This really is working well, it’s funny how I’ve used this before and yet this time it has really taken off. There are literally hundreds of posts all generated by the students and they decided to add a page where they could upload their own writing to share and get feedback on. Obviously at this point I am pinching myself repeatedly.
As noted earlier the quality of the posts is high and students are being responsible and sensitive to the needs of others in their posts. I can see their learning and can see how they have inspired each other to learn more deeply. The wider reading page is a great success as they share their favourite books with each other and recommend lists of authors.
I have begun a new wiki with my new year 9 class. They have embraced it more quickly than other classes and have posted their responses to the text we are reading. These reponses were quite detailed and I am pleased with their progress. I will be posting homework tasks on this site for them.
I added vokis to each page and this has been recieved well. These vokis give a brief overview of the tasks for each page.
One student has already created his own voki. I am very pleased with the way that this class have embraced the technology. They also have a Smartboard in the classroom and love using it. They often stay back to use the board after class.
Now that I am settling in to the new school it’s time to take stock and update all of my online presences. In the process of doing this I thought it was a good idea to see if I could do things any better. After all there are new sites all of the time. I have run a ning ( or several) wikis, blogs, twitter, had a look at a microblogging site, Edmodo and all sorts of other goodies.
The first step is obviously to sit down and consider what I want to use it for, and then once I have that worked out, I need to think about whether anything that I am currently using is good for that use. Sounds pretty simple huh?
All that has happened so far is that I have got a headache! There really is so much out there. I am now going back to the drawing board. So many people are doing so many great things so I will do more research and for the meantime stick with the wiki, ning and blog. I’d really like a blog that allows me to have several pages on which I can post, say one for each year level I teach and one for me and other teachers. Is that too much to ask?
The Interactive Whiteboard Wiki has been set up as a spin off from the PEEL project which has been successfully running in lots of schools for several years now. The purpose of this network is for educators to share ideas about best practice and to discuss and share ways that they have been using the software and the boards. There is a focus on PEEL (project for enhancing effective learning) and considering ways to get teachers involved in using Smartboards effectively in classrooms.
This is the second year that I have run a wiki for my VCE students to give them some assistance and a forum outside of school hours. I’m working on the butterfly wing theory as last year only a few diehard scholars actually used it. But, well, it’s too early to give up. I originally had a wikispaces wiki, but seemed to have a couple of glitches (as in everything suddenly disappeared one day and all of my pages were blank!) So this year a friend had recommended pbwiki (as easy as making a peanut butter sandwich don’t you know) so I thought,hmm, peanut butter – I’ll give it a whirl.
It looks very different from the wikispaces one and navigates slightly differently but does live up to the claim that it’s easy to set up. I have absolutely no knowledge of html or anything like that and only like to use technology as a tool, not for the sake of it, and it was simple to set up a wiki that looks visually appealing. It lacks some of the more intuitive features that I’d gotten used to in wikispaces, such as the ability to move images around easily but that could just be because I’m not yet fully conversant in its ways. I’ll test it out over this year and then assess it depending on how easy it is and how much the students find it easy to navigate.
The url is http://pbwiki.englishguru.com feel free to peruse and critique.