Changes to the Repl.it Teaching Environment
This post is aimed at teachers who are teaching our materials in Term 4 2020. If you’re formally in our programmes, you should have received an email.
What’s happened to repl.it classrooms?
We can no longer use repl.it classrooms. This means teachers can’t “import and teach” a classroom, invite students to use the classroom, and track their progress on exercises. You should stop using classrooms immediately, as it’s pretty likely it’ll be turned off within a few weeks.
What’s replacing it?
There is a new “teams” product replacing the classroom. It is more about collaboration, and less about replicating the features of a learning management system.
One useful feature for us is that students can sign up anonymously using a username and a password, without providing an email address or their name.
You’ll also find that the new teams product is faster and slicker, and the problems we had with csinsc.py are resolved.
What has changed for CS in Schools?
Student and teacher signup is simpler, and the exercises are now accessible through a webpage. However, you need to ask your students to submit the URLs of their work through email or your LMS (eg. Canvas). You can no longer track student progress in a classroom as part of repl.it.
Note that students can’t reset their passwords, since they don’t have an email address associated with their account. It’s really important you collect students’ usernames and passwords and save them somewhere!
What happens next?
We need to move the remaining exercises over to the web pages, which we’ll do over the next week or so.
We will evaluate the teams product more deeply and chat to the repl.it folks over the next few months. It’s possible we may use the teams product more deeply next year.
Good luck in Term 4!