Class Dojo?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by CDOR79, Sep 2, 2018.

  1. CDOR79

    CDOR79 Comrade

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    Sep 2, 2018

    I’m thinking of giving this system a try with my 5th graders. I was wondering what your thoughts are on it, for those that use it.
     
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  3. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    If that’s your preferred system of behavior management (points awarded or deducted for behavior), then it works just fine. It’s easy to use from just about any device, and it offers many other capabilities.

    If, however, you prefer a behavior management system built on strong relationships with students, it’s best to avoid Class Dojo. The involvement of points can hinder relationships with students.
     
  4. Teacher234

    Teacher234 Comrade

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    I have looked into class dojo, but it is basically a digital points card. I would suggest that you consider a monthly reward day. A checkmark system, but is appropriate for upper elementary. Students who did not complete homework, choose to misbehave, or is unprepared will get a checkmark. Maybe ten checkmarks=no participation in the reward day (instead, the student gets a super duper fun busywork packet in ISS)

    The reward day does not always have to be a pizza party and movie. It can also be a holiday party (such as Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Spring). In June, maybe a water day. In January, maybe an hour or two out in the snow. Have a breakfast buffet for one of the days and play board games. If you did not figure it out yet, I love planning special days for my class!
     
  5. shoreline02

    shoreline02 Cohort

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    Sep 6, 2018

    We use Class Dojo school-wide. I LOVE it, especially for parent communication.
     
  6. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    To each their own, certainly.

    Our school does not allow it, as they prefer (as do I) a more nuanced (for lack of a better way of putting it) approach to student behaviors.

    Though some of the features included that I've heard about (portfolio, communication - though e-mail works perfectly fine for me...) sound at least somewhat interesting.

    I cut out most of everything that's "extraneous" though to my teaching and total immersion into interacting with the students, so I don't think I'd ever use it.
     
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  7. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Sep 7, 2018

    I use Dojo only to communicate with parents and it works well for that.
     
  8. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    Totally just out of curiosity, but what's motivating for using Dojo instead of e-mail for that communication?
     
  9. CDOR79

    CDOR79 Comrade

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    Sep 8, 2018

    Good question, Magic. Is there a benefit to it in regards to communication?
     
  10. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Sep 8, 2018

    I use Bloomz for communication with parents. I prefer it over email (and Dojo) because it functions like a private social media page for my class. I get more parent involvement because they get phone alerts whenever I post anything, and they can use it just like Facebook or Instagram. I post photos and resources frequently, as well as calendar updates, and parents always know where to go to find them. I could share that stuff over email, too, but parents would be more likely to "lose" the email (delete it or file it away and be unable to find it when needed). When I want to contact an individual parent, I do still use email, but I find the Bloomz works better for communicating with my whole class. Bloomz does offer private in-app messaging, though, and I have many parents who prefer to contact me that way rather than using email. I think it's mostly because they don't have to go find my email address and can, instead, just open up the app and send me a quick text message. Also, we are departmentalized at my school, so Bloomz allows my teaching partner and I to share our classes with each other. We can both post the other's homeroom, which is especially nice for knowing what it going on. Bloomz has student portfolios, too, but I have yet to delve deep into that feature.

    Anyway, I know this post was about Dojo, not Bloomz, but since the question of what made it better than email came up, I figured I'd share about Bloomz. Bloomz does also offer behavior tracking (like Dojo), but I don't use that feature. I used Dojo many years ago but left it behind when I switched to a system of behavior management that was built on relationships. At the time, Dojo didn't offer any other features. If they had, I might still use it for those purposes, but, to be honest, I now have a hard time disassociating Dojo with behavior management and points. Bloomz does everything I could ask for and doesn't have a hyper focus on behavior management.
     
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  11. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    Sep 8, 2018

    I have used it and honestly I just was over trying to keep up with it. You have to remember to use it consistently (give / take points, rewards, communication, etc.) I just didn't have time for it. Even if I had it up as a tab on my browser, I just never remembered which made it kind of pointless. And honestly the more I think about it, it is very carrot /stick (taking the behaviorist approach) to management. I would definitely much rather just give out some token (tickets for example) for example, but even using it sparingly. It is very cliche but I do believe students will do best in an engaging environment, completing meaningful work and having a relationship with both teachers and their classmates. That's where the work needs to go!
    :)

    *Also with some parents the LITERAL MINUTE you take away points you may have parents messaging you asking you why. It happened to me and I was like ugh.

    https://www.amazon.com/Managing-21st-Century-Classrooms-ineffective/dp/1416618856
     
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  12. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Sep 16, 2018

    I do not use Class Dojo, but know some teachers who do. My focus is building relationships, but having said that, I also give group table points (and take them away, if needed) and use a class economy system (in which students may spend bucks to go to the bathroom, and use it to participate in some free time on Friday). I get the argument that students should be following the rules and expectations just because, but after 10 years of teaching, I can confirm that some of those external factors work and are sometimes needed. I would also argue it's OKAY to do. I'm a little tired of the "gurus" arguing that we should NOT use any external motivating factors. We are juggling teaching, behavior, human emotions, etc. We need to do what we can to make it all work. Therefore, if you want to experiment with Class Dojo, go for it! Don't let anyone talk you out of it or make you feel bad for it. If you don't like it, then you can stop using it. Nothing lost there. I will also add that I just found out they have a new digital portfolio that I bet you, the students, and parents will like!
     
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  13. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Sep 16, 2018

    Do parents have to download an app for Bloomz?
     
  14. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Sep 16, 2018

    If they want to use it to it’s full capability on their phone, then yes, they do. If I invite them to join, they will continue to get emails when I post to our class page regardless of whether or not they download the app - unless they unsubscribe from those emails. Bloomz has a website too, though. So they don’t have to have a phone app.
     

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