Edmodo Media Project 1 Running head: Meyer-White Interview Best Practices in Online Learning Using Edmodo Software Debra L. White Liberty University Online EDUC633 Dr. J.L. Courduff

Edmodo Media Project 2 Abstract This paper includes an interview summary between Lisa Meyer, EdS; Coordinator of Music, K-12/ Dearborn Public Schools and Wayne State University professor, and Debra White, B.S.; education graduate student at Liberty University Online regarding the use of Edmodo to achieve best practices in online education and blending learning. Keywords: online learning; Edmodo; best practices

Edmodo Media Project 3 Best Practices in Online Learning Using Edmodo Software Interview I met with Lisa Meyer and recorded an interview with her on July 27, 2013 to discuss new media I had been learning about called “Edmodo.” Lisa’s expertise and tenure in education, and specifically her certification in best practices, made her an ideal educator to consult regarding the value of this tool in learning. Our discussion began with identifying the practices of formative assessment, collaborative learning, asynchronous discussion, and integrated subject matter as the intended goals. I then walked her through a tour of my Edmodo teacher account and followed up with questions about how she would use the tool in education. Lisa double checked some of the practical communications that organize all stakeholders in the classroom and noted how they push to email or phone texting to alert teachers, students, and parents. We also talked about security features, student accountability, and keeping virtual classroom discussion on task. I, Debra, then demonstrated the library, discover, progress, and home icons and functions; and then the note, alert, assignment, quiz, and poll options. We opened up groups, small groups, and folders to see how an actual assignment flowed between teachers and students and fed into the progress page. She saw the potential to extend learning outside of the physical classroom and noted the value of asynchronous discussion within the Edmodo tool. (Meyer 2013)

Asynchronous Dialogue

Asynchronous learning seems to occur best with tools that are intended to create classrooms. Blackboard, Moodle, Edmodo, and other learning management systems allow for a basic skeleton format to build the class into while also providing space for asynchronous

Edmodo Media Project 4 communication that isn’t distracted by doubling up as a personal social app such as Twitter or Facebook. With that said; those tools have a real place in education as well; I just prefer class communications not to get buried in personal posts. (White 2013) The relationship of web 2.0 tools to education is best understood when we put technology in its proper place as “tools.” I practice with a classical education philosophy of integrating subjects and thinking skills that supersedes which tools we use. Classical education has been going on for centuries without web 2.0 and virtual spaces quite well. The reason I am passionate about CE and technology combining is to reach students in this digital age where they are at, on the one hand; and to accelerate rhetorical dialogue on the other. Computer data driven tools have an anytime anywhere capacity that allow more of this dialogue throughout our days/weeks outside the classroom. Because it can happen asynchronistically, students can take the time to develop their ideas and arguments in a well researched manner and get back to the group with a more substantive response. Meyer states that another benefit of asynchronous written discussion lies in the opportunity to draw out student responses from those usually reluctant to contribute verbally in class(Meyer 2013.) I consider the combination of web 2.0 tools and this philosophy a perfect marriage which I have named “Millennial Classicism” and Edmodo serves these goals well. (White 2013)

Edmodo Description

Edmodo is a free online social learning tool that creates both teacher and student accounts that are accessible anytime, anywhere an internet connection can be accessed. The teacher can create groups and lock them after students have joined as an added security

Edmodo Media Project 5 measure. In these groups teachers can give announcements, create assignments, quizzes and polls; and track the students’ progress in them. Small groups within groups can be made for differentiated learning and/or collaborative group-work. Materials for learning can be shared via the library and folder functions that everyone can access which can include apps. Posts can include text, audio and video as well as internet links, Google drive documents, and files from individual computers. Both teachers and students can subscribe to feeds of posts on their accounts to collaborate with others in subject matter communities. These were the features I shared with Lisa Meyer.

Integrating the tool

After pre-teaching the features and uses of the Edmodo tool and walking the students and parents through account creation; the teacher can communicate announcements and class work through posting in Edmodo. These communications will automatically push to the emails used when the accounts are set up. All dialogue between group members also creates notifications on the site as well. In the beginning of subject instruction, basic grammatical assignments can be facilitated through online flashcards and apps, and assessed through a variety of quiz formats. Beyond the basics, when the group is knowledgeable enough to engage in higher order thinking tasks; discussions can include more open-ended questions and responses. Small groups can collaborate on projects both in and outside the physical classroom and prepare for in class teams to debate and dialogue points of view constructing new ideas from them. Teachers integrating these tools for outside classroom work can then capitalize on increased instruction time for modeling examples and facilitating more vigorous discussion that has been prepared for in advance.

Edmodo Media Project 6 References Clark, R., Mayer, R. (2011) E-Learning and the Science of Instruction: Proven Guidelines for Consumers and Designers of Multimedia Learning. New York: Pfeiffer Meyer, L. (2013, July 27). Interview by D.L. White []. Meyer-white interview. White, D. (2013, July 24).

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