Managing Your Assignments, Students, and Activities with Ease with ClassOwl
I couldn’t help but appreciate teacher John Balash’s enthusiasm for ClassOwl. As we start a new school year, this is the kind of upbeat go-get-‘em attitude (and a good tool!) that can inspire us to try new things and continuously improve how we interact with students and enable their learning. – KW
I finally found it. After 6 years of hunting for a teaching tool to help me manage the hectic start of school year season, I discovered ClassOwl. This simple and easy-to-use app for teachers helps to make sure students are on-track, better organized, and effectively learning time management.
With the whirlwind of the new material and getting orientated to new classrooms each year, it is important to start off on the right track. Here is my approach and my story … one teacher on a mission to change his school by enabling teachers with technology.
We’ve all thought of ways to improve learning and promote good study habits in our classrooms. A while back, as the head of the creative technologies department, I decided to take this on myself. I designed a web portal for both teachers and students to keep on track. This took a lot of time and although I used it for my classes, it was never fully finished or adopted. I eventually moved on.
I later joined a different side of the classroom as a Masters Degree student studying educational technology. That’s where I found ClassOwl. They were striving (as students, mind you) for exactly what I had imagined for my school. The ClassOwl founders were students at Stanford who found that it was difficult to keep track of schoolwork and to reach out to teachers when they didn't know what to do. Like most students, the lack of or inconsistent information overwhelmed them. Out of their need as students and their instructors' desire to get information easily and quickly to their classes, they created ClassOwl. This unique blend of student teacher collaboration resulted in a remarkably simple and intuitive app.
What ClassOwl can do for you and Your Students
ClassOwl is a planning app teachers use to communicate directly with students on their personal devices. Planning and organizing does not have to involve clunky learning management systems or homebrewed solutions. In the exceptionally clean interface, it’s easy to manage classes, tasks, and students. Every homework deadline and assignment is organized in a daily task list for students. Comments between students and teachers on assignments are pushed instantly so that everyone is one the same page. There’s even a tool that allows teachers to estimate the time required for a given task.
This gives our students a heads up on what they have yet to tackle… and the best part, is that it’s extremely simple. Even the busiest teacher can have their students hit the ground learning from day one and know how to keep them engaged and on task throughout their educational career.
I soon introduced ClassOwl to my high school, Grand River Academy. After the spring pilot, the entire school has adopted and embraced ClassOwl – students and teachers alike! Students even reported less daily stress, and our teachers noticed a significant decrease in the number of late homework assignments… as a result, everyone was happier and more confident in the classroom.
Having one, unified space for all things school related gave our teachers and students what pen, paper, and other learning management systems (over even a mega-devoted tech instructor) could never offer: Clear uncluttered organization with instant communication anytime and anywhere.
Now with web and mobile options available, there’s every reason to rethink organization and engagement in your classroom. There are few apps available that work with both students and teachers to change the classroom. You can try it before ClassOwl’s public launch at www.classowl.com and sign up with the code: IMATEACHER. It’s beautiful, it works, it’s ClassOwl.
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