I am across something interesting today that peeked my interest. I came across this app for both Android and iPhone called Remind101. Usually, I’m all for using technology in the class, but I have mixed feelings about an app like this. I can see both good and bad things about this app. It can be very useful for the teacher-parent communication aspect. At the same time, I see it as a crutch on the teacher-student communication aspect.
According to the description in iTunes, Remind101 is a “safe way for teachers to text message students and stay in touch with parents”. With this app, teachers never see the student’s number and students don’t get the teacher’s number. The teacher can send a mass text to either the class or the parents at one time. There aren’t any ads, it’s free, and you can send unlimited text messages.
One the teacher-parent side, I can see it being very useful. Teachers can text the parents as reminders for things such as open house (which their kids may not have told them), big assignment deadlines, and even behavioral issues. Parents could use to notify the teacher that their child is sick (not sure if this actually would happen) or that they are running late for a teacher’s conference. I definitely see the importance for the teacher and the parents to communicate.
However on the teacher-student side, I am having trouble seeing the true benefits. One the description, it was mentioned that students could receive text messages saying their assignment is due the following morning or that their test is on Monday. I feel that this not helping the students. I remember when I was in school and we didn’t have text messages. We honestly couldn’t even have our phones on. Our only reminder was when the teacher mentioned it…..in class! If we forgot, o well. I think that being doing this, it’s taking away the student’s responsibility of writing down their homework and deadlines. At least in my way of thinking, I would figure what’s the point of coping down the assignment when my teacher will text it to me.
Overall, I’m still on the fence on this. Again, it would be great from the teacher-parent standpoint but for the teacher-student aspect, I can’t get past my feelings. Hopefully, someone can help me “see the light”.