Our group decided to investigate Edmodo, a Learning Management System (LMS) that is created in the metaphor of a social network, such as Facebook. I’m always looking for ways to improve the work that I do with the kids in my after school enrichment programs, and an application such as Edmodo showed potential for creating an environment where kids could communicate with one another in a participatory culture (Jenkins, H., 2006) around the work they did ‘in the classroom’, which in my case means the game table. While my own reflections on our group explorations led me to conclude that this platform is not ideal for my own specific purposes, the process of group investigation allowed me to experience a collaborative learning project first-hand with skilled and dedicated partners.
Our group had a few veteran users of Edmodo, and several novices, which was a great way to model a participatory culture in our own investigations. We used the Edmodo platform for the basis of our communications into the exploration of Edmodo itself, which allowed for our group to gain a deep understanding of the application’s benefits and constraints of the application. We also collected our thoughts more formally with a shared Google document, which allowed us to contribute and see each others’ additions and corrections. We quickly discovered our individual and group strengths, and allocated work based on capability and interest. Between these two platforms, working both synchronously and asynchronously, collaboratively and on our own, we were able to easily share our reflections and collaborate on our presentation and report materials.