Tully Wagner's Page


Since this is my first exposure to Wikis, I have not yet really thought about how to use or implement them in my classroom. I do like that they are free for educators as long as you are using them for an educational purpose. I also like that we were all able to add our own pages to our classroom Wiki. This would be a great tool for collaboration in the classroom. I think that my biggest problem would be securing computer access for my students. At the school I teach at, all teachers have a school website through the district but they are cumbersome to update and are often left unattended by teachers. I think that, with what I have already gathered, Wikis could be a better alternative if I was actually going to use an online page with my students.

Global Issues
I was not too impressed with this Wiki. It just seemed like a bit maze of links. I originally clicked on it because I am a social studies teacher and it peaked my interest. However, I did not find much use for it. I had to click multiple categories to get to actual information. Then, when I did get there, the information was exactly the same as if I would have Googled it and clicked on the Wikipedia link. It took me more time and more clicks to find the same information. I think the one positive I can take from this Wiki is that it could be easily used to compare and contrast different nations and their economics, energy providers, public safety, etc.

Go West
Staying with my social studies theme, this Wiki was the second one I decided to review. While this was a Wiki for third graders, I thought it was especially well done. The content was laid out in a very logical format and there was a good mix of pictures and information on the content pages. There was an, easy to access, navigation bar on the left side of the page which made it very simple to view the content that interested you about the Oregon Trail. I could tell that the individual pages were made by kids but were edited thoroughly to make sure that the information was valuable to any reader. Great job to the teachers that took this project on with their students.

Thousands Project
The last Wiki I chose to review was the Thousands Project Wiki. This Wiki was set up by a 5th grade class to pose questions to the world. Their goal was to receive a thousand responses to each question they posed. I think that this was an effective way to try and expose students to multiple perspectives. While a lot of the responses were from people involved with their school, there were quite a few from other places also. The school was in MN and I saw responses from WA and MO. The organization of this Wiki was good because you could see all the questions posed on the home page and then click on them to view the responses. There is one question for each month. The coolest part of this Wiki, however, was the visitors map. This Wiki got visitors from IP addresses all over the world! There were many visitors from Europe, some from Africa, and even one from what must be a remote island seemingly out in the middle of the ocean near Madagascar.


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