I teach a class called "Integrating Technology into the K-12 Classroom" at The University of Tennessee. We are currently exploring wikis in the classroom. If you are willing I would love to be able to share your "success story" with my students.
Thanks! Your help is appreciated. It always helps to share "real world" examples.
Hi Jeff, I have no success story to share but just some experiences introducing wiki for the first time for my students. It took a while for them to figure out how wiki works and how they would collaborate through wiki. My overall experience was quite disappointing but I think I learned a few things:
In the end, I end up "building the wiki", rather than the other way around. You can have a look at my wiki courses:
May I take this opportunity also to invite you to visit my blog:
Just stopped by and learned something new!!
Thanks and have a great week!!
This is my second year using wikis with 7th graders. It's been a huge learning experience for all of us...but that's what makes teaching so much fun for me. I'm using the wiki to foster collaboration and learning for 7th grade Medieval World History students. The benefits include cross-class collaboration (I teach six periods of World History). I've assigned several different assignments in which all 200+ students are participating at the same time. The kids like being able to see their work online and I know they enjoy "working" with their classmates who aren't necessarily in the same period. I also participate in the wiki discussions which helps to expand my class time with my students beyond the 45 minute period. I love to see my students actively editing their own posts (with no direction from me). The public nature of the wiki makes the students a bit more self-conscious about grammar and spelling. I've seen students make as many as five edits on one post. =) Another benefit to the wiki is the discussion board. My students post questions and wait for someone to help them. This feature actually evolved when I was out of town for a long weekend and didn't have Internet access. When I came back Sunday evening, I saw a huge amount of discussion posts from students helping each other. It was relief to know that they were problem-solving on their own.
The cons? Trying to keep up with the grading because some students like to respond to everyone who posts. I use the history tab section and work backwards so that I can see who posted what and when. Perhaps the biggest frustration is the fact that only one student can edit a page at a time. To alleviate over-writing each other's posts, I direct my students to first type their post into a Word document before cutting and pasting...that way if it gets deleted or partially over-written, they can simply cut and paste their original post again.
My students really enjoy the wiki. Even the ones from last year ask me if I'm still using it and if they can post on it as well. I work at a Title I school, so I make sure that I don't require a wiki post without enough time for students to find a computer with Internet access. However, quite a few of my students have a data plan with their cell phone, so they post on the wiki using their cell.
I haven't had any parental issues. However, on my classroom website on the parent page, I introduce the wiki, upload the link, and encourage parents to "check in" on the wiki (no one has taken me up on that offer).
I absolutely love how using the wiki has increased engagement and motivation for my students. Because I allow for homework to be posted on the wiki, I tend to get homework from students who traditionally don't want to put their work to paper, but will willingly do it because it involves a computer.
If you'd like to see our class wiki, let me know. I keep it private because of the age level of my students. And if you need any more "real world" examples, I'm more than happy to share. I just finished a case-study on wikis and historical analysis skills...it's not conclusive, but pretty darn promising. =)
Thank you so much for sharing this! I would love to see the wiki! I understand the privacy issue, but do you think it would be okay to share in class with my teacher ed students? Just on the big screen so they can see it, not allow access.
Any other "real world" examples would be fantastic!
Here is my email address...email@example.com...if you will send me the link I will "request access" to the wiki.
My name is Ken and I teach 7th grade Life Science at Susquehanna Township Middle School in Harrisburg PA. I am new to the wiki world (https://mredwardslifesciencewiki.wikispaces.com/) and I am very excited to incorporate wikis into my science class. Would you be willing to share your share your wiki sith me so that I can see "some real world examples" and pick up some new ides for my self.
Thank you for your help.