ClassDojo for parents, teachers, and students is a free communication app. The app can be used in a positive way to track student progress, get involved, learn more about your child’s school day, and teach positive online behaviors. If your children’s teachers use ClassDojo, follow our advice below to keep your family safe and smart online.
Watch this ClassDojo for Parents, Teachers, & Students Guide as a video
What is ClassDojo?
- ClassDojo is a free communication app designed for teachers, parents, and students
- Teachers can share classroom photos, video, or announcements with parents
- Parents can instant message their child’s teacher
- Teachers can encourage students for skills and values, such as working hard, being kind, and teamwork
- Students can showcase their knowledge by adding photos and videos to their digital portfolios
- ClassDojo can be used by teachers to display activity instructions to the whole class
- The app works on any iOS device, Android device, Kindle Fire, smart board, or computer
ClassDojo has 4 main components
The Classroom is where teachers and students choose skills or values to encourage and share feedback on progress with each other
Stories are an updated stream of images, videos, and announcements from the day. Every class, school, and student has their own Story
Messages is where teachers and parents can talk one-on-one or in a group. Teachers can set “quiet hours” to let parents know when they are offline
Big Ideas is original content that helps students learn about important concepts and social-emotional skills
- Used by teachers in 1 of every 2 schools, ClassDojo is the most popular classroom management app in the U.S.
- Actively used in 90% of K-8 schools in the US, and in over 180 countries
- 1 in 3 US kids aged 5-14 have learned about Growth Mindset and Empathy with ClassDojo
Why should parents care?
- Some security experts in Britain caution educators and parents from using this app, however it is Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule (COPPA)-compliant and ClassDojo says only students, their teachers, and their parents can see their information
- If parents want to remove their child’s data from ClassDojo, they must ask the teacher or email the company
- Parents need to be aware that the app’s point based disciplinary system has drawn criticism from some experts for turning good behavior into a contest
- Students can only view or like content on stories and are only able to do so once either the school or ClassDojo has obtained parental consent, if the student is under the age of 13
ClassDojo in the News:
Academic studies have found that ClassDojo helped to increase students’ positivity, self-control and engagement and to reduce behavioral problems. –Forbes
Since its launch in June 2011, ClassDojo has rapidly diffused throughout classrooms across the U.S. and around the world. Along with paper, pencils and whiteboards, the app is among the few pieces of technology that have become ubiquitous in K-8 classrooms. –Inc.
Some parents, teachers and privacy law scholars say ClassDojo, along with other unproven technologies that record sensitive information about students, is being adopted without sufficiently considering the ramifications for data privacy and fairness, like where and how the data might eventually be used. –NY Times
The Times raised privacy concerns, highlighting how [ClassDojo’s] data was stored in the US ‘and, under its terms, some may be shared with the 22 third-party service providers it works with, including Facebook and Google’. –Guardian
What students says about ClassDojo:
ClassDojo is so cool! There are so many things we learn and do at school that we wish our parents could see, and now they can! Teachers, students and our parents all work together to make our time in school worth every minute. –TEDx talk by Brianna, student in Washington
What parents says about ClassDojo:
At the end of the day when I pick [up my son], I can just be like ‘Hey, how did this go in class?’ instead of him saying ‘Well, I didn’t do anything in class today.’ You don’t have to be playing the guessing game when they get out of school. –Hilary, mother
What teachers says about ClassDojo:
I love using the messenger app to communicate with parents because it’s as easy as sending a text. I love that I can send them pictures too! The random tool is a great way for me to call on students or to monitor them without them knowing that I am going to call on them. –Griselda, elementary school teacher
What can parents do?
- Regardless of whether or not your child’s teachers use ClassDojo, be actively involved with their school life and have daily discussions about what they did in the classroom. Ask open ended questions and get in the habit of having this conversation after school everyday
- Questions to ask your children to start a dialog:
- What was your favorite thing you learned today?
- What was your biggest struggle?
- What was something that made you smile?
- What is an achievement you are proud of today?
- In addition to academics, encourage your children to build their social intelligence
- Tools like ClassDojo can help students build social intelligence but other methods are:
- Learning to sense other people’s feelings
- Being aware of how you come across to others
- Determining a place, ritual or activity that helps you process emotions and situations
- Interacting with empathy or not interacting at all
- If you’re in conflict with someone, put yourself in their shoes
- Teach your children that face-to-face interactions are still important, even if their school uses digital methods for tracking their students’ progress
ClassDojo can be used in a positive way to track student progress, get involved, learn more about your child’s school day, and teach positive online behaviors. If your children’s teachers use ClassDojo, follow our advice above to keep your family safe and smart online. Parents can use ClassDojo to start a dialog with their children and help them build social intelligence. ClassDojo should not be a substitute for face-to-face lessons and hands-on learning activities.
While some experts have privacy concerns with ClassDojo, their Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule (COPPA)-compliance means they must get parental consent before collecting certain types of information from children under 13. So, if ClassDojo is being used at your student’s school it is important to have privacy and security settings in place.
We want to hear from you! Does your student’s school use ClassDojo? Let us know in the comments below.