Week 6: Wiki-wiki

The CoolCat Teacher’s blog was a nice resource.  I liked that she outlined how the students should be editing the wiki. It’s one thing to ask them to post and respond, but another to give an example of what it feels like for a student to ask a question and not get a response.  This is a nice example to give the students to remind them to make edits and correct spelling.   She also does a good job of reiterating how essential it is to document sources and create hyperlinks.  Because this page could be potentially viewed by people around the world, it needs to be a good source of information – something the students can be proud of!

As an avid Wikispace user myself, I like the outline of the time in class. It was also interested to see how the wikis are being used. I, too, use them collaboratively in my classroom but each student groups is working together.  When we finish, the wiki is a finished product, and therefore, complete.  It was interesting to see wikis that are in constant change and edit, like Wikipedia.

On a side note, one way that my students and I get around the “you can only have one person edit a page at a time” rule on wikis is to use GoogleDocs.  You can make them public and google-searchable however, it allows for everyone to edit at the same time – and you can go back to an earlier edit if something you wanted get deleted!

  • What type of knowledge building activities do you see going on in these different sites?
  • How do you see the quality of knowledge building being monitored in large public wikis and the smaller wikis?

In the two different classroom site with Friedman’s The World Is Flat, students were working collaboratively with students from around the globe.  This is a great idea, not only to get the point of view of others, but to understand and learn from a different culture too. Plus, it makes editing the wiki simple, as only one user can edit the page at a time!

On larger sites, like the Chem group on Wikispedia, the quality of knowledge is being monitored much more carefully.  Instead of 15 students from Bangladesh making considerations about what needed to be changed, you have people – young and old – from around the world doing just that.  It allows for a great population of knowledge to make the edits and decisions on what is important.

3 thoughts on “Week 6: Wiki-wiki

  1. eimpagliatelli

    I appreciate your reference to GoogleDocs. I see many similarities between Wikis and GoogleDocs, and the feature of including multiple “editors” at any given time is certainly a useful feature GoogleDocs provides. I am a huge fan of GoogleDocs for both personal and professional uses!

  2. Karen Yarbrough

    I sort of love that you titled your post “Wiki-wiki”. It’s just fun to say, isn’t it?

    I appreciate your comment that students can be proud of something that they have created together using a wiki. Knowing that others can see their work can be a great motivator and can push them to try harder and show more care in their work. Have you seen this reaction from your students?

  3. Melissa Glenn

    Although I can’t find a good application for this in my teaching, I also liked the ability to use a wiki as a worldwide collaboration tool. One of the projects that our elementary school did when my son was in 3rd grade was to assign each classroom one country to research. Then they presented the country to the other classrooms (there were 5 in all) by having the other students visit their classroom with food and art and music and maps from that country. This helped them to experience the country without actually traveling there. I think using a classroom wiki and collaborating with a classroom from that country gives them a much more authentic experience as it is created by students in that country.
    I have to say that I enjoy reading about the K-12 teaching examples so much more than I thought I would since I have kids in the school system myself. This has also helped me understand better where my community college students are coming from as well.

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