What is a wiki?Wikiwiki means quick in Hawaiian. A wiki is a website in which users can easily edit any page. The website grows organically by linking existing pages together or by creating links to new pages.
Wait…is this like Wikipedia? Yes, wikipedia is a wiki page. Basically, anyone with access to the wiki page can add, edit and delete content.
But…that means anyone can typeanything on the page! Why in the world would I want to use something like that? A wiki is a powerful tool that when utilized correctly can be used for collaboration projects.
Hmm…could you show me anexample of this? Sure. Click on the http://www.commonc video to see how raft.com/video-wikis- wikis can be a plain-english useful, collaboration tool.
Okay…tell me more about wikis? How do they work? Well, basically you set up a wiki page and assign members to join the group. “Teachers can assign one to an entire classroom or to small groups. Many wiki creation programs and websites have educational or classroom features that allow teachers to assign user names and passwords to their students without their students having to create accounts, give email addresses, or provide other personal information.”- from:http://curriculalessons.suite101.com/article.cfm/using_wikis _in_the_classroom
How do I create a wiki? There are various websites and software programs that allow for the creation of wikis. Many website creation software such as Sharepoint, include a wiki creation feature.
Okay, but I am not a techie. Isthere a simple way to create awiki? Yes! If you go to the following website: http://www.wikispaces.com/ , you can set up an account and then a wiki page template will be created. Then you can just start creating your page.
All about Wikispaces.com This site is great because if you are a K-12 educator, you can set up a wiki account for free with no limitations! Click on the link to learn more. http://www.wikispace s.com/site/for/teache rs
Okay, let’s say I decide to usewikispaces to create a wiki. Whatdo I do first? First, you must create an account. When you do this you will be asked to come up with a username, password, and you will have to decide what settings you want for your wiki.
Settings? What does that mean? Basically, the settings detail how you want the wiki to be used: Will it be a private wiki?(members only) Will it be open to the public(meaning anyone can read it), if it is open to the public can anyone add, edit content to the page, etc?
Ok, so I created a wiki accountand picked my settings. Nowwhat? Every wiki website has two important buttons: the edit button and save button. First, you click on the edit button. This will turn the wiki page into a document where you can type, edit, and add pictures and files to your page.
How do I add text, pictures orfiles? When you click on the edit button, you get an interface that is similar to a word processing document. While all wiki creation websites and software programs are different, their interfaces are fairly simple. This is one picture of one wiki interface. You can see it is just a blank page with a simple tool bar.
Okay…I’ve added content to mywiki page. Now what? Well, now all you do is click on save. Your work is saved and ready for the next person to add content.
How do I get my students toaccess my wiki so they can addcontent? Simply send them the url(web address) of the wiki in an e-mail. Then, depending on what settings you picked, they can start editing content. If you set up the wiki as private(members only), you must provide the students with the login information they will need to access the page.
What are some examples of wikis thatother teachers have created? When you create a wiki, you must remember that the essential purpose of such a page is to support collaboration. It is not meant to be a website that is changed occasionally. It should be a website that is accessed frequently and updated frequently.
Examples: Group projects: Group projects can be a hassle when it comes to dividing up the work load and checking up on each other’s progress. If the group sets up a wiki, the members can list all the requirements of the project and then everyone who accesses the wiki can have input as to what they are assigned. Example: Here’s what the assignment requires. Person #1: Would it be okay, if I do the rubric and opening explanation?
Group projects continued… Once the assignments are divided up, the group members will work on their assigned parts. Once they are done their part, they will then upload their part to the wiki so that everyone can see the content, and provide feedback. This assures that everyone has the same information and that the final project is something that the whole group has agreed to.
Brainstorming For projects like Example: “A wiki could be set up for middle or high science fair school students to brainstorm ideas for and projects, a wiki plan science fair projects. Initially it would mostly be brainstorming, posting ideas and page can be used information to back them up. As they begin to to help streamline flesh out the ideas that they are interested in, small groups might form to work on individual the brainstorming projects, but could still contribute ideas to process. other projects. The teacher can act as a facilitator by offering suggestions and asking probing questions to get students to consider particular aspects in the planning of their projects. The wiki could also be used to record and organize data, and plan eventual papers/presentations. “ -from http://wik.ed.uiuc.edu/index.php/Wiki_in_a_K- 12_classroom
Portfolio and sharing of finishedproject A wiki page can be set up for individual projects, as well. Let’s say each student has the same project. Instead of having each student submit their project individually(saving on a network drive, or sending it in an e- mail), the students can upload their work to a wiki page.
Portfolio and sharing of finishedprojects continued… So, by everyone posting their work on the same site, everyone’s work can be shared and is easily accessible. Students can then see what other people have done and provide feedback on their work.
Where can I find information tohelp me create a wiki? Excellent question! Here are some great resources you can use to learn more about wiki and education: http://www.teachersfir st.com/content/wiki/ http://educationalwikis .wikispaces.com/Articl es+and+Resources