In my previous post I invited readers to visit a wiki that was created for connecting the learning of those who attended IL-TCE. If you haven't yet considered using a wiki for your classroom... think again.
Why wikis? A wiki used in a classroom setting could provide an archive of lessons, and a long-term forum, as an archivable and searchable conversation among all members of the classroom — teacher and students. Students may expand on topics as they see ﬁt, and teachers may guide the discussion where needed. It is a “many to many” technology, where knowledge is created for the beneﬁt of all.
Check out Stuart Mader’s list of wikis in education at http://www.ikiw.org/category/wiki-uses/ and Mark Wagner’s online tutorial/presentation on wikis in education presented at the fall "K12 Online Conference" at: http://k12online.wm.edu/WikiWhileYouWork.mov
Thanks to two great companies, wikis are FREE and EASY for educators!
http://pbwiki.com, where creating a wiki "is a easy as making a peanut butter sandwich" (actually making the sandwich takes longer). If you set up your page in the education” category, it will be ad-free.
If you would like to help spread the word, pbwiki provides "Presenter Packs" which includes a free t-shirt, PowerPoint files and giveaways. See details at: http://educators.pbwiki.com
Just before IL-TCE, I had a great conversation with Ramit Sethi, PBWiki co-founder, about some of the new features and enhancements just released for PBWiki. Listen to this 9-minute phone interview!
http://wikispaces.com, will provide an annual “ad free” subscription to educators at no cost (regular $60 per year) Sign up at: http://www.wikispaces.com/site/for/teachers. Adam Frey, co-founder of Wikispaces.com, presented several Spotlight sessions at IL-TCE.
I hope you will explore using wikis for your classroom. Remember, you are in control of who can add, edit or view the content. Wikis can be made public or private for your classroom. If you'd like to learn more, or have some guidance in setting up your classroom wiki, I hope to be presenting a summer workshop through ICE. Stay tuned...