Towards the end of the 2014 academic year in Australia I came across an app that the rest of the world (particularly the US) seemed to know about but very few teachers ‘down under’ had heard of. It was Remind.
With #aussieED (the little edchat that could) growing ever larger and now easily being one of the largest edchats globally, we needed a way to connect with teachers who are online but not always on Twitter. I had been on the hunt to find a way to reach these teachers and I found it through Remind.
Teachers are encouraged to download the app and link to the aussieED class. Once done, it is very easy for us as a team to be able to send information directly to those who are most interested in the content that we provide.
In the same way, teachers can link to the parents of their class and send information instantaneously. A teacher could let parents know that the details of a key event have changed, they could keep parents informed about the pedagogy that is going on in the classroom and they could even ‘Remind’ people of important information.
We needed a way to connect with teachers who are online but not always on Twitter.
I have spoken with a number of Australian high-school teachers in 2015 who, now that they are aware of Remind, are experimenting with using it to keep contact with their classes outside of the regular set class times. They are able to support students working on assignments and give clarity to set tasks amongst other things.
One of the other reasons why I like the Remind app so much is that no contact information is exchanged. The parents never know private details of the teacher and all correspondence is done through the app. Currently the teacher controls the flow of information and very soon an app upgrade will allow chat back and forth between parents and teachers during set hours. This will be controlled by the teacher and the same strict privacy settings will be applied.
In short, we may not have been the first to discover Remind, but in a time where information is instant and where parents and teachers both crave strong bonds between home and school we certainly don’t want to flinch when an app that is easy to use and so effective stares us in the face. The best part is you download and use it free! What more could a teacher ask for?
Feature image adapted from image courtesy of Flickr, brizzle born and bred.