By completing the Wiki assignment, I have learned quite a bit about what the purpose of a wiki is and how to navigate the editing and creating process. Using the wiki as a collaborative tool was a positive experience. The group work that was involved in this process is preparing us as participants for collaboration at the intern level. This collaboration will also become extremely important once we become teachers.
Also, I think it is really important for us as pre-service teachers to learn to collaborate while using technology. Since classroom technology is becoming increasingly more prevalent and essential, it is important for us to work together to troubleshoot any problems we may encounter with technology and to improve our understanding of its functions and benefits in the classroom.
WIKI IN THE CLASSROOM
Wikis can serve a number of purposes in the classroom. In a science class, wikis could be used as a representation of what the students have learned from a research project. For instance, you could have students do a web-quest and report their findings by making wiki pages about topics such as famous scientists, concepts or cycles (the water cycle, for example), or body systems. These wikis could be used at a later date for generating test material or serve as study references.
The wiki is a wonderful cooperative learning tool. My 8th grade science classroom at Suncrest Middle has a set of netbooks. A wiki activity would be a great way to take advantdage of these netbooks. Because more than one user can edit a wiki simultaneously, all of the students could potentially be working on the same wiki during each class period. It may be fun for the students to have a friendly competition between class periods to see who can create the best wiki page. Also, since students can access these at home, the students could complete wiki assignments for homework, over the holiday breaks, or even on snow days.
In my own wiki, I completed the Participant Involvement page, formatted the Participant bio pages, and worked with linking the pages together. I really liked the idea of adding the quotes from each participant and including some 'get to know the participants' information. I am also glad we decided to put a group picture on the homepage. I think it makes the wiki page a little more inviting and not so dull and wordy.