Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Say What? #edtech

More appropriately, text what? Your students text. We all know that.  All we have to do is look at our own cell phone bills to see how often we as adults text.  But, we would never think of texting a student, right?  I'm not sure where I stand on tonight's application and if you are going to try it yourself, make sure it meets with your districts policies.  I'm simply sharing information. I'm fairly certain that ClassParrot would not fly (what a terrible pun) in mine.  Here is a good opportunity for a disclaimer.  I am in no way endorsing this product and if you choose to use it make sure it is with the blessing of your employer.
But, I do understand thought behind ClassParrot, which is designed to tap into a technology that students are already using, in this case texting.  Here's the basics.  You have a computer.  Your students have phones.  Using said computer you sign up for a free ClassParrot account and set up your class.  You then tell the students or parents to text a provided keyword to a number (also provided).  Once everyone is enrolled, you use ClassParrot to send messages to the participants.  You will never see the student or parents cell phone numbers but will be able to keep them up to date on "upcoming exams, send homework and reminder events" They also have a poll feature that could turn your students phones into response clickers. 
Again, I get it.  And, I think it's an interesting idea for communicationg very general information.  I could see this being used as an alternate form of communication between school and parent.  School closings, reminders about events, schedule changes, etc... But couldn't you accomplish most of the same thing with Twitter?
I'm truly interested in your opinions.  Would you ever consider using ClassParrot? Drop a comment and again I am not endorsing ClassParrot, so don't blame me if you use it and find yourself in hot water.  If you read my other disclaimer, you already know the views and opinions expressed here in no way reflect the views or opinions of my employeer.  OK, that's enough covering myself for now. :-)
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