This app is really fun! It lets you monitor attendance and classroom behavior. It also has a feature that lets you connect to parents--either via email or by printing off report pages to send home. I have only been using it for a few days, but so far my class and I are really enjoying it!
And it is easy to use: I created a free Teacher account and can log in from any computer. Then I designated a monster icon to represent each student in my class. In the mornings, I open up the account on a student computer and, as students do the classroom routine, they click on their monster changing it from absent to here (which is just a fun way to do attendance). During the day I can give kids positive and/or negative points based on their behavior simply by clicking on their name and choosing from the predetermined choices. At the end of the day, I can show the class how they did individually or as a group when it comes to behavior. We are setting a goal to get to 100% green!
At first it was a challenge to remember to give points out--sometimes I get so involved in teaching that I forget! To help me remember, I decided to reward the class at the end of each class period. When we finished with writing, I gave them a score based on their behavior. I did the same after math, walking in the hallways, after reading, etc. I also reward points when something great happens. For example yesterday I asked students to clear their desks and they did it immediately and quietly! I made a big deal about how great it is when the class listens and I elaborately gave points to everyone!
Another way to make it easier to give points is to reward the whole class at once (there is an option to do that!). Just click on the All Students button and give a reward (or a negative if things are out of control!) to everyone. This option makes it really easy to get points out to kids! I could even have a teacher's helper do that task.
At the end of the day, my class likes to see how they did. It is a great closing activity--I log in from my computer so it can be displayed on the document camera. Then we review our behavior as a class to see if we met our goal. For example, we decided that 80% positive behavior would be a good goal but when we pulled up the class score, we only had 77%. There is a diagram to show what the breakdown was so I praised them on their team work and participation, but we need to improve with the off task and distracting behavior. For particular students, I was able to print off their specific behavior chart so they could take it home as a report for parents.
The thing I am enjoying most about this computer app is the total buy-in of my students. They like the technology and the instant feedback they get about their behavior. They motivate each other to sit/be quiet/get to work hoping that I will notice and give them points. The classroom environment is full of teamwork and participation since they all know they each have a stake in the game.
I am enjoying the fun atmosphere that this simple app has brought to the classroom. It is an easy way to reinforce the positive behaviors that I already expect from them. It creates competition, which is motivating, and the rewards are specific and free!
Thanks for reading my blog...now I have to get ready to teach all my "little monsters!"
If anyone else is using ClassDojo or decides to try it out, post your comments here and let me know how it works for you!!