wikis unwrapped

I’ve mentioned wikis as a possible platform for your classroom. I’ve used wikis before, particularly PBwiki, but not in the way they are intended. Wikis are meant to be interactive, meaning that a group of people collaborate to produce and edit information.

When I was using a wiki, it was difficult to set up controls about how information could be edited. I needed my information to be static, or at least edited only by me. Now, wikis are much improved so that page-editing controls are manageable. Pages can be set up that can only be edited by me, the teacher, and other pages may be set up for groups of students to manage, each group with its own editing authority.

Unless you see a wiki in action, it’s difficult to understand the process. CommonCraft has an excellent tutorial video that makes wiki-use immediately intuitive. Once you watch this presentation, you’ll get it, and what’s more, you’ll want to get it: a wiki, that is. Watch and learn.

The three wikis mentioned in the video are PBwiki, Wetpaint, and Wikispaces.

Would I still use a wiki today, considering that they are better than ever for education purposes? Probably not. But only because I see much of that same wiki functionality in Google docs (collaboration, revision tracking), and I’m trying for simplicity’s sake to keep everything as close together–in one place–as possible.

Whether or not you decide to integrate a wiki into your classroom planning, watch the video. Commoncraft is uncommonly good at rendering unfamiliar concepts easily understood. Presentation technique is the real lesson to be learned today.

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1 Comment

  1. April 8, 2008 at 2:44 am

    Hey, I’m posting your link to Rob’s Megaphone.


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