Day 3: An “A to Z” Guide of Apps & Web 2.0

Today’s Tool: Celly

One of the advantages of 21st century technology tools is the ability to communicate quickly with our students and their parents. And now that the vast majority of the students in our (high school) classrooms have cell phones with texting capabilities, communication has never been easier.

Students are busy. They are in school all day, then many leave to participate in a sport, extra or co-curricular activity, or they head off to their part time jobs. Having the ability to send students quick reminders about homework, an upcoming test, quiz, or presentation, or important information about a field trip (especially their permission slips) via a cell phone is a huge advantage that didn’t exist when I was a student in high school, or in college for that matter. Although my daughter is in elementary school and doesn’t have a cell phone, I know that if she was in high school right now and could receive updates or reminders from her teachers via text message, I’d certainly want her to take advantage of that. As a busy mom, I’d also appreciate the updates via a text.

Celly is a tool that teachers can use for two-way communication with students and parents via text, email, the Celly website, or through the Celly app. What’s great is that no phone numbers are exchanged when using Celly, making it a safe and private communication tool, appropriate for an educational setting. Beyond text messaging, Celly can be used to create polls and surveys, curate class discussions, and to moderate discussions of various sizes.

The Celly website is filled with tutorials, testimonials from other educators, instructions on how to join for students and parents, and a sample parent permission slip. If you are looking for a way to use a form of social media in your classroom, take a look at Celly. There is both a free and a premium version which is $5.00 per month for educators. If you haven’t yet ventured into integrating the use of cell phones in (and outside) the classroom as a means to connect with and engage your students, 2014 is the perfect time to start, and Celly may just be the tool you have been looking for!


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