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Chances are, you've heard of Wikipedia, the online source of information about nearly any topic you can imagine. You've probably also heard--or even told your students--don't depend on Wikipedia if you are looking for definite facts. Why? Wikipedia is likely the largest, most well-known wiki in existence. It deems itself the "free encyclopedia." And that it is. What is different about Wikipedia, and any wiki for that matter, is the nature of how a wiki comes to be and lives.

According to Wikipedia, "a wiki is a website that allows the creation and editing of any number of interlinked web pages via a web browser using a simplified markup language or a WYSIWYG text editor." Wikis are websites. Wikis are simple to create and easy to edit. Wikis allow people with a common interest or goal to work together on a common product. Wikis can have content controlled through editorial processes or they may allow any content to be posted to the wiki. A wiki, however, is not the typical viewable web page. Users can update, modify and create new information to be part of the wiki. Once you have requested permission to be part of a wiki, you are able to become a contributor to that wiki.

In this age of information, a wiki can be a marvelous tool.

Common Craft Video--What is a Wiki?

Take a look at how teachers and students are using wikis at the following sites:


Seaman Projectors in Education
While this wiki is several years old, it has many links and resources arrange by grade level to provide teachers with ideas for using technology.

Viking Voices
A work in progress by Seaman students! Using VoiceThread, students create online book reviews to share with others.

Kansas Bill Martin Jr. Award
The Kansas Reading Association provides this wiki to inform teachers of current and former nominees for the Kansas Bill Martin Jr. Picture Book Award, as well as activities to go along with the books.

Interactive NET*S
This wiki is for the ISTE National Education Technology Standards for Students. If you're looking for teaching kids technology, this can be a great resource.

Technology Keys
An extensive list of online resources developed by the Buhler school district. Seaman has based our keys project on their hard work!

Examples of Educational Wikis
Classroom Wikis


PBWorks Educator Wikis


Wikis in the Classroom
Student Created Wikis
Teacher Peer Wikis

Wiki Assignment:

Create a personal wiki page for this class by going to the Unlocking the Future main page and making a new page from there. Title it with your name. Provide an introduction of yourself, including what and where you teach and any other information you'd like to share with the class. Then explore the world of wikis in education. Thinking about what would be useful to you as an educator or your students, browse through several of the links above to find useful ways other teachers have used wikis. Select at least 2 wikis to post on your wiki page. Create a link and provide a short description for the wikis. Please choose wikis other than the ones I have already provided descriptions for!