Whether you’re sending carefully crafted letters or leaving personal voice mails — supporting each student takes time. This is why we’re so excited about Chat. 🙂 With Chat, teachers now have the option to start a safe, simple conversation with a student or parent in their class. We’ve worked with educators around the world to ensure Chat is easy to use, while offering important controls (like Office Hours) to help teachers manage communication.
We hope that by saving you time, Chat will let you focus on building one-on-one relationships with students and parents. Try out some of these ideas while you’re getting started with Chat in your classroom:
1. Build relationships
Use Remind Chat to build a stronger connection to students and parents and reach them instantly on their mobile devices. Long gone are the days of having to collect email addresses or having to exchange personal contact information! Safely and instantly Chat with students and parents by having them subscribe to your Remind class on the app, e-mail, or through SMS text. Through this, you’ll be able to build relationships both at school and at home through instant communication.
2. Personalize communication and support
While Remind Announcements allow teachers to send one-way messages to a small group or their entire class, there are often circumstances in which teachers want to connect with an individual student or an individual parent.
“Chat will help me offer clarification and special notes of praise to my students and parents to make my students’ educational experiences more effective and individualized!” – Jessica Deon, 5th grade teacher
Personalize communication and support for each student and their family by engaging in a Chat. Start a Chat for:
- Special education students and communicating IEPs
- Providing feedback on individual projects like term papers, reports, and more
- Supporting individual students during the college application process
- Gifted and talented students and providing specialized resources
- Providing additional support and resources for ELL students
- Instantly reaching any student on their phone after he/she has left your classroom
Setting up Office Hours on Chat allows you to manage your time while reaching individual students effectively. With an entire class of students, it can be a challenge to differentiate and support each student.
When students realize that communication from their teacher is personalized and focuses on their needs, they become more engaged. Showing students that you care can go a long way in motivating them to work towards success.
3. Practice digital citizenship
Now that students can respond to their teachers on Remind, it provides an excellent opportunity for practicing digital citizenship skills. Students frequently use their phones for engaging in social conversation, but with Chat, they can see how mobile messaging can be used for learning. Practicing good digital citizenship skills not only helps students use technology for learning, but it also helps them to develop a positive digital footprint as they grow.
We’ve teamed up with Common Sense Media to produce some helpful resources to use Chat to practice good digital citizenship with your students:
These resources help students to practice digital citizenship both in the classroom and at home, so that it becomes an integral part of their lives.
4. Make 1:1 and BYOD classrooms fun and interactive
Chat is a helpful feature to use in your BYOD or 1:1 classroom because it allows teachers to reach all students on their devices instantly and provide personalized feedback. Michael Donnolley, a fourth grade teacher from Texas, says, “With the addition of Chat, teachers now have another way to get instant feedback from students.” Michael uses Chat for:
- Effective communication and assistance: Students chat their teacher questions during in-class independent or group work on their mobile devices.
- Engaging activities: Chat with students during a scavenger hunt or a webquest. Also, try out this activity to bring characters or historical figures to life through text!
- Research projects: Students can Chat resources to their teacher, who can later curate them into a class list for reference.
With Chat’s recorded message history transcript, you can also access students’ messages at any time for parent-teacher conferences, or as another form of evaluation.
5. Establish a work-life balance
Teachers are busy, and technology shouldn’t add more work! It’s important to try and establish a healthy work-life balance to avoid teacher burnout. As teachers, we naturally want to do everything within our power to help students succeed, but if you don’t make time for yourself, you won’t have your full energy to support students.
Through Chat, teachers can set up Office Hours for times when parents and students can request to Chat with them. With Office Hours, you can create opportunities for parents or students to contact you instantly outside of the classroom without infringing on your personal time. This can also overcome obstacles around in-person tutoring or parents’ busy schedules.
Contest: Why start a Chat?
We want to hear how Chat will affect classroom communication around the world! Tweet or post to Facebook with #RemindChat why you will start a Chat for a chance to win a GoPro for your classroom:
Our Teacher Advisory Board will be selecting the winning entry, and all ideas will be compiled and featured on our blog. Share your idea with #RemindChat by Wednesday, 4/29 at 6PM PST for your chance to win! Happy chatting. 🙂
Watch below for inspiration to use a GoPro in your classroom from Michael Buist!