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Schoolwires Launches Social Learning Platform for Grades K-12

Schoolwires has released Nimbus, a hosted social learning platform developed to increase student and teacher engagement in grades K-12.

Nimbus provides tools for the creation of online communities among students, classes, clubs, teachers, parents, and administrators. It uses social, instructional, and community networking.

Upon logging in, the user will see his or her dashboard, recent activity in the account through the news feed, and five tabs to select from: my profile, my albums, my classes, my documents, and my calendar. The profile tab allows users to edit profile information that is viewable by other online community users. Albums allow users to view and create photo albums. My classes allows users to select which classes or groups they want to enter. Inside each class is a menu with the following options: class home, mini-feed, work space, member directory, assignment, calendar and events, discussion board, wall posts, chat online, email class, poll, blog, and class albums. Districts can create an unlimited number of classes. My documents lets users upload documents for online storage and my calendar allows students to input event information specific to them.

Other features include:

  • Profanity filters, user activity logs, and user, group, and role-based permission controls;
  • The ability to make online communities public or private;
  • Access controls to view who is participating in online communities; and
  • Support for Common Core State Standards and the International Society for Technology in Education's National Educational Technology Standards for Students.

"Nimbus will provide the middle ground we need to develop 21st-century readiness skills in our students in a controlled environment," said Mike Shuman, director of technology at Beavercreek City Schools in Ohio. "Schools need to control their learning environments, whether it is in the classroom or online, and Facebook is too wide open. With Nimbus, we can control and see who is joining learning communities and what is being done within them. Yet the interface is similar to other social media platforms that the students are used to. This is a strong tool to engage students and support our anywhere anytime learning initiative."

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About the Author

Tim Sohn is a 10-year veteran of the news business, having served in capacities from reporter to editor-in-chief of a variety of publications including Web sites, daily and weekly newspapers, consumer and trade magazines, and wire services. He can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @editortim.