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Wonders of Wikis

I have become more impressed with the ease of use of wikis to quickly create and publish content online. I use PBwiki to collect and share links and resources for the workshops we host. It saves me a lot time and cuts down on the paper that eventually winds up damaged or discarded…it’s always online for participants to use! Besides, it’s a great way for me to introduce participants to what a wiki is and how easy it is to put info online. I’m going to incorporate wikis into our Creating WebQuests online class this spring…we had been using QuestGarden, but it gave the last bunch of folks some trouble. (Although I see now that they’ve just upgraded the site, I’ll have to explore that later.)

Those uses, however, aren’t particularly collaborative…something that wikis are particularly great at. Ben, from The Tech Savvy Educator, came up with a good use for wikis…a Word Wall. And these two wikis, Flat Classroom Project and the Peru Conference Wiki highlight how wikis can be used to connect and share with students around the world. Want to see another? How about this fifth grade book study of Turn Homeward, Hannalee. If these projects seem a little overwhelming just think of a wiki as A Glorified Whiteboard.

If you’re interested in exploring your own wiki, visit PBwiki’s For Education page to learn more and start creating.

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2 Responses

  1. Hmmm….what kind of problems did your students have with QuestGarden? I get very few reports of technical glitches with a hundred or so people online each day. Let me know so I can fix it.
    ::: Bernie :::

  2. I think their biggest trouble was from pasting content from other sources…they had a hard time getting the formatting to work out. For whatever reason, the formatting tools weren’t applying changes. I went into a couple of them and editing tags out of the code because they were getting a little frustrated.

    I required that everyone create a rubric on Rubistar and paste (basically an html table) that in on the Evaluation page. That worked OK for some, but others had some of the same types of formatting issues…mostly with the table widths. The template was too narrow to hold the table without it spilling into the background. There may be a better way to place the table in there, I’ll have to explore that a bit.

    Thanks for your help!

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