To kick off a new school year, the Kiddom Success Team has put together some recommendations to help you get the most out of Kiddom and start the semester strong. These tips and tricks will help you and your students engage and get ready to tackle another year!
Tip #1: Create a Getting to Know You Survey
Investing time in getting to know your students early in the school year is essential for building strong relationships that allow students to take academic risks and encourage open, honest feedback.
Using our Google Drive integration, you can create a survey in Google Docs and share it with your students in Kiddom. They’ll each receive a private, personal copy organized automatically in a Kiddom folder in your Drive. Our assignment settings make it easy to share this without it counting towards a grade to ensure that students aren’t afraid to be honest.
You can also align your survey to any of the CASEL standards for social emotional learning — we suggest the competencies that measure Self-Awareness and Relationship Skills. Once students have submitted their responses, you can comment directly on the Google Doc or use Kiddom’s commenting features to start a dialogue that will last all year.
Tip form Melissa Giroux, School Success Lead
Tip #2: Make Every Assignment Unique…and Engaging!
It’s simple: When you give students meaningful, engaging assignments, they’ll appreciate the material, and they’ll appreciate you.
Bellwork, exit tickets, and other re-engagement activities can be crucial for retaining information, and Kiddom’s K-12 Library lets you easily offer exciting and engaging materials for all subjects. You can then use our Playlists to organize and store all of your saved videos, interactives, games, and more without hours of searching or planning. Your Playlists will be ready to go with a simple drag-and drop!
Let’s start by creating an assignment in a Playlist. The Playlist will be saved in your Planner, so you can easily drag and drop your classwork for each day whenever you’re ready to assign, without creating the assignment over and over again. Within your Playlist, you can make an assignment for each day and attach content from the Library (or your own…or both!), standards, points/rubrics, and assignment type. Use your Playlists to group lessons, resources, videos, assignment types — whatever works best with how you’re organized.
When you’re creating an assignment in your Playlist, click the Kiddom “K” logo to access our content library. With about 100,000 resources, we have exactly what you need: videos, interactives, practices, and more, for all subject areas.
Simply select your grade level, subject, and if you want, where you’d like to see the resources from or resource type. This will generate all of the content we have for your subject and grade. You can also use keywords like “American Revolution” or “Molecules” to narrow down your search. Preview the content to see if it’s the right fit and then click select to attach it to the assignment.
Since Playlists live in your Planner, you can carry them with you from class to class. When a new week starts, simply edit the assignment to add new content/change due dates/points or rubrics.
Tip from Shabbir Manjee, Support Specialist
Tip #3: Create and Assign Class Roles
Clear and consistent routines and procedures can make or break classroom management systems. When I was an 8th grade teacher, I often wished I could multiply myself to get it all done. So I did! I created a list of “class roles” for students to act on, such as homework recorder, office assistant, and tech assistant. This gave them the chance to practice taking on more responsibility while freeing me to focus on instruction.
Not only do class roles give students greater agency — if done right, they can be an orderly foundation for your class culture.
How can I implement this in my class?
- Think of tasks students can carry out to help the flow of the day or period. You know your class and students best, but feel free to use our resource of possible class roles and descriptions.
- Create an assignment for each role in Kiddom. Write out the descriptions in student-friendly language so they will be able to understand the expectations when it is their turn.
- Create a Playlist of class roles that you can drag and drop into your Timeline and assign them to different students throughout the year.
- Go over the roles and expectations as you would routines and procedures. Depending on your students, you may need to model it, review it mid-year, or have them sign up. Ask them to master it and then teach the next student for you.
That’s it! Enable your students to contribute to the class and give yourself a break.
Tip from Nicole Plante, Support Specialist
Tip #4: Start a Student Club! Run By Students, Powered by Kiddom
Teachers using Kiddom know it’s a great way to plan, organize, and assess student progress throughout a school year. But did you know you can also use Kiddom to power student-run clubs?
If you are an advisor for a student extracurricular, whether it’s student government, debate team, or the anime club, you know it’s a lot of work to get members the information they need about upcoming events, trips, fundraisers, and meetings. You’ve probably found yourself wondering how you can put more of the onus on your students to get it done. That’s where Kiddom can help.
If you want to give student club officers control of their clubs, it’s as simple as creating a teacher account for them to use on Kiddom.
Just set it up with credentials for students by creating a student officer email account, then use that account to sign up with Kiddom as a teacher. This account can be used each year as new students take leadership roles in your activity.
Here is an example:
Class: Debate Team
Teacher: Ms. G
Collaborators: Debate Team Leaders
Now your students have access to the same posting and commenting abilities that you have, putting student-run clubs back in the hands of students.
Do your student officers need to distribute an itinerary for a upcoming club trip? Do they need to vote on a revision to club by-laws? They can easily post documents, questions, and polls for their club members with this account!
In addition, these student club leaders will have the ability to assign members of the club individual tasks and goals; just like you would do in an academic Kiddom class. Meaning, not only can your club become officially student-run, but your student leaders will be able to distribute tasks and assignments to groups of club members in order to get everyone invested in club goals and activities.
Once your students have access to their club’s Kiddom course, the possibilities for student ownership are endless!
Tip from Sarah Gantert, Success Specialist
We hope you find these hacks for using Kiddom fun and exciting! Let us know how you’re using Kiddom by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, and be sure to sign up for our newsletter below for the latest news, guides, resources, and more!