents attached to it.

Click Send to post the note, or click on the Schedule icon to post at a later date/time.

Heres an example of a Note sent to an ELA-based Group, along with an attached
hyperlink. Note the site thumbnail provided by Edmodo.



Other members of the group can respond to your posted note using the Reply button, or
simply react to it using the emoticon button. Reactions help you gauge how well a
thought is received by your class-based Group.

Alerts

Another group tool is the Alert feature, which limits you to 140 characters, similar to a
tweet. These are placed in the content stream in bold letters to draw attention to it.
These are recommended for use when needing to contact everyone in your Group.



Assignments

The Assignment tool can be used to to post assignments to your class-based Group.
Assignments can be as simple as a student text-based response and/or reply, or can
allow for downloading (and even uploading or attaching) documents and multimedia in
order to complete an assignment.



Name the assignment, provide a description and due date, then attach or embed files or
hyperlinks. Determine who to share the assignment with, and send (or schedule the
posting of) it.

Have you previously created an assignment and want to simply edit/reuse it this year?
You can use the Load Assignment button to find previous assignments. Change what
is needed, change out attachments if desired, change the due date, and send it to your
new batch of group members.

Group members or students will receive a Notification for the assignment. When they
open up an assignment, theyll see the assignments information, along with a Turn in
link, which allows them to respond and attach files or links to complete the assignment.
Only the teacher will see the turned in work.

Once turned in, the Groups teacher can give a grade to the assignments. With
Microsoft Word Docs, teachers can even mark up an assignment and return it to the
student for editing.

Quizzes

Want to test your groups knowledge on a particular subject? You can create a Quiz
and submit it to them. When creating a quiz, youll get the opportunity to name it,
choose a time limit for the quiz, and select from a multiple choice, true/false, short
answer or fill in the blank format for each question.



When you are done building your quiz, you select whom to share it with, and submit it to
the content stream.

When your group members take the quiz, Edmodo will indicate how many questions are
left, and provide students a Submit button. You can determine whether or not youll let
your student see the auto-graded result. Questions auto-graded by Edmodo will show
up as small pie charts, so you can see the breakdown of individual questions. You can
even export your grades to Excel, to add into a more formalized grading program.

Questions are individually saved, so you can pull them back up later when making future
quizzes.




Polls

Polls are very useful, and are used to create a question to query a Group. Polls are
anonymous, and will automatically produce a chart of results based on responses.



Group members can see the poll results real-time. Polls can also be scheduled to be
sent out at a particular hour of the day.

Documents and Libraries

Your Edmodo account comes with its own resource library, where you can upload documents
youll keep to view, or share with groups you create over time. Its up to you whether you
choose to share a resource from your Library with a Group or just to a particular individual.

You choose how organized you want your library to be. To organize your library, you can create
folders to store your documents in. You can even share entire folders with your groups, so that
any new document placed therein is automatically shared as well.

How do I add something to my Library?



To add documents to your library, simply choose your library icon at the top of the screen and
click Add to Library to upload documents or add hyperlinks to particular webpages. Use the
window that pops up to either add a document (up to 100 MB max per document) or click on the
Link tab to add in a website or webpages hyperlink and title.



There is no upper limit to the amount of storage you use on Edmodo. You can upload a
gigabyte or terrabyte worth of files to store, access and share.

One cool feature of adding a website to your Library, is that Edmodo will try to capture the name
of the page or site for you, so you dont have to come up with its title. You can always change
the title if you want a different one...

How do I see or make my folders?

When in any group, you can view the folders shared with the Group by clicking on the tab on the
left-hand side. You can see your Librarys folders by first visiting the Library by clicking on the
Library icon at the top of your screen, then clicking in your folders.



Click on the New Folder button to create and name new folders.

There are two methods to add a document or hyperlink to a folder:

1. Upload or add it to your library first using the Add to Library button. Then click on the
checkbox in the upper left corner of the document in your library, and choose the folder using
the icon of a folder with a (+) sign in it to choose the folder to hold the document or link.



2. To add a document or link directly into a particular folder, click on the Folders tab in the
Library, then click to open a particular folder. Click on Add to Folder button to add directly to
that folder. The item you add will still also be displayed loosely in the Library itself.

Can someone else add to my folder?

Depends on their role in a Group. Anyone who has been made a co-teacher in your Group can
add items (links or documents) to any folder in the Group, including the folders youve shared
with the Group.




How do I make someone a Co-Teacher?

To make someone a co-teacher, visit the Group, click on Members, and choose the Group role
next to a members name. If you have a lot of members in your Group, click on the Members
button, then use the Search Members box to find a particular member in that Group.

Attached to Posts

Missed a Group-based discussion and want to see every document or link that was shared by
members of the Group? The Attached to Posts tab under Library lets you see all multimedia
shared in posts in Groups you belong to.



To filter by a particular Group, use the All Groups or Filter By drop-down menus on the upper
right corner.

Integration with Google! Why re-upload items youre already housing online on Google
Drive? Simply connect your Google Drive account to your Library using the simple interface
included in the Library menu, and you have instant access to anything you put in Google Drive.
Youll see a Google Docs link on the left-hand side, allowing you to look through your Google
Drive for anything youve stored there.



Once youve connected your Google Drive account, you can select items and share them with
the folders youve made on Edmodo. You can find items in your Drive folders using the Google
Folders drop-down (upper right corner).

Using the Google Docs integration tools, you can share your Docs with your Edmodo folders,
Groups, and even directly with other users. Just make sure your Docs permissions match the
desire to share a particular Google Doc resource!

Sharing a folder from your Library with Group(s) - You can share any folder youve created
with any number of Edmodo Groups you belong to. Whenever you remove an item from a
shared folder (or add an item), that items availability changes correspondingly for the group.

To share a folder with a Group, visit that Group by clicking on its name on Edmodos home page
(left side under your profile). In the Group, click on the Folders button on the left side.



Click on the Add Folder button (right side column in upper corner). A window will open, showing
all available folders from your Library. Check each folder to share with the Group, then click on
the OK button. Add or remove items to folders as desired, to share them with their
corresponding Group(s).

Small (or Sub-) Groups - You can break down your collaboration into
smaller groups (or divide up a learning environment by topics or
weeks) using the Small Groups feature. This essentially creates sub-
groups, which can have their own resources and discussion strings.
Small Groups can also be used for differentiated learning
environments.

After creating a Group, visit it, and click on the Create a Small Group
button, located on the left-hand side. Create and name your Small
Groups as needed.

Small Groups cannot be joined by a Group member. Members of Small Groups are physically
placed therein by the Groups teacher owner. A Groups teacher can then remove or swap
members of Small Groups as desired to meet class needs.

The Small Groups feature can prove helpful during
conferences or professional development sessions. You can
add all members to each particular sub-group, then
physically break up your attendees cover different aspects of
the training. One of the members can then create notes to
share their results in the appropriate sub-group.

The Planner (Calendar feature)

The Planner allows you to create events to share with your group, such as meeting dates,
assignment dates, or events that could affect the groups mission.

To see your Edmodo Planner, click on the calendar icon located on
the control strip on the right-hand side of your screen.

Youll be provided a calendar that shows all upcoming tasks and
scheduled assignments for all Groups you belong to or own.



You can add tasks to the calendar, to remind yourself of upcoming items to take care of.




How do I see a Planner for a particular Group?

Although the default view of the Planner is for ALL Groups you are
attached to, you can use the Everything drop-down menu (upper right
corner) to narrow the view to a particular Group you own or belong to.

The little grey cog wheel icon next to this drop-down menu will allow you
to either print the Planner you are looking at, or export it to an ics file, for
later import into your desktop calendar program, sch as Microsoft
Exchange.

To back out of the Planner, click on the x on the top right corner of the black bar at the top of
the screen...

Apps

The Edmodo Apps Store has a variety of apps that can add additional tools or features to your
Edmodo groups. These have been created by third-party vendors or organizations, and are
designed to take advantage of your Groups memberships, assignments, Library and more.

You can locate the Apps store by clicking on the shopping cart icon on the control strip on the
right-hand side of your screen.



Apps categories include Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies, Computer Technology
and many more. Edmodo apps work differently, depending on how they were designed. Some
have interactive, full-motion elements while others are text-based, requiring input. Some have
homework assignments, while others are in-class only.

Apps in the Edmodo Store tend to be Group-based, meaning they are purchased for use in a
single Group. Once you purchase the app, you will be provided the opportunity to choose which
Group to use it with.

Many apps have limited licensing periods, such as for a single school year, so make sure to
read the fine print before making a purchase.

Choose an app, pay for it (if not free) then download and install it to get the new feature set
offered by the app. Each app has its own set of instructions for use.

How do I see or use an app once Ive downloaded it?

After purchasing and installing an app, you can find it using the Apps Launcher, which is the
grid-shaped icon on the control strip on the right-hand side of your screen. Clicking on the Apps
Launcher will show you all apps you have access to.



To launch an app, click on it, and follow any directions the app provides you. You can learn
more about a particular app in its community by visiting the Community tab on the Edmodo
Home page.




Public Groups and Communities

Are there any publicly advertised Edmodo Groups I can join?

There are a variety of Edmodo Groups whose join codes have been publicly advertised, as the
teachers of those Groups want input and membership from anyone interested. Here are links to
a few lists of publicly-listed Edmodo Groups:

MentorMobs Teacher-Created Public Groups

Bianca Hewes List of Underground Edmodo Groups - youll need to use the links to connect
with the group owners and ask to join.

Communities

Edmodo hosts a variety of subject-oriented larger Groups, known as
Communities. These are open to any Edmodo user, and can be followed
(and un-followed) freely. Many of these Communities have tens of
thousands of members sharing great resources and information freely and
on a daily basis.

The Communities section is located on your Edmodo Home page, on the
lower left. Click on Show All to see all Communities you belong to.

To join a Community, click on the Discover New Communities link, located
on the upper right corner, above the list of Communities you belong to.



You can then click to Follow any content area-based Community, such as the Math or
Language Arts Communities.


Okay, Ive Followed a Few. How do I see them?

To view the content of any Community youve followed, simply visit the Edmodo Home page,
and click on it in the Communities section (lower left). If you dont see it listed, click on Show
All to see all Communities you belong to. Click on the Community name to see its content
stream.

Suggestions

Also listed in the Discover New Communities area, is the Suggestions tab, which will provide
suggestions on Edmodo apps to try out, teachers you may wish to connect with, and
suggested resource links. Suggestions are all based on apps youve previously previewed or
installed, content youve shared, or other Edmodo teachers youve connected with.



Publisher Communities

Also in the Discover New Communities area, you can connect with Publisher Communities,
which are based on third-party vendors or organizations that have provided apps to use with
Edmodo. Learn how to use an app, find support for your apps, and talk to other teachers using
the apps you are using.



Simply choose to Follow any publisher youd like.

Browsing Content Areas

While in the Discover New Communities area, you can see whats being shared based on a
particular topic of interest, or based on what you are currently teaching. Use the Find Content
search box or Browse Topics link to find related content.