Edith Sheffer Twsia

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Presentation from Teaching With Sakai Innovation Award second place winner.

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Edith Sheffer Twsia

  1. 1. Germany & the World Wars: Creating Lives on the Wiki<br />Edith Sheffer, Andrew W. Mellon Fellow in the Humanities, Stanford University<br />
  2. 2. Overlapping themes<br />July 2009<br />2<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />
  3. 3. Open collaboration: shifting the paradigm of teaching and learning<br />The students of History 138A and TA Andrew Visser<br />TWISA Organizing Committee, Judges, and Sponsors<br />Sakai Community<br />KeliAmann, CourseWork<br />Christine Doherty, CourseWork<br />Allyson Hobbs, History<br />Alan Mikhail, History <br />Robert Moeller, History<br />Bradley Naranch, History <br />James Ward, History<br />July 2009<br />3<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />
  4. 4. This Sakai project in the Humanities suggests how… <br />July 2009<br />4<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />Even simple tools can have powerful impact<br />
  5. 5. The missing link in a survey course<br />July 2009<br />5<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />Basic course requirements<br /><ul><li> Lectures, discussion section
  6. 6. Books, Document Reader
  7. 7. Analytical paper
  8. 8. Midterm and Final</li></ul>The challenge: making history come alive<br />A platform to: <br /><ul><li> Intensify student interest
  9. 9. Deepen historical understanding
  10. 10. Stimulate excitement</li></li></ul><li>The origin of the idea: partnering with Sakai<br />July 2009<br />6<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />Consultation with CourseWork<br /><ul><li> Multiple options, </li></ul> multiple outcomes<br />Wiki Tool: Creating Lives<br />
  11. 11. Thinking through history<br />July 2009<br />7<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />“The weekly Identities assignments were somewhat like the weekly problem sets in math or science classes. In a math or physics class, it is not enough to just listen to the lecture and read the textbook; the student actually has to practice solving real problems. The Identities Project […] forced me to consider how real people actually make decisions in historical events; I felt that I was, in essence, ‘solving’ the problem of ‘how and why do ordinary people act in history’ by ‘practicing’ on my historical avatar every week.”<br />
  12. 12. Students created historical lives on Sakai<br />July 2009<br />8<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />Just 3 restrictions…<br />
  13. 13. First, the students constructed a childhood<br />July 2009<br />9<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />
  14. 14. Each week, the students posted their characters’ life choices on the wiki<br />The Fall of the Berlin Wall and reunification<br />Cold War and the Iron Curtain<br />
  15. 15. Wiki page example<br />July 2009<br />11<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />
  16. 16. Wiki page example<br />July 2009<br />12<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />
  17. 17. Wiki page example<br />July 2009<br />13<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />
  18. 18. Wiki page example<br />July 2009<br />14<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />
  19. 19. The Sakai wiki site<br />July 2009<br />Update questions posted each week<br />Students presented their characters during lecture<br />Students shared research links<br />Character wiki pages<br />
  20. 20. High community standards sustained the quality of the work and a productive exchange of ideas<br />July 2009<br />16<br />January 30, 1933<br />It’s happened. I cannot believe my eyes as I look down into the streets. They’ve done it. They’ve chosen an extremist to lead our country to God knows where. I thought Hindenburg would know better than that, but apparently he’s not thinking either. The street is bursting with people. I don’t want Eva going out there alone. Or with the children.<br />February 27, 1933<br />The Reichstag is no more. Now there is no longer even the illusion of a democracy, for even the building is gone. I don’t think it can be reversed any longer. They’re going to crack down on the communists. I don’t necessarily disagree, but I’m afraid what might happen next. What to expect? I don’t know what to think. It’s only Eva that keeps me from losing hope entirely. She’s always so optimistic. It’s silly sometimes but she makes me feel better.<br />March 23, 1933<br />Hitler can do anything he pleases now. Anything. My thoughts are in disarray. Panic.<br />May 1, 1933<br />People think it’s a holiday. They are out in the <br />
  21. 21. Sakai empowered students with a rare degree of autonomy and freedom<br />July 2009<br />17<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />Students averaged 1,121 words per post, equivalent toa 4½ page paper every week for nine weeks, including the weeks of the midterm and final paper<br />High Investment <br />Students went far beyond the required material, researching scholarly works, images, even things like period-appropriate children’s names and food specialties<br />The open platform inspired authorship, imagination, curiosity, and understanding<br />Self-motivation<br />Students said they grew attached to their avatars, pursued individual interests through them, and discussed them with friends and family<br />Identification<br />
  22. 22. Understanding – and complicating – history<br />July 2009<br />18<br />10th Sakai Conference - Boston, MA, U.S.A.<br />

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