Aug 08

Many teachers have shown an interest in using the power of wiki in the classroom. But the learning curve in using wikis can be a little steep. I like to have video tutorials when I am learning new software. I like being able to go through the steps at your own space you’d like to view some video tutorials on how to use a wiki these may be of use.

WikispacesIf you are using a free Wikispace for educators there are some how-to videos here for perusal at your leisure here. This video takes you through the Wikispaces “history” function.

PBWiki have some free wikis for education too. These PBWiki video tutorials at Atomic Learning wikiPBwhich are free until Sept 30th and should be very useful in helping you and your students develop skills and understanding of the use of Wikis in education.

When talking about wiki I always like to refer colleagues to the Terry The Tennisball Wiki by students of Grade 3-4 in Geelong run by John Pearce. To my mind many wiki are in essence like a mini Choose Your Own Adventure story. The CYOB format for storytelling is an engaging writing and reading literacy tool at teachers disposal. Students with iPods may be interested in downloading a free version of a story called ‘The Abominable Snowman’ from this website. InstikiAt my last school I set up an Instiki Wiki and it really helped engage students in a collaborative writing project for a Year 4 English class. As a read/write ‘web’ and functional literacy experience the students built a wiki around their hobbies and tried to add to each others writing - we developed a diverse range of expertise and communication of opinions. To set the wiki up I hosted it on my iBook NB4T which meant the wiki was portable.
Other ways we can use wikis in our teaching?:

1. A list of articles and resources that describe how to use wikis in education
2. A comprehensive list of existing educational wikis that we can learn from

Some other wiki services:
* WetPaint - http://www.wetpaint.com/
* Stikipad - http://stikipad.com/
* OttoWiki - http://www.ottowiki.com/

If you are interested in a first had account from a teacher using a wiki in the classroom you try this podcast from Vicki Davis. “She is known for her award winning class wiki, wiki-centric classroom structure, and use of broad scope of Web 2.0 tools to improve student performance.” The podcast (audio recording) link is add the bottom this page.

   , ,

May 15

bloglogo.jpgThis conference may be of interest to those of us who have ventured into Second Life. Looking forward to the ECAWA inworld event this Friday thanks to Yvonne Harrison.

The Second Life Best Practices in Education International Conference will be held on May 25, 2007 in venues all over the Second Life world, with exciting presentations, vendors and exhibitors, and everything an educator needs to know to get started exploring the possibilities for teaching, learning, and research in Second Life.

OrganisersThe event has quite a few sponsors which may or may not be a legitimisation of the events worth. I’m yet to be totally convinced about the merits of Second Life as an educational tool. Perhaps that’s because I personally feel handicapped as a slow typer when I want to communicate. Asynchronous audio would be so much easier. I’ve tried to download SecondTalk to allow use of Skype inworld but haven’t been able to locate the required headset object for my inventory. Anyone got a better idea?

   , ,

May 04

This video called “Pay Attention” puts into perspective some of the current forces circulating around the industrial age institution we call education. I find the music and context a little grim but the message is worth considering. It was created by Darren Draper in an effort to motivate teachers to more effectively use technology in their teaching. From the TeacherTube notes Darren says:

Since most of today’s students can appropriately be labeled as “Digital Learners”, why do so many teachers refuse to enter the digital age with their teaching practices?

This presentation was created in an effort to motivate teachers to more effectively use technology in their teaching.

  

Mar 14

A bit of discussion has been going on around the traps about Internet based file conversion apps. Zamzar-LogoZamzar and Media Convert allow you to convert files up to 100mb and 150mb respectively. To convert files one simply uploads a file from their hard drive or from a URL. There seems to be more of these tools coming online all the time. My concern is, if teachers are going to use them in the classroom where are these files being stored before and after conversion? With Terms of Service on the Media Convert site that contain grammatical flaws such as……

Lezard “Your are the only responsible for the data which it sends to Media-Convert servers. One is reminded that the illicit exchanges of recordings and protected works as well as the hacking harm artistic creation………Media-Convert is a free service, which does not offer any guarantee of any kind as for its use. You can use Media-Convert for any activity, personal or profesionnal. “

…. one doesn’t gain confidence in the service providers. So for me the jury is out on whether the usefulness of these tools is for you or for the convertor.

Has anyone used them with success?

   , ,

Close
E-mail It