Edmodo: some of the features well worth exploring

Despite the fact that there have been a few grumbles about the latest updates to it, Edmodo remains my favourite Web 2.0 tool for use with language learners of all ages.

Besides its privacy, the fact that it's super easy to set up and use (especially to anyone familiar with Facebook) is one reason why it's so successful (and passed 15 million users a while back), but if you delve into it below the bonnet it also comes with some amazingly powerful tools.

The following are well worth exploring…

  • Assignments, which allow your learners to (digitally) "hand in" work before your chosen deadline
  • Badges, which you can create and award, and are especially popular with young learners
  • Communities, eg. Computer technology, which are big (some huge!) macro groups for teachers
  • Co-teachers i.e. having two teachers, and their students, in the same group (it's fabulous to share with another teacher and their group in another country!)
  • Your library, which lets you share documents, links etc with the whole group (and with different groups)
  • Moderation of posts and replies (i.e. you approve them before they appear, in fact a feature I prefer not to use, unless a discussion ever gets too heated!)
  • Mobile, with both an app and a version for iPads and other tablets being available
  • Your Planner/Calendar, which is designed to keep both you and your learners organised!
  • Polls [see video], one of my favourites, though I think they work best if you say "Answer the poll and then explain your answer in the comments"
  • The Progress/Gradebook, which automatically adds the scores for Assignments and Quizzes
  • Quizzes, which are much more complete than polls, and would allow you to create tests and exams (but that's not the most powerful, most interesting feature of Edmodo!)
  • RSS feeds, which enable you to bring in content from a blog or news site such as the BBC
  • Small groups, which allow you to create (private) groups-within-a-group so that in a class of, say 25, you can have 5 small groups of 5 working together
  • Tagging posts, which makes them easier to find afterwards Now missing in the latest update

Most of the links above are to the excellent Edmodo Help Centre, which in fact will solve virtually all the possible questions about Edmodo that you might have.

The Edmodo Support Community is also excellent and the Edmodo Blog (and/or Twitter feed) well worth following.

See also | Top 10 tips for starting with Edmodo

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