As the co-founders of ClassDojo know, you’ve got to deliver a tool to teachers that they need if they’re going to use it. They don’t have the time or resources to waste on tools that don’t make their classroom a better educational experience for their students. One of the problems a number of education technology entrepreneurs makes is that they develop something to use in the classroom by just assuming its something teachers need.
The team at ClassDojo didn’t make this rookie mistake. As one of its co-founders, Sam Chaudhary explains, they brought teachers into the process of developing their app on day one. Throughout the development of the app they sought teachers opinions on how to make the app better and also received the input of students and parents. This informed the app developers and gave them a way to release something that many teachers now regard as vital to their classroom success.
ClassDojo is a mobile app which facilitates a classroom community by making it very easy for teachers, students, and parents to communicate in real-time. They can send text, pictures, and videos to one another, all without knowing each other’s phone numbers. The teacher creates a virtual class in the app and then invites their students and their parents to join it. Parents who stay involved in their child’s education and know what’s going on in class are a huge help in the successful educational outcome of students.
2 in 3 schools in America now use the ClassDojo app. It is intended for K-8 graders. As they have translated the app to many languages it is also used by teachers around the world in their classrooms. It’s a communication platform that is far better than the old days of parents and teachers just talking once or twice a year during a parent-teacher conference.
The basic message to edtech firms is to not take a “build it and they will come” attitude because you’re setting your business up for failure. Instead, engage the community you are developing the app for like ClassDojo did which led to the stunning success of this company.