sábado, 25 de febrero de 2017

Can Edmodo Turn Virality into Profitability?

Can Edmodo turn Virality into Profitability?

With more than 65 million users in 370,000 schools around the world, Edmodo boasts the sort of “viral” adoption that makes entrepreneurs and investors salivate. Yet finding a stable revenue source has proven elusive. “If I can only [make] 30 cents or 40 cents per user per year, [we] would be profitable,” Vibhu Mittal, the company’s CEO, mused on a panel at the ASU+GSV Summit conference earlier this year. He acknowledged that “we haven’t quite solved it yet.”
Virality pays off when businesses can advertise to or sell data about their users. But that doesn’t work in education. Mittal’s candid remark raises an important question facing Edmodo and the “freemium” strategy: How can an edtech company convert virality into financial sustainability when neither its direct users (teachers and students) nor the organization (schools and districts) are willing to pay?
That’s the $87.5 million puzzle for roughly 80 employees at Edmodo and the 11 venture firms that have backed the San Mateo, CA-based startup, which last raised $30 million in Aug. 2014. Making the question more urgent is the fact that its user growth in the U.S. has “flattened” due to market saturation, Mittal told EdSurge in a follow-up interview.

The App Store Experiment

Founded in 2008 as a school-safe social learning network for K-12 teachers and students, Edmodo enjoyed the early “hockey stick growth” that illustrates viral adoption. The platform is often described as “Facebook for schools,” and that familiar feel and design attracted many teachers to Edmodo’s offerings. By 2012, the company claimed 10 million users.
But unlike Facebook, which can generate billions in revenue through ads, the vast majority of Edmodo’s users—roughly 90 percent—are students. And kids don’t pay. Many freemium edtech companies offer a basic version of their offerings for free, and try to upsell “premium” services such as data analytics and additional features to school administrators. Some companies opt to monetize from parents.
Edmodo has long tried to figure out how to deliver value that teachers or schools would pay for. In 2012, the company built an app store where teachers could buy tools directly from entrepreneurs and companies; Edmodo would take a cut of sales. “Our thesis was that teachers would have money that they could use to purchase apps,” Manish Kothari, the company’s General Manager of Platform, tells EdSurge. “We thought districts would disburse money and give [teachers] the freedom to choose and buy what they want.”
This hypothesis—that teachers would have the budget or authority to purchase apps—“was a pipe dream,” Kothari now believes. Only 10 percent of Edmodo’s teachers visited the app store, which at its peak offered 700 apps from 100 developers. At one point, the company even offered teachers app store credit, but that failed to build sustainable momentum.

Going Upstream

Edmodo also offers data management services that allow schools to create a private subdomain, sync user accounts with student information systems and monitor usage data. In addition, company offers professional development in the form of in-person trainings on how to use Edmodo, and helping set up professional learning communities using its platform.
In 2014, the company launched Snapshot, a free tool that allows teachers to generate standards-aligned quizzes. The product was paired with a premium “Snapshot for Schools” version, which offered more robust data analytics to schools and districts. But demand was lukewarm in the U.S. and the business struggled, according to Kothari.
These services are still available, despite lower than expected traction. Just a couple hundred of U.S. schools and districts pay for these services, each of which the company charges $500 to $2,500 per year.

International Expansion

Now the focus for Edmodo is on international expansion, where the company sees fewer competitors. “Outside the U.S., the market is very different as there are entire countries that suddenly decide to bring all schools online at once and need tools,” Mittal observes. “When this happens, we’ll try to be one of the first products they consider.”
It’s a strategy that a similar company, Schoology, followed in 2014, when it won a contract from the Uruguayan government to deploy its learning management system (LMS) in all of that country’s schools. Schoology now claims users in more than 130 countries, with a major presence in Malaysia, Singapore and Korea.
Roughly half of Edmodo’s overall revenues come from international partnerships secured over the past two years. In Mexico, the company notched a deal to provide its platform to the country’s biggest teacher’s union, with more than 1.4 million members. Across the Atlantic, the company is working with Cambridge University Press to pilot its Snapshot assessment tool, in 30 U.K. primary schools. And in Japan, Edmodo has also partnered with educational publisher and “cram school” operator, Zoshinkai, to pair its platform with Japanese content to deploy to schools.

Next Experiments

The company has hardly given up on the U.S. market, even though Mittal acknowledges that “there are now many competing products in the marketplace, the biggest of whom is now Google Classroom.” The internet search giant’s free LMS, which claims more than 10 million users, has captured some of Edmodo’s user base.
At the national ISTE conference later this June, Edmodo plans to share several new features that it hopes will revive its traction. Among them is Edmodo Play, a feature that allows students to take multiple-choice quizzes in their Edmodo class stream. Students can earn badges and chat with others from around the world on a discussion board. (All comments are moderated.) Within four weeks after its soft launch in Nov. 2015, Kothari claims, almost half a million students answered questions.
Another update will allow teachers to make discussion threads in private groups and classrooms publicly accessible to the broader Edmodo community. “Great conversations were happening, but they were not discoverable,” says Kothari, who describes these interactions as “richer Twitter chats.”
June will also mark the last month for the Edmodo app store. Earlier this year, developers were notified that the store will be sunsetted on June 30. The company is not abandoning the idea entirely, however; in its place is Spotlight, a marketplace similar to Teachers Pay Teachers where anyone can upload, share and sell materials. The majority of the 100,000 resources available are free and created by teachers; of the paid offerings, most cost under $5. These materials can also be displayed directly into a student’s class stream.
Kothari says that wooing developers to Spotlight is not a major focus for now; there are fewer than 50 of them selling on the platform. Edmodo takes a 40 percent cut of all sales, but so far this makes up only “a tiny fraction” of the company’s revenue.
There is a possibility that data from the Play quizzes and discussion topics can surface content recommendations from the Spotlight marketplace. “It’s definitely something we will look at,” Mittal hints, “but we are not doing it right now.” He adds: “Whenever we make a recommendation, we want to offer content that might be most effective for specific users.”
For Edmodo, leveraging student data to make content recommendations is a risky prospect. It is a signatory to the Student Privacy Pledge, a legally binding commitment stipulating that companies cannot use student data for commercial purposes.
Steve Blank, a revered entrepreneur, investor and advisor in startup circles, has said that a startup is “an organization built to search for a repeatable and scalable business model.” In that sense, Edmodo is very much a startup—even though it may be old by Silicon Valley’s standards. “We can only charge for our business if we can provide real value to our users,” Mittal says. In the U.S. and abroad, the company has managed to get people on its free platform. Keeping them—and finding revenue—however, remains a challenge.

martes, 14 de febrero de 2017


5 consejos para enseñar la tolerancia en el aula

La enseñanza de la tolerancia no es solo un gran hábito para tu aula, pero también es uno de nuestros blogs de enseñanza favoritos. Como un proyecto creado por el “Southern Poverty Law Center”, es una gran manera de aprender como se puede incorporar más empatía y diversidad en el aula. Inspirados por su trabajo, nos gustaría compartir estos cinco consejos para enseñar tolerancia en tu salón de clases.

Considera las paredes de tu aula

Un montón de maestros se quejan cuando llega el momento de decorar el salon de clases porque sienten que el esfuerzo y tiempo invertido no es recompensado. Pero poner mensajes positivos en tu aula puede hacer mucho más que mejorar el esquema de color en las paredes. Puede incluir mensajes que fomenten la diversidad, tolerancia, aceptación y que hagan de tu aula un espacio seguro. Hacer que tu aula sea cómoda y un lugar físicamente aceptable puede ayudar a los estudiantes que están teniendo problemas personales, especialmente a esos que se han convertido en víctimas de la intimidación.

Reconoce los sentimientos del estudiante y maestro

Cuando los momentos importantes llenan a la gente de diversas emociones, como la forma en que el resultado de la elección presidencial ha dividido a los ciudadanos anglo-americanos, puede hacer que el aula sea un lugar muy cargado de diferentes sentimientos. Una de las mejores cosas que puedes hacer después de un evento importante es crear un espacio donde todos puedan reconocer estas emociones y hacer preguntas libremente mientras supervisas la discusión. También puedes conectar dichos eventos con la literatura y otros textos para ayudar a tus estudiantes a construir su inteligencia emocional.

Explica términos y conceptos relacionados con eventos actuales

Es fácil para los padres y estudiantes levantarse fastidiados sobre los eventos y debates políticamente cargados, y aunque no puedas hablar francamente de tus propias tendencias políticas, puedes aclarar los significados de ciertas palabras o conceptos que son frecuentes en el debate nacional. Por ejemplo, algunos estudiantes pueden tener problemas para entender lo que significa cuando un lugar es denominado una “Ciudad Santuario” y ayudar a explicar lo que son puede apoyar al estudiante a tomar una decisión independiente y mantener sus discusiones civiles.

Fomenta un sentido de empatía en tu salón de clases

Algunos estudiantes probablemente hablarán cuando no es su turno o actuarán de una manera grosera cuando estés tratando de crear un espacio seguro en tu clase, pero al involucrarte con el estudiante directamente de una manera consciente y sin prejuicios, puedes traer más empatía a tu salón de clases. Muchos maestros consideran la empatia como el antídoto contra el acoso y hay datos para respaldarlo. Tu puedes traer más empatía en tus enseñanzas cuando promueves el pensamiento crítico y la autorreflexión. La mayoría de los estudiantes, y de hecho la mayoría de gente, se ven a sí mismos como un perdedor en sus vidas y ayudar a tu clase a entender la naturaleza de esta vulnerabilidad puede crear un espacio más seguro para ellos.

Dirige con tu ejemplo

Esto es mucho más fácil decirlo que hacerlo, y es más un recordatorio que consejo. Pero los estudiantes siempre están observando lo que haces y por cada estudiante que haga una pregunta que podría frustrarte, hay cuatro que deseaban haber hablado para hacer esa misma pregunta. Recordar la práctica de la empatía y paciencia no es nada fácil, pero este esfuerzo es recompensado cuando ayudas a tus estudiantes a entender la tolerancia y a convertir tu aula en un espacio seguro. Es posible que no te guste, pero los maestros son líderes de millones de estudiantes todos los días y pueden crear un nivel de conducta superior mostrando a los estudiantes como tratar a los demás con respeto y simpatía.

¿Tienes alguna historia favorita sobre la enseñanza de la tolerancia en el aula? ¿Cualquier artículo o publicación que quieras compartir sobre el tema? ¡Sientente libre de compartirlos en la sección de comentarios!


viernes, 10 de febrero de 2017

Edmodo: Bienvenido a la "nueva versión" de las RR.SS.

Hola a todos:

Ultimamente he redactado posts sobre las RR.SS. y su aplicación  a los más distintos niveles, pero no quería dejar de comentar la que hoy por hoy considero la mejor y más útil Red Social a nivel educativo, y que no es otra que EDMODO.

Por supuesto, esto no pretende ser la "explicación definitiva" sino una mera introducción que despierte en algunos el interés para descubrir más de esta red social / docente. 

Edmodo es una red social de aprendizaje, de uso educativo y gratuita. Se presenta a través una plataforma educativa con el fin de facilitar la comunicación entre docentes, alumnos y familias y se caracteriza por brindar privacidad y seguridad a los usuarios.

Surgió en 2008, y fue creada por Jeff O'Hara y Nic Borg, empleados del distrito escolar de Illinois, USA en febrero del 2010 se fusiona con Fusion Project, empresa subsidiaria de Revolution Learning. Actualmente tiene MÁS DE 15.000.000 de usuarios y sigue creciendo día a día.

¿Cuáles son sus aplicaciones y funcionalidades?

  • Mantener contacto fluído y virtual con alumnos, colegas docentes y familias.
  • Compartir información relevante entre docentes colegas, alumnos y familias.
  • Fomentar el trabajo colaborativo dentro de la institución o entre diferentes instituciones
  • Apoyar clases presenciales
  • Sumar actividades domiciliarias
  • Brindar de forma organizada un espacio personal de almacenamiento de información multimedial (links, videos, imágenes, documentos), denominado Biblioteca.


  • Es gratuita.
  • Tiene una amplia variedad de idiomas
  • No requiere obligatoriamente el mail de los alumnos, lo cual permite que se registren menores de 13 años.
  • No es abierta al público ya que no permite el ingreso a invitados sin registro.
  • Brinda un entorno intuitivo y amigable.
  • Permite invitar a los familiares de los alumnos a acompañar el proceso de aprendizaje.
  • Emula una clase a distancia para alumnos que no pueden asistir presencialmente a clase por un lapso determinado.
  • No presenta opciones pagas mejoradas (cuenta Premium)
  • Está en constante mejora.
  • Los docentes administradores pueden blanquear la clave de los alumnos de su grupo, en caso de olvido.



Tipos de usuarios

Al crear una cuenta nueva permite dos tipos de usuarios, profesor estudiante.
El profesor puede crear grupos, lo cual lo califica como profesor administrador de su grupo.
Si otros profesores se unen a su grupo, son miembros que no tienen los mismos permisos que el profesor administrador, pero éste puede cambiar la propiedad de los invitados a co-profesor, y de esta forma pueden realizar casi las mismas acciones que el profesor administrador.

Para esto, primero clic en el nombre del grupo y debe ir a la solapa Miembros
Al seleccionar un miembro, se despliegan ciertas opciones. Para cambiar su situación dentro del grupo, se despliega el cuadro de la opción Acceso:

A su vez puede cambiar la propiedad tanto de profesores como de estudiantes a “Sólo lectura”, donde no tienen ningún privilegio más que el de leer lo que sucede en los grupos.El administrador o co-profesor del grupo tienen la opción de eliminar miembros del grupo con “Remover del grupo”

También pueden cambiar la contraseña de los estudiantes, en el caso de olvido, así como también volver a generar el código parental de los alumnos.

Los estudiantes no pueden crearse una cuenta si un profesor no les da un código de grupo.Los PADRES no pueden crearse una cuenta si un alumno no les da un código parental.

Y una muy buena idea para todos los que usan twitter.- el #edmodochat, donde podréis hablar de temas tan atractivos como ....


Keeping Learning Intact over the Holiday Break

Q1: What strategies do you employ to keep students sharp over the break?
Q2: Homework or Projects? Why?
Q3: How do you address Ss who have no computers at home?
Q4: Is it Best Practice to stay active in Edmodo over holidays?
Q5: How do you manage your class time nearing holidays?
Q6: Tech tips and tricks for starting a new semester?  
Evolving Classroom Practices to Make Learning More Active and Engaging?
Q1: How do you define active learning?
Q2: What are you most successful active learning strategies?
Q3: How has technology helped or hindered those strategies?
Q4: Which active learning activities do your students love?
Q5: How have you used collaboration in your classrooms?
Q6: What concerns and major hurdles do your students experience with collaboration?
Q7: How has technology allowed you to focus on improving learning outcomes?
Involving Parents to Improve Student Learning

Q1: How do Parents fit into our current educational model?
Q2: Does this need to change? How would we change this?
Q3: What strategies do you employ to involve your Parents with learning?
Q4: How do we extend learning from the classroom into the homes of students?
Q5: How can Edmodo improve our Parent involvement specifically?
Q6: What concerns and major hurdles do you experience when working with Parents?
Q7: How do we work With our parents instead of against them? (maybe, depending on conversation)
Tips and Tricks for Reaching All Learners in the Classroom

Q1: How are you using Edmodo to communicate with students? (What specific tool, etc?)
Q2: How do your students respond to this extra communication?
Q3: How do you determine the skill level of your students? assessment, survey, etc
Q4: How are you differentiating instruction within Edmodo to reach these learners?
Q5: If you have limited tech access, how are you using devices to reach learners?
Q6: What perspective have you gained about your students that you didn’t have before tech (or Edmodo in general)?
Using Web 2.0 Technology IN Edmodo

Q1: What does Web 2.0 technology mean to you? #edmodochat
Q2: How do these tools add VALUE to your classroom instruction? #edmodochat
Q3: Why use Web 2.0 tools in @Edmodo? #emodochat
Q4: What is your favorite Web 2.0 tool for your content area?
Q5: What is your favorite Web 2.0 tools for content creation?
Q6: What is your favorite Web 2.0 tool in general?
Parent Involvement


Q1: What r specific things that help transform negative/fixed minded parents n2 positive adopters who utilize Edmodo/technology?
Q2: How involved should parents be?  When should students be held accountable for their work vs parents stepping in?
Q3: What are the top tools and applications you are using to encourage parent use of Edmodo?
Internet Safety and Digital Citizenship

(June is internet safety month!)
Q1: How do you teach Internet Safety in  your classrooms?
Q2: What are some best practices you teach your students?
Q3: What tools do you use for teaching internet safety?
Q4: How to use Badges to show them good behavior?
Professional Development over Summer

Q1: What are your plans for personal professional development this summer? Q2: Does your district have professional development scheduled this summer? If so, what kind?
Q3: What are some of the titles on your summer professional development reading list?
Q4: Are you using Edmodo for summer professional development? If so, how?
Q5: Do you have plans to attend any professional conferences this summer?

Describe your ideal summer professional learning experience? #njed
What form does your summer professional learning take? #njed
What drives your summer professional learning? PDP? Personal Interest? District offerings? Other? #njed
How do you capture / share your learning from summer PD with your school community? #njedWhat resources do you rely upon to find learning opportunities? #njed
What resources do you rely upon to find learning opportunities? #njed
Does your professional learning include offering PD as well? #njed
What tools do you use to maintain a record of professional learning activities? #njed

Gamification in the Classroom

Q1: How do you set up/use gamification in Edmodo?
Q2: What outside of Edmodo resources do you use to enhance gamification of your Edmodo groups? (class dojo?)
Q3: How can professional development sessions be gamified on Edmodo (ie outside resources mainly for badges/leaderboards since badges cannot be awarded to teacher accounts)
Q4: What product improvements would make gamification work more seamlessly in Edmodo?
Being a 21st Century Educator

Q1: What does it mean to be a 21st C educator?
Q2: Why is it important?
Q3: How do students benefit?
Q4: What types of activities/actions does this include?
Q5: How does tech play a role?
Q6: What challenges get in the way?
Q7: How to overcome these challenges?
Reading Instruction
Q1: How do you use Edmodo to facilitate reading instruction
Q2: What best practices can you share about using Edmodo for reading instruction?
Q3: How do you get students/teachers accustomed to reading digital texts?
Q4: What tools, in addition to Edmodo, can you use to facilitate reading instruction?
Q5: Have you heard of Snapshot or started using it?
Paperless Instruction and Grading
Q1: How do you use Edmodo to cut down on photocopying items for classes?
Q2: What things/activities can you do with Edmodo that you can’t do on paper?
Q3: What things/activities do you still do on paper? Why?

BYOT (Bring Your Own Technology)

Q1:  Is your campus/classroom allowing students to bring their own devices?
Q2: How are teachers responding? How are students responding?
Q3:  How did you and/or your campus communicate this initiative?
Q4:  How does Edmodo support you in your BYOD learning environment?
Q5:  How has BYOD changed your teaching style?
Q6:  How has Edmodo supported your new paradigm?
Q7:  What challenges, if any, have you encountered in your BYOD environment?
Q8:  What advice would you give to other educators that have concerns about going BYOD?
Staying Connected
Q1: How does staying connected with your Ss build that relationship or trust with your students?
Q2: Why is it important to stay connected with students during breaks?
Q3: What are some of your stories about staying connected w your Ss?
Q4: How do you use Edmodo to stay connected with Ss over breaks?
Q5: What other websites help you stay connected w your Ss besides Edmodo?
Q6: What are your overall best practices for staying connected?
Using Edmodo for Flipped PD

Q1: Do you currently use Edmodo to flip PD?  #Edmodochat
Q2: How is flipping PD with Edmodo different than traditional PD?  Pros? Cons? #Edmodochat
Q3: What things can’t you do when you flip PD with Edmodo that you’d like to do? #Edmodochat
Q4: How can you hold staff accountable to view flipped PD using Edmodo?  #edmodochat
Q5: What Edmodo tools can you use in conjunction with video hosting to flip PD? #edmodochat
Q6: What is your biggest take away regarding flipped PD with Edmodo? #edmodochat
Subject Area
Q1: How do you currently use Edmodo to facilitate instruction?
Q2: How can you get students to show their work on Edmodo instead of paper?
Q3: What things can’t you do with Edmodo that you’d like to do?
Q4: How can you do what you do differently with Edmodo?

Por supuestísimo, edmodo no ha de ser una red social que aumente las diferencias, ha de usarse bien, con un modelo coherente para evitar todo tipo de brecha digital, supone una herramienta de un valor inigualable para el maestro, tanto en el aula como fuera de ella, y símplemente ha de tener bien claro los objetivos a conseguir, la forma de usarla, de implementarla, de introducir su uso... y va a tener la herramienta del siglo XXI.
Actualicemos metodologías realmente y subámosnos al carro de la innovación REAL !