I’m prepping for training that I’m doing this week. It’s a weeklong technology summer institute entitled Technology, Writers and Writing cosponsored by EASTCONN and the Connecticut Writing Project. Each day focuses on a different topic related to technology tools to support teaching and learning. Tuesday’s topic is entitled The Wonderful World of Wikis & Blogs: New Tools for Engaging Students in Reading and Writing.
I must confess that I got addicted to Wikis as soon as I saw how simple and powerful they are as online collaboration tools. I’ve followed other people’s blogs and fairly recently begun blogging myself. When I’m introducing teachers to the concept of blogs and wikis, I usually show them one of the Common Craft video clips. These are so simple and make it easy to understand the concept of these collaborative online tools. But it’s sometimes difficult to explain how blogs and wikis differ. The explanation I usually give is that a Blog is an online journal or “news” site that you share with the public and allow them to comment on whereas a Wiki is an online Web site that you allow members to join and participate fully in. I find Wikis to be much more flexible for educators because they provide space to post of all kinds of content like handouts, PowerPoint presentations, images, audio and video files and widgets which can be shared with students and colleagues. Blogs don’t allow that same kind of flexibility but they still provide interesting opportunities for communication and collaboration.
Below are some links to Wikis that may be of interest:
Check out the Wikispace that I’ve created for my Tech Summer Institute at: http://techsi.wikispaces.com. This is a protected Wikispace that is open to the public but I only invite teachers who come to my training sessions to join as members so that they can add their own content. I have a page with information about and links to Blog resources at: http://techsi.wikispaces.com/Blogs. I have a page with information about and links to Wiki resources at: http://techsi.wikispaces.com/Wikis.
Check out my friends’ (Donna Drasch and Rebecca Pilver) amazing Wiki for teachers and students who are interested in reading, responding to and voting on the 2010 Nutmeg Books (a Connecticut book award) at: http://nutmeg2010.sblc.wikispaces.net/
Below are some links to Blogs that may be of interest:
Check out Kathy Schrock’s blog at: http://kathyschrock.net/blog/. Kathy is a world class technology in education specialist and you can keep up with the latest in technology tools that will support teaching and learning if you follow Kathy’s blog. If you’re not familiar with Kathy, check out her Web site at: http://school.discoveryeducation.com/schrockguide/index.html.
If you’re reading this post, you’re at my blog, Teaching in the 21st Century at http://teachinginthe21stcentury.edublogs.org/. I began this blog to explore the world of blogging and to share my experience in living as an educator in the 21st Century.
Check out my friend Ginny Bitting’s blog that she uses to have her students participate in online literature circles at: http://folio.stonington.org/vbitting/about-me/