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Sunday, December 18, 2005

Westwood Named Wikispace of the Month!



I'm excited about my school wikispace being named wikispace of the month. Here is the blurb from their e-mail. They will be posting the article to their website this week. The students are also thrilled.

Excerpt from Wikispace monthly e-mail:

3. Space of the Month: Westwood
------------------------------ -

Westwood is the Wikispaces Space of the Month for December 2005.


http://westwood.wikispaces.com

Our Space: We began to use our wikispace as the companion to our
Computer Science curriculum but are expanding it for use in Computer
Fundamentals, Keyboarding, and Computer Graphic Design.

We started with one page (http://westwood.wikispaces.com/Web+2.0)
where I posted words relating to Web 2.0. I divided the students into
groups and had them collaboratively research their topic on the
Internet, summarize their findings, and link to their sources. I have
found that it is the perfect tool to help students summarize and
synthesize information! Every student, regardless of ability level
was able to contribute in a meaningful way! We've expanded it considerably and now have links to our student
wikispaces (http://westwood.wikispaces.com/Westwood+wikilinks+page).
Of particular interest is the 10th grade "study hall"
(http://studyhall.wikispaces.com) where the students have created a
listing of homework with links to the pages they have created to
study for exams! They update this on their own! It has its own life!
I'm most excited that they have an electronic forum to exchange
academic information from home! I like that I can monitor who has
added material and can control who contributes to each space.

Our Community: The students and faculty of Westwood Schools.

Our Experience with Wikispaces: The first day, the students started
getting excited. The second day, they were thrilled and engrossed in
learning about our topic. For their quiz on creating wikipages I had
them create their own space on the school topic of their choice. That
is when I found them squealing in the hall talking about their english
wikispace or history wikispace. The other faculty, who are always
cutting edge, began asking what this "wiki thing" was. Some of them
have created their own pages and are creating projects next semester
to move from paper portfolios to wikispaces. I\'ve been asked to do a
teacher in service training on January 2nd to bring all middle school
and high school teachers up to speed.

I have used countless technological tools -- but I have never found a
tool so useful in the educational process. We use blogging, podcasting
and all of the other features of Education 2.0. I believe, however,
that wikispaces is the thing that will integrate all of these technologies into meaningful experiences.

Read more about about which features work well for us:

http://www.wikispaces.com/Wikispaces+Update+December+2005+More+Westwood

Read a full summary of our Wikispaces experience:

http://coolcatteacher.blogspot.com/2005/12/wiki-wiki-teaching-art-of-using-wiki.html
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