Classroom messaging services aim to connect teachers, students, and parents
If your kids have a mobile phone, chances are they’re already prolific texters. On the computer they’re also quick to chat, reddit, tweet, tumbl, and all the rest. The way kids communicate today isn’t lost on parents or educators. It’s also not lost on the mobile app entrepreneurs who have set out to leverage the behavior to better connect teachers, students, and parents.
Enter classroom messaging services. Designed to keep parents informed about what’s going on in the classroom, from homework assignments and reminders to photos of student projects, these tech-enabled notifications are making their way into schools through established online education platforms like Blackboard and Edmodo and standalone apps like Remind101 and WDWDT?.
WDWDT?, short for “What Did We Do Today?,” received a market boost when Edudemic highlighted it in April. For teachers using the app, WDWDT? offers customized actions and alerts to keep students and parents in the loop. It also gives teachers survey tools and supports their volunteer recruitment efforts.
A similar app for teachers, Remind101 is being used in all sorts of simple and unique ways, while emphasizing privacy controls among its set of features. Josh Stumpenhorst, a 2012 Illinois Teacher of the Year and Athletic Director at Lincoln Junior High School in Naperville Community Unit School District, uses Remind 101 for the school track team.