I clicked it to see what it was about, since it didn't seem like there was a description for it; unless I missed it. I also assumed that's what it was about. I'll try to finish it; Github itself never seemed "noob" friendly to me. It seemed like the people on it were past what I knew. I also "use" CodePen, but that's got more of a loner vibe to it. I usually test/try things out there, and leave my stuff untagged so it'll be somewhat "private."
Since you weren't there for the appearance and are asking about it; groups were basically separate parts of the website for you and your group members. It wasn't anything super magical, but it was the only thing on Codecaemy where you could interact with other users outside of the forums. The people in charge of the group I was in came up with ideas and things to help practice our coding. They had a list of resources for those that needed help with certain aspects of their code. It's been such a while it's hard to remember it all, but I think they were doing it as a sort of group timed challenge. So when you were finished, you could link it in the comments section of the project you joined and everyone could see how you did the project. They also used those opportunities to give/ask for feedback. But they, mostly had a "code at your own pace" sort of vibe, at least that's what I always felt. Basically, it was like unofficial projects on Codecademy.
I had actually been looking through the Job Opportunities and Collaborative Work category, since that seemed closer to what I was trying to do. But the people I saw in it were more into an ongoing project.
As it stands, it feels like I'm just doing stuff by myself. Which I guess is fine, but I have no real direction. My group gave me a direction, it gave me a reason to try and use this stuff. I guess basically what I liked about groups, and what I want here in general, is a dedicated spot for projects for people who can't come up with their own. Since I'm not very creative, that's really why I joined the group I was in. I saw they were relatively active, and created slightly different projects from Codecademy that allowed me to attempt to practice more of what I learned. Also, seeing other people's version of the same project made me rethink some of the choices I made in my own. So whether it's made into a weekly thing or not, as long as there in a list in one spot, I think that would be helpful. They don't even have to be made by CC staff, just as long as there's a specific spot for them.
I'm glad that private messages are a thing now, it's nice to have the opportunity to talk to others outside of a post.