Session 2: Create


In this session you have about two hours to develop the activity for your class.

Here are some ideas to get you started. I "borrowed" these from Wiki Walk-Through and have adapted them.

Wiki ideas appropriate for most subjects and grade levels:

  • Study guides made by student groups for themselves and peers: each group prepares the guide for one aspect of the unit or responsibility rotates: one unit guide per semester.
  • Vocabulary lists and examples of the words in use, contributed by students (ongoing throughout the year).
  • Products of research projects, especially collaborative group projects: world war battles, artistic movements, the Australian electoral process, diseases and prevention, etc. Remember that the products do not have to be simply writing. They can include computer files, images, videos, etc. Creating an organizational structure for the content is an important part if the project.
  • An annotated collection of examples from the non-school world for anything: supply/demand, capitalism, entrepreneurship, triangles, alliterations, vertebrates or invertebrates, etc. Include illustrations wherever possible.
  • What I Think Will Be on the Test wiki: a place to log review information for important concepts throughout the year, prior to taking an exam. Students add to it throughout the year and even from year to year.
  • An “everything I needed to know I learned in Ms.Teachername’s class” wiki where students add their own observations of ways the class knowledge has spilled over into the “real world.” For example, a student might write about actually using a simple algebraic equation to figure out dimensions for cutting lumber or foamcore for a display or write about ways that her friend shows tragic hubris and is heading toward a fall.
  • A travelogue from a field trip or NON-field trip that the class would have liked to take as a culmination of a unit of study: Our (non) trip to the Capital and what (we wish) we saw.
  • An FAQ (or NSFAQ- Not So Frequently Asked Questions) wiki on your current unit topic. Have students post KWL entries and continue adding questions that occur to them as the unit progresses. As other students add their “answers,” the wiki will evolve into a student-created guide to the topic. Example: World War FAQ or Biomes FAQ. You may find that the FAQ process can entirely supplant traditional classroom activities, especially if you seed a few questions as the teacher.

Wiki ideas for maths:

  • A calculus wiki for those long problems so the class can collaborate on how to solve them.
  • A geometry wiki for students to share and rewrite proofs. What a great way to see the different approaches to the same problem!
  • Applied maths wiki: students write about and illustrate places where they actually used maths to solve a problem.
  • Procedures wiki: groups explain the steps to a mathematical procedure, such as factoring a polynomial or converting a decimal to a fraction.
  • Pure numbers wiki: student illustrate numbers in as many ways possible: as graphics to count, as mathematical expressions, etc.

Wiki ideas for science:

  • A student-made glossary of scientific terms with illustrations and definitions added by the class (using original digital photos or those from other online Creative Commons sources, such as Flickr). Linking to separate pages with detailed information would allow the main glossary list to remain reasonably short.
  • A taxonomy of living things with information about each branch as you study Biology over a full year.
  • Designs of experiments (and resulting lab reports) for a chemistry class.
  • Detailed and illustrated descriptions of scientific processes: how mountains form, etc.
  • A physics wiki for those long problems so the class can collaborate on how to solve them.

Wiki ideas for HSIE and/or RE:

  • A collection of propaganda examples during a propaganda unit.
  • Detailed and illustrated descriptions of governmental processes: how a bill becomes a law, etc.
  • A “fan club” for your favorite historical figure or prophet.
  • A virtual tour of your school as you study “our community”.
  • A local history wiki, documenting historical buildings, events, and people within your community. Include interviews with those who can tell about events from the World War II era or the day the mill burned down, etc. Allow adult community members to add their input by signing up for “membership” in the wiki. This project could continue on for years and actually be a service to the community.
  • A document-the-veterans wiki for those in your community who served in the military. Interview them and photograph them, including both their accounts and your students’ documentation and personal reflections on the interviews.
  • A travel brochure wiki: use wikis to “advertise” for different literary, historical, or cultural locations and time periods: Dickens’ London, fourteenth century in Italy in Verona and Mantua ( Romeo and Juliet), Gallipoli / The Western Front, Gallilee at the time of Jesus, etc.

Here are some things you can get your students to add to a wiki as part of a task:

Google Map. Get students to find places relevant to a unit of work or a person's life etc., and plot the places on a Google Map. Images, information and links can be added to each The map can then be inserted in a wiki page. This could be a collaborative project.

Time Line. Use a site such as Timerime. Get the students to create a timeline of events relating to a topic or a person's life. Information and images can be added to each event. The timeline can then be inserted in a wiki page. This could be a collaborative project.

Add a website to a page. If you want students to access information, ideas, images, etc., from a specific source, you can add the whole website to a page. You can then have your questions and instructions on the same page as the website.

Add a video from YouTube or TeacherTube to a wiki page. You can then have the questions or instructions on the page as the students watch the video.

Create a glog at Glogster and upload it to a page.