Class Dojo Messaging

Discussion in 'General Education' started by otterpop, Jul 5, 2016.

  1. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Class Dojo has an option to send a message to all parents. I usually send emails, but this looks nice because it tells you how many people viewed your message. I'm wondering what it looks like when it sends though. Will it send to their email inbox like a normal message, or would they have to log on to the Class Dojo website?
     
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  3. Luv2TeachInTX

    Luv2TeachInTX Comrade

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    The message gets sent to the parents within the app. Depending on their notification preferences, they may know they have a message right away or will get the message the next time they open Dojo.
     
  4. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Hmm. Maybe not what I want then. Every parent probably would not have the app.
     
  5. Luv2TeachInTX

    Luv2TeachInTX Comrade

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    Have you tried Remind? It will send a text directly to parents while keeping your number confidential.
     
  6. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    I've played around with it, but I am trying to use as few platforms as possible to keep it simple for myself and parents. We also have various other logins and websites that our school uses. I don't really use ClassDojo, but I could (I have in the past), and parents are familiar with it.

    I wish there was one master product that could do it all!
     
  7. phillyteacher

    phillyteacher Comrade

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    I used ClassDojo last year. Not all of my parents signed up but those who did were fairly engaged. If they don't view a message within some time frame, like an hour or two, they get an email letting them know they have a message. But they do need to view it in the app or on the website.
     
  8. shoreline02

    shoreline02 Cohort

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    The problem I ran into using Dojo was that I work in a lower income area where many of my parents do not have a computer or internet at home. They also don't have internet on their phones unless using wifi so they would be unable to access Dojo most of the time.

    This year I am planning on using remind since it uses text messages for FREE and all my parents with phones can receive text messages. Seems to be a better fit for my school.
     
  9. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    I send out a classroom newsletter via email each week. So, I don't know that I could condense that all down to a text message. But I do agree that text messaging is probably the most convenient way to get out information, because texts are harder to ignore.

    I had a parent admit they deleted my emails without reading them, which annoyed me, because I try to be very intentional with my emails (they can be skimmed quickly). This parent was saying they had no idea that a big project was due because their student hadn't told them, even though I required a parent signature on the assignment sheet, reminded students regularly, and reminded parents via email. :eek: Luckily, the parent totally owned up to their part in the assignment being late and also the student was grounded until it was completed (no blame was placed on me), but that's one of the reasons I was thinking that having a way to see whether emails were being read would be useful.
     
  10. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    ,
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2019
  11. phillyteacher

    phillyteacher Comrade

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    I am not sure if I'll use the Class Dojo management features this coming year, but I will likely still use it for messaging and for the "Story" features, especially now that students can create their own individual story/ portfolio. Not 100% on that - I have also thought about going to Bloomz for messaging (or Remind, although I don't love Remind) and then using a separate digital portfolio.
     
  12. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    I'll look into this. Thank you. :)
     
  13. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    ,
     
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  14. MacGuffin

    MacGuffin Companion

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    It seems to me that email is becoming passé as a method of communication outside work. I had maybe two parents who liked to communicate that way last year. But seemed like a bunch suggested texting last year and that was becoming the new way to go. So I was thinking of using Dojo this year for that and it's other features, since it enables you to send the whole group messages as well, and not use your personal phone number.

    So I welcome all advice on how to best kick it off and implement it for anybody who has been successful with it. It seems these days in even the poorer communities smartphones have become a great technology equalizer and nearly everybody has them. Of course you're never going to find any one system that works perfectly for 100% of the parents.
     
  15. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Hmm. I think you may be right, but I don't really know a better option! I like to send home a weekly newsletter, which is too long to send by text. My school sends home information via email too, and sometimes parents complain that they didn't know about special activities or events when they obviously got an email in their inbox from the school. I do know several people who only use email at work though. :confused:

    I guess, like you said, there's never going to be an option that works for 100% of people. The best I can do is really encourage parents to check their emails regularly.
     
  16. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    I used Remind101 for those who cared to sign up. Mostly I had to rely on word of mouth. I sent home messages on weekly homework and even mass emails and letters... but I have many parents that can't read English, or can't even read Spanish if I were to translate. So I just trusted the kiddos to be the ultimate source.
     
  17. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    I LITERALLY just recommended this to some teachers yesterday. I visited my friend's classroom and met her colleagues where they told me that they text using their personal # with their parents. I was like WHAT?! :warning::!!: And then told them there's a way to do it anonymously, but couldn't remember what it was called. So I found it and sent off the link.
    They said it wasn't an issue, but there's NO WAY IN HELL I would I give out my personal info. Sorry.
    :confused: So maybe if they use it and spread the app around, that'll give me bonus points in their book for recommending it. I'm trying to sub in the district and network this year.
    :)
     
  18. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    I don't think there's a way for parents to text you back in this app (or website), but maybe I'm wrong? Can anyone who uses Remind 101 provide insight? I thought it was just a one way thing.
     
  19. MacGuffin

    MacGuffin Companion

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    Does dojo have the ability to send newsletters? Or just short messages? I havent really checked out the features yet. Does it have a place in there where you can check off homework every day so parents have an easy way to check if their kids are doing their work?
     
  20. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    Parents can initiate texts with you on Remind, but it hasn't always been that way.

    I'm switching over to Bloomz as it's a little closer set up to Facebook, but secure. You can even have parents sign up for conferences and volunteering with it, and that's what sold me.
     
  21. phillyteacher

    phillyteacher Comrade

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    Remind allows two-way messaging, I have used it as a parent. As a teacher, you can turn that off for your account but it's all or nothing - you can't do it class by class. You can also set up "office hours" and if a parent messages you outside of your hours it will tell them that you may not see it or respond until you're back and give them the option to send anyway or wait.

    Remind also allows parents to message other parents independent of the teacher, I just recently noticed. I do not see any settings for that in the teacher view nor in the profile section.

    I am interested in Bloomz as well, waffling on which I'll use. I used Class Dojo last year and really liked it but I don't really think I'll use the points system at all this year and I like that these other options can do text and email notifications without requiring the app so much.

    On ClassDojo (all three actually), you can send photographs. I sometimes sent longer messages in ClassDojo OR I'd send a photo of a newsletter or announcement or something. It wouldn't work well for really detailed newsletters because they would be annoying to read in a photo, though.
     
  22. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    I just can't get the app on my iphone 4 because it's "out of date" and I can't update beyond IOS 7.
    :mad: THIS is not the first time this has happened. I guess I will have to get a new phone (sigh).
     
  23. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    I believe you don't need the app, and you can use the website on a pc?
     
  24. phillyteacher

    phillyteacher Comrade

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    Yep, you can do it via the website without the app!
     
  25. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    True. But I'm not always near a computer, but I always have my phone within reach. And like everything else, apps are just easier and more convenient especially if you want to send a quick message to all parents. It's like Classroom Dojo, walking around with it and adding or deducting points and sending messages. And then if you want to take pics of the kids, you can easily post them to the Dojo wall. And really I can't download - or upgrade- a lot of apps anymore because it's so old.
     
  26. MacGuffin

    MacGuffin Companion

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    Shame you can't do larger newsletters in Dojo, but personally at the middle school level I don't see much interest from parents in those anyway, but I do often have shorter announcements I would like to send to parents that would give them a notification on their phone, rather than putting things on a classroom website which virtually nobody ever checks. But I also want to try out the management tools in Dojo which Bloomz and Remind don't have. I have a sort of iPad Mini holster (actually a small waiter apron) on my belt so it's always just an arm's reach away.
     
  27. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    When I student taught they used the Dojo -- you would constantly hear the dinging and beeping -- or whatever stupid noises it made for giving/taking points. The kids were 6th graders and about 50% cared and 50% didn't. They had "Dojo stars," those were the kids who had 100+ points. Of course that's just who they were and responded well. The others, had -1000 points, and it wasn't a motivator for them. "Go ahead take another point."
    If you use it to manage the kids, there should be some sort of accountability and reward/consequence system involved. There has to be some buy in, right? Otherwise, you're just wasting your own time. When they handed me the Ipad during my lessons to track behavior and I saw the disparity, I was like WOAH! Though I suppose I say this skeptically because some teachers have a difference tolerance level. Some kids would look at them the wrong way and they'd be hitting the button. It's quite sad, really.
    "Yep keep pressing, it's obviously working!" Is what I thought.
    :eek:o_O
    I just realized that the 6th graders were like my --then-- 2nd graders. They were just in bigger bodies but they were still goofy and silly, rolling around on the floor, etc. They just had a more developed sense of humor, which while inappropriate, I appreciated. I handed out math compasses to draw circles and one kid said, noticing the sharp edge, "Woah, we can totally be emo with this thing!" I was "NO! That's NOT why I gave them to you."
    And then he kept singing, "Do you want to build a snow man?"
    I had never seen the movie Frozen at that point so didn't get the reference, but responded, "No, but I want you to get to work."
    We all shared some laughs during that placement. The 6th graders were cool, but I don't know if I'd want to teach it FT.
     
  28. MacGuffin

    MacGuffin Companion

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    Yes. I do plan to tie in rewards with it. I was thinking if I really pushed for the parents to put it on their phone and if a high percentage of them are checking it and getting alerts, preferably mostly positive, that would get the most buy-in of all. I also thought it could be a good spot for parents to easily check if homework was getting done. So no, I don't think I would use it just as an internal point system. Were you able to get a lot of parents to use it?
     
  29. phillyteacher

    phillyteacher Comrade

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    I would just be careful to explain to parents what negative points mean. I had a couple parents who overreacted to occasional negative points. I had to explain to them that everybody makes mistakes, and negative points are not a huge deal when they happen every so often, and that students get at least one verbal warning before the negative point. These were parents of students who "never" had these issues before (hah, right - also, things change as your student gets older).
     
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  30. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    OMG YES! :toofunny::rofl:I deducted points from one student and LITERALLY as soon as I did, I got a message from her mom asking, "Why did L lose points? She NEVER has had issues before."
    Yes your child is good, but sometimes she can be a little chatty depending on who she was sitting with.
     
  31. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    I think I ended up getting most of my parents, maybe a few who didn't, but they never really were invested in it and to be honest, nor was I. I experimented with it, but ended up letting it go toward the end of the 1st quarter. I had maybe a few hard core followers who actually checked in and sent me messages but the rest just went along because I kept pestering them about it. I would constantly print & send out those parent invite letters, but yeah I didn't like having to remember to walk around with Dojo loaded to give or take points. And then I feel a management system for the little guys is more effective if they can SEE it all the time so I opted for a pocket chart where they could see whether they were on green, yellow or red. Dojo was OK for the communication system, but beyond that I just wasn't that into it.
     
  32. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    I think this immediate feedback is good and bad. Everyone makes mistakes and isn't on their "A" game all the time. Imagine if a boss at a place of employment gave points in that way to an adult... talking at the copy machine too long, -1, working hard, +1, late assignment, -1... I think it could get very stressful. And, kids have been misbehaving for centuries; parents don't need play by play reports of how they're doing each minute. That said, I do really appreciate the parents who deal with their kids when there are ongoing problems.
     
  33. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    Exactly! And I didn't want to keep track of it either. I liked to look holistically how the kid did each day, not minute by minute.
    :)
     
  34. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

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    At my school we all use dojo to tie in with our school wide PBIS rewards. We actually don't use the negative points. Only positive.
     
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  35. MacGuffin

    MacGuffin Companion

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    Yes, thanks for the tips. Funny that parents would get all bent out of shape over an occasional negative comment. I thought it also might serve as a decent record when it comes to conferences. Will just try to keep it on the positive points side as much as possible.
     
  36. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    When I used Class Dojo, I mainly used it with the random button. Throughout the day, I would press the "random student" button on my computer (kids couldn't see it). I would look at whoever it chose, and if they were on task, they got a positive point, and if they were off task, they got a negative point. For me, this worked better than awarding or taking away points on a whim. Students heard the positive or negative point sounds on the classroom speakers, and this alone was enough to check their behavior, since they didn't know who was getting the points.

    I explained this to parents at conferences or when they wanted to know how their student was doing. I'd say, I randomly select students, and look at their behavior at that time. As you can see, Billy is on task 70% of the time. That's great. However, it looks like during the other 30% of the time, he's talking to a neighbor. That's one thing I'd like him to work on.

    The concrete data was nice to have, as I felt it provided a more objective point of view.
     
  37. phillyteacher

    phillyteacher Comrade

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    I agree, otterpop, I did think that it helped me be more objective when looking at behavior and I also used the random feature quite a bit.
     

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