Unit 3 Implementing Wikis/ Blogs in Social Studies classroom
- Welcome to the last unit of this mini course.
- In the previous units, you were able to define Web 2.0 tools and understand the key characteristics of Web 2.0 tools.You also explored the benefits and obstacles of using Web 2.0 tools in social studies context.
- In this unit, you will learn the techniques of integrating Wikis and Blogs into social studies instruction.
- At the end of this unit, you are encouraged to reflect on what you have learned from this mini course, and put into real school practice of integrating Wikis and Blogs into social studies instruction.
- Is is a big challenge for you? Let's start our journey!
- Participate will define what is Wikis and what is Blog.
- Participant will identify the reasons that teachers incorporate Wikis and Blogs into social studies classrooms.
- Participates will examine authentic examples of integrating Wikis in Social studies instruction.
- Participants will discuss examples of integrating blogs into Social Studies Instruction.
What is Wiki ?
- Wikis are web site that allow users to create or edit content collaboratively without any required technical tools.
- The Word "wiki" comes from Hawaiian language,meaning "quick".
- This reflects the ability of wikis to generate quick, collaborative results, with potentially an unlimited amount of input from content creators all aimed towards the same goal.
- Wikis come in many forms, and can be created by anyone and used in a variety of ways. The common factor is they allow democratic,user-vetted crowd-sourced, user-vetted contributions.
- One famous example is Wikipedia. It is a free and open online encyclopedia created by millions of people who are registered on the site.
- Wikis fall under the Web 2.0 characteristics of "harnessing the collective intelligence".(Wilson, Wright, Inman, & Matheson, 2011,p.68).
- In short, wikis brings people together into one place with the opportunity to create ,edit and share information.
- By giving students' opportunity to participate in class Wikis page , they are engaging in collaborative learning and problem solving activities.
- Students not only just consume information,but also generate information.
- Students become learning agents instead of audience, this reversal of roles ultimately help students master the concepts and historical events of social studies.
The 3 Top Wiki Sites for teacher
- Wikispaces: https://www.wikispaces.com/
- PBworks: http://www.pbworks.com/
- Wikidot: http://www.wikidot.com/
- Check out this short video by Jamie Douboise for a short overview of what a wiki is and How does a wiki work.
- Ask yourself a question : Is there any differences between Wikis and Blogs? You will definitely find the answer form the following video.
- You will also learn to create a new wiki page on Wikispaces by simply following several steps. Click here 
Wikis Worth a look
- It is a time for you to examine a real examples of using wikis in social studies classroom.
- Wikis: Armstrong U.S. History Wiki, click here:
- School: Del Mar Middle School, Tiburon ,CA
- Description: An 8th grade U.S. History class wiki designed around students investigating history.
- It is retrieved from : https://educationalwikis.wikispaces.com/Examples+of+educational+wikis
- After reviewing the above example, discuss the following questions:
- Does the teachers set clear expectations or guidelines for students to use wikis?
- What kinds of assignments does teacher create that foster students' higher order critical thinking skills?
What is blog?
- Blogs are essentially websites, but they tend to exist in groups as a cloud of communication between different bloggers,or individuals who create posts.
- Bloggers create posts that express their ideas,share hyper links,upload photos and videos, or share whatever else they like.
- Many bloggers create personal commentaries like a diary or online journal; others comment or contribute to ongoing discussion.
- Bloggs have become a popular from civic interaction, and it makes sense to bring this technology to students in school.
Why teachers should use blogs in the Social studies classroom?
- Blogs fall under a Web 2.0 characteristics "harnessing collective intelligence."(O'Reilly,2005)
- A Blog can serve an educational tool in a variety of ways.
- Blog may be used in the social studies classroom to archive historical documents, for daily discussion about national or local events related to political economic issues, for podcasts and podcasts, and for students' weekly assignments.
- One of the good features of blogs is that they are user-friendly and cost free.
The Top 3 Blog sites for teachers
- Edublogs: https://edublogs.org/
Watch the video: Blogger in the classroom.
You will learn to create a new blog follow several steps. Click here:
Blogs Worth a look
- The content of this blog is "A history from the beginning World War I to the Cold War."
- It is retrieved from: http://www.techforteachers.net/wikis-in-the-classroom.html
- You have a opportunity to examine a real example of using blogs in the social studies classroom.
After reviewing the above example, please answer the following questions:
- What is the feaure of this blog?
- How can student participant in the blog discussion?
- Since there are a blog and a wiki under the same title" A history from the beginner World War I to the Cold War," do they have different function?
- Is there any differences between these two?
- Social studies has changed drastically in recent years. Blogs and Wikis are at forefront of Web 2.0.
- These tools allow collaboration and feedback in communication on the web.The relationship between teachers and students will change, with teachers facilitate learning.
- Above examples show that wikis and blogs have a positive influences in student's collaborative learning and problem-solving learning.
- For acquiring high-order thinking skills through the utilization of Web 2.0 applications,wikis and blogs are an excellent option.