Are you looking for ways for teachers and students to communicate through Otus? You can use the Mailbox, Class Board, Blog, or Bookshelf for communicating with your students.

Article Table of Contents:


Mailbox

βœ… Best Use: Sending direct messages to a student or family member's email inbox

πŸ€” How It Works: The Basics

πŸ”Ž A Closer Look at The Details

  • Teachers can send a message to:

    • Individual students and/or family members.

    • Multiple students and/or family members.

    • The entire class of students and/or corresponding family members.

  • Teachers can add an image attachment to the message.

    • If the teacher wants to add a different type of attachment, they can upload the attachment to the internet (for example, to their Google Drive) and add a hyperlink within the message.

  • Teachers can choose to send the message immediately or schedule a time to send the message.

  • Teachers can see their sent messages within Otus.

  • Students and families do not have a mailbox module.

    • Students are not able to send a direct message to teachers through Otus.

    • Families are able to send a direct messages to teachers through Otus, but not in a mailbox module. For more information, check out this resource.

❓ What Makes the Mailbox Different than Class Board, Blog, or Bookshelf

  • It uses the actual email inbox; this is the only area of Otus that reaches outside of the Otus platform to send messages directly to users.

    • The messages are received in the recipient's actual email inbox (like Gmail or Yahoo), not within Otus.

    • Students and family members can reply from their email inbox; therefore they are starting a chain of emails between themselves and the teacher.

  • Text messages

    • These messages can be sent as text messages in addition to emails.

  • Can message individuals

    • Teachers can choose individual students and/or family members (the other methods only allow you to send/post at the class level, not the individual student level).

  • Attachments

    • The only attachment that can be added to a mailbox message is an image (other file types must be added as hyperlinks within the message itself).


Class Board

βœ… Best Use: Making an announcement or distributing information to students and/or families

πŸ€” How It Works: The Basics

*Family members can’t comment on Class Board posts. Family members can’t see comments made by students other than their own.

πŸ”Ž A Closer Look at the Details

  • Class Board posts are visible to the entire class and all family members.

  • Teachers can add many different types of attachments to posts: files, images, video recordings, audio recordings, Google Docs, PDFs, and more.

  • Teachers can choose to publish the post immediately or schedule a time for the post to publish in the future.

  • Teachers can "pin" a post to the top of the Class Board so that it remains the first post seen when the Class Board is entered.

  • Students are not able to create Class Board posts, but they can comment on them.


Blog

βœ… Best Use: Having conversational-style communication and/or want students to initiate the communication

πŸ€” How it Works: The Basics

*Family members can’t comment on Blog posts. Family members can’t see comments made by students other than their own.

πŸ”Ž A Closer Look at The Details

  • Both teachers and students can publish blog posts.

  • Blog posts are visible to the entire class and all family members.

  • Teachers can add many different types of attachments to posts: files, images, video recordings, audio recordings, Google Docs, PDFs, and more.

  • Teachers can choose to publish the post immediately or schedule a time for the post to publish in the future.


Bookshelf

βœ… Best Use: Distributing resources to students (individual, groups, or entire classes) that will be kept on their Bookshelf.

πŸ€” How it Works: The Basics

πŸ”Ž A Closer Look at The Details

  • Both teachers and students can upload and share resources from their bookshelf.

    • Students can only share with teachers (not with other students).

  • Each account has its own Bookshelf; it is not a shared feed like the Blog or Class Board

  • Many different resource formats can be uploaded: files, images, video recordings, audio recordings, Google Docs, PDFs, and more.

  • The Bookshelf serves as a "library" or a collection of resources that are kept in a central location.


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