I love having a wiki page for my classroom. It was so easy to set up. All I had to do was find a free wiki host, and et voila, I had my own wiki! I thought that it was going to be much more complicated because a colleague was trying to explain how my SQL wiki worked, but the site was very helpful and user friendly.
You see, I am a middle school history teacher, so my wiki page was designed to help students learn about American history interactively. Here is what makes my wiki great for activities in the classroom!
1. Lets kids work from home easier.
I remember hating having to bring 50 pounds of homework home with me each and every night just so I could reference one or two pages in each text book. With my wiki page, all the documents that they need are there, which means that they have less to take home. This also means that they have no excuse to lose things either! Plus, it makes finding the correct information easier for them as well, resulting in less frustration and a more positive learning experience.
2. Makes group projects easier.
Having kids post their ideas in the wiki and work together allows students to build off of each other, which is the goal of a group project. Rather than having them bicker and squabble over who does what, using the wiki allows the students to more easily take care of the individual project requirements, and make a more cohesive project. It also teaches team working skills, which will be important later on in their lives.
3. Provides a better way to grade student participation.
Some kids are just shy in the classroom, and feel uncomfortable answering questions or generally participating. Other kids might not pay attention, which is why they might not participate. It can be hard to tell who falls into which category sometimes, but online, you can clearly see the amount of effort that a student puts in. Plus, I have found that using a computer helps the more shy students to participate, since it alleviates some social anxieties they might have. And we all know that participation helps students to learn.
That, ladies and gentlemen, is why I loved using my wiki to help my students learn. There are so many easy ways to set up a page like my wiki. If you have any questions about my wiki, feel free to ask. What are some of other uses for wiki that I might be able to take from you guys and implement in my wiki? Please share in the comments!