What the Students Said

I've invited my students to leave their thoughts, comments, reflections, etc., on this project in the space below. If you are a teacher who is considering using a wiki in one of your classes, please consider the feedback of these young men & women in your planning and execution.

  • I believe that this project was a good challenge. There were many skills that I learned through this project that will prove to be quite useful with the expansion of my educational career. The most difficult part of the whole project was the ability to coordinate whose turn it was to work on the page at a given and specific time. The challenges that it proposed was it forced us to work on the project at our houses. Overall, this was easily the best project that I have done in my high school career. I am now Wiki-Savvy as oppose to how I was at the beginning of this project. -Louis

  • I think that this project was the most practical project I have ever done in any high school english class. This project forces all members of the group to work as a team and to communicate. It also forces those students who are not technologically savvy to use the computer and get used to projects of the future. This wiki site is a great place to work and find information because it is for students made by students. - James

  • I also feel that this project was the most practical I've done for an english class in high school. In previous classes, the only multimedia form of presentation I have used has been PowerPoint, which has since become mundane for me. I enjoyed the creative aspect of being able to learn at the same time that I helped to inform people from outside of my school. - Elaina

Writing Your Own Wiki? Students, Take Note!

The following is a collection of suggestions from my students to you, the middle or high school students who may be constructing your own wiki for a school assignment. I have paraphrased and bullet-pointed their suggestions for easy reference.

  • Delegate specific responsibilities at the outset: Knowing exactly who is responsible for what will make assembling your wiki much easier than if you are scrambling around trying to figure it out on the fly. It also is an easy way of knowing who's not pulling their weight.
  • ASK FOR HELP: The "Help" link is a lot more helpful than you might expect as far as technical stuff goes. Also, don't be shy to ask your instructor for help if you get stuck.
  • Use the "Discussion" tab (and check it regularly!): Although you can email back and forth, the Discussion tab is a nice, centralized way for everyone to communicate. Everyone knows what's being said, and if someone is having problems and asks a question, other group members may be able to benefit from the answer. It also eliminates having to send multiple emails to group members - let it be your group's "message board."
  • Comment on each other's pages: You are each other's best resource. Use your classmates to get a fresh perspective on the page you've worked on for so long; a new pair of eyes can often catch silly mistakes we overlook when we've been working on something for too long.
  • Include LOTS of links: Linking to multiple external sources makes your page more dynamic and provides a greater sense of context for your audience.
  • DO NOT wait til the last minute!: A project like this seems big, but if you do a little bit every day or every other day, it's not nearly as bad as it seems. The revision/editing phase is so involved that you simply can't write and edit a decent page in a night, especially if you have to coordinate your efforts with other group members.