Teachers searching for ways to create community and a positive classroom culture are excited to find ClassDojo which promises to deliver strategies to accomplish that goal. ClassDojo features a strong communication platform which connects teachers, students, parents, and even the whole school. Students are empowered to showcase their own learning and accomplishments by being able to add pictures and videos to a personal portfolio, which can then proudly be shown to their parents. Teachers can easily share news and information with parents by sending whole group messages, or individual messages as needed.
The easy to use app was released in 2011, and in the first year, was used by three and a half million teachers and students. Since the release, ClassDojo has become available in several languages, and has been used by 90% of school districts in the United States as well as by 180 other countries. Some predictions suggest that effective real time communication like the type provided by ClassDojo will make parent teacher conferences a thing of the past.
ClassDojo continues to add features to enhance student engagement and strengthen connection within the classroom, and has recently partnered with Elon Musk and his private school, Ad Astra, to develop the newest addition. It is called conundrums, and just like the name implies, elementary and middle school students will be presented with open-ended questions or ethical situations requiring critical thinking. Students are then given the opportunity to discuss and reason through the issue before arriving at a solution. As always with ClassDojo, the goal is to create a positive culture, so students are given reminders of how to be respectful and open-minded as they interact with classmates.
The teacher has access to further tips and advice to facilitate effective communication, such as making sure to give students time to fully discuss ideas, and ways to work in movement to enhance engagement. Teachers can also add twists to the conundrum if desired. Students are given a chance to reflect at the end, and results are able to be shared with parents who are connected through the app. ClassDojo continues to bring innovative ways to enhance communication.