Perhaps it is best to think of wikispaces as a simple, flexible web page one or more people can use to create. If you ever used wikipedia, then you know what a wikispaces page might look like. I use them a good deal with my students. My first wikispace, wikistange has grown quite complicated. This is because it is easy to embed other programs into the pages. Pictures and videos are easy to add, but you can do so much more.
I created a site where each of my grade four and fives can create their own page. I called it Chalkboard for no good reason. I created a resource page for students to visit when they are looking for something to add to their pages. It has fallen a bit behind because I just discovered a way to add a forum and chat to my page.
The greatest strength of the wikipages is that nothing is ever lost. If you make a mistake or make a change you don't like, you can go back in the history. Wikispaces updates constantly but it is an old platform now. Despite that, I still think it is one of the best for our students. I could keep talking about them I am sure. Give it a try.
I wouldn't say that Wikispaces is for younger students. We have used our school's wikispace as our school website to dispense information to parents, provide teachers with useful links, and give students a place for their favorite (educational) links. If your looking for something that younger students can collaborate on, I personally like Gaggle, which is a kid friendly blogging site.
My nine to eleven year-olds handled the wikispaces with varying degrees of success. I think theme and organization elluded about half of them. The technicalities posed no problems. I might be more systematic next year and encourage organization and purpose more. I ran an after school tech club for elementary students and grade three students started successful wikispaces.
I have tried Wikispaces with my students.You can give different tasks to your students.It can be used for giving instructions, question and answer session or ant descriptive tasks.I conducted my differentiation lesson through it. Below average students wrote their queries about the topic and high ability students answered them.
Another task given to grade seven pupils was to collect information and images about different organs of digestive system and upload them on wikispaces.
While studying about circuits children discussed about different types of circuits.
Through all these activities I was able to assess their understanding about the topic and evaluate my lesson and teaching strategies.
Pupils were able to edit each others work and do self evaluation.
Wikispaces can be used for online teaching as the teacher and the pupils can access it from any where and at any time.
Dear Alan, Thank you very much for your great help!!! I am just now learning my first steps of using computer in our school. I have never worked with wikispaces before...and today we are making a very simple one. Thank you for your resource page....it was a great help us.
So..our first steps: www.dondi.wikispaces.com
I use Wikispaces to have a discussion board about current events with my students. Students were able to discuss on a topic while working on their projects. I originally planned to do this daily, but upon reflection, I decided it was better to do this weekly as new topics emerge or more information is presented on topics (i.e. the Gulf spill).
I believe that one cannot compare wikispaces with blackboard because one is about wikis and the other is a CMS.
I have been successfully using wikis as a collaboration tool and as an easy way to create and administer a webpage.
Wikis have a great potential and it's just a matter of creating one and letting your imagination flow :)
I am using one for the first time with 4th grade reading. I can post StudyStacks for vocabulary words, videos about authors of stories we are reading. The students write sentences using new vocabulary words and post as discussions and I can correct them and send them back. I posted an incorrect summary of a story and they had to correct it. I am presently using it to organize a teacher conference in hopes of decreasing the number of meetings we will need to have.
We had a little trouble in the beginning but the next time, I would do a flip video as a tutorial and put it on the home page to help the parents and students with the directions I wanted them to follow. Once they get the hang of it, they will have no trouble.
It sounds very interesting what you are doing in your wiki. I have been working with my students on writing using a wiki and it works great.
Have you thought about creating a page per student so they can post their writings there? Well, I have done it, and it works pretty well ,and you can also try peer editing.