The proliferation of the Internet and mainstream access to devices has opened the floodgates of opportunity for 21st century learning. Hardware, educational games, apps, cloud-based software, and mobile have effectively redefined the way learning is experienced worldwide. Two crucial components of a successful education ecosystem are content creation and collaboration; writing and expressing ideas clearly and concisely, presenting them effectively, analyzing and critiquing them, and learning from peers and teachers. These are the quintessential reasons all of us go to school.
On Edmodo, teachers and students are interacting with content and resources every day. Many of the educators on our platform create their own worksheets and quizzes, then share them in their Edmodo Groups or Communities so other teachers can use them. Similarly, we see teachers sharing content that they’ve found online with their peers, from a Khan Academy video, to a new gamified math app. In fact, we’ve had more than two hundred million resources shared on the platform. With a plethora of available content, teachers are redefining curriculum parameters as we’ve known them in a traditional sense. But, like in other areas of digital learning, it’s difficult to sift through and identify which resources to use.
Today at ISTE 2015, we’re excited to announce two initiatives that will further enhance content capabilities on Edmodo for educators and students around the world. First off, we’re integrating Microsoft Office 365 into our platform to connect users with outstanding cloud productivity technologies that enable a next generation learning environment. Microsoft’s tools in this sphere have a long and respected history and we are delighted to be able to bring them to our users.
As teachers and students create content on Edmodo, they’ll have access to tools in Office 365’s suite of online productivity tools including the award winning OneNote, PowerPoint, Excel, and Word. Sway and Office Mix, tools that both students and educators love, will also seamlessly blend into the Edmodo experience. OneDrive integration will let users store and share their work from within Edmodo. Finally, the integration affords schools who have adopted Office 365 to log into Edmodo with their secure, robust and private Microsoft accounts.
Secondly, we’re unveiling Edmodo Spotlight, a content marketplace that empowers educators to collect, share, and discover valuable educational resources to improve student learning. Capitalizing on the power of the Edmodo network, educators can review resources from all over the web, curate collections of their favorites, and sell and purchase original material from their peers, as well as from third-party publishers. Additionally, educators can search by grade level, subject area, resource type, and price point, making it quick and easy to find specific types of resources. Our goal with Edmodo Spotlight is two-fold: to provide teachers the opportunity to share their original content, and to better sort educational resources in a crowd-sourced fashion, so that the best materials are surfaced and used in the right way to advance student learning.
At Edmodo, we’re committed to building and integrating new tools that ultimately save educators time. From the beginning, we’ve wanted to connect learners with the people and resources they need to reach their full potential. With Microsoft’s content capabilities and Edmodo Spotlight, we’re looking forward to making great strides in evolving our learning ecosystem and making our founding vision a reality.