Thursday, December 30, 2010

What is a "wiki?"

  You may have heard the term "wiki" before as in Wikipedia.  While Wikipedia is one of the most popular wikis, there are many others.  Basically, a wiki is a website that people can edit.  Depending on the wiki, only certain people may be given access to edit the information on the page.  Wikis exist for all types of purposes, from professional to personal.  There is a bit of disagreement as to the credibility of wikis since the general public can edit them, as opposed to works published solely by educated professionals.  Still, many professionals (including teachers) use wikis.
     Teachers may use wikis with students as part of an assignment or routine, with students commenting on the content of the lesson, sharing thoughts as part of a discussion or response to a question and more.  A teacher may also refer to wikis in planning lessons/units.  Some school systems make a variety of resources available in the form of a wiki.  In this way teachers can add and revise information as changes occur within their school system.  I know many people, teachers and otherwise, who use Wikipedia to find and check information. 

Below you will find two links.  The first is a link to Wikipedia (more specifically, the definition of "wiki").  The second link is to an example of a wiki used by a school system to aide teachers in planning and instruction.

Wikipedia's Definition of Wiki

Clark County School District Teacher Wiki 

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Coming Soon...

  Now that I have located my password to this account and connected my new computer, I am about to finally get going with this project.  I have been bouncing ideas around in my head on how to use different Web 2.0 tools with different grade levels, also considering the critical information literacy project and the Participate/Plan a Project assignment.  I'll share my current thoughts below, however basic:

Participate Project- 1st grade- Find a good project, hopefully based on content, on site such as ePals.

Plan-a-Project- 4th grade- Connect to a 4th grade classroom teacher (M. Gerretson), co-planning a project related to Howard County 4th grade content objectives. (I know I only need to do one project, but this is what I do now so...).

Critical Info. Literacy- 3rd grade- Share positive examples and negative examples of websites, model proper/improper use (in research) and discuss.  I am open to creating quick websites that could be used in assignment.  Still thinking this one through.  

Web 2.0:
1.  Google Docs- I plan to create a Google document that I could use to get to know students at the beginning of the year.  Questions could focus on favorite tech uses, previous experience in class, and more.
2. Wiki- One of my schools uses a wiki to ask for and receive help with technical issues.  I will post a screen shot later, with names hidden.
3. Podcasting- I am currently planning a lesson for third graders, currently thinking mostly about how to record (so others aren't in background sound).
4. Blog- I am currently planning a lesson for fifth graders, trying to decide the best service to use.
5.  Maybe?