Students in my fourth and fifth grade Integrated Technology classes now have their own secure wiki webpage at wikispaces! Students have a secure place to learn and share. For now, members only in this cyberspace - only our teachers, students and their parents may enter. We monitor the site daily and I am already finding that students writing in their spaces at home too!. Students are incorporating safety and etiquette rules that they have learned to create the first pages. Soon each 4th and 5th grade student will have a mystery partner in our school to practice new technology skills and build communication skills. The next step is collaborating with the "outside world" .

Our first Technology/Social Studies project is on Native Americans. Students and teachers are working together to prepare for a project with 4th grade students in other states. This collaborative project will also help our students build character education and communication skills in Language Arts in our new world of ever changing technology.

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Comment by jdkbell on September 30, 2007 at 7:17pm
Do you have a copy of the guidelines that you used to teach your students proper usage of the wiki? We are doing this in four, fifth grade classrooms at my school as well. We went through proper etiquette, but then we had students who were using fake names and changing other students' pages. Any ideas?
Comment by JoNelle on October 2, 2007 at 5:33pm
We are taking baby steps. We are trying to make sure that all understand that wikispaces stamps each entry with the username, date and time. I have been telling my students that "I did not know/understand" will not be an excuse. It WILL mean that they are not ready to have a page and that they will watch others in action instead of participate- no warnings. Right now we seem to spend more time talking about examples of safety and manners than actually typing entries. I am prepared to "nip it in the bud" if/when something happens. News tends to spread of being banned from computer use.
We used many of the great ideas as pre-wiki activities from http://room18tis.wikispaces.com/
The TeachersFirst site
http://www.teachersfirst.com/content/wiki/issues.cfm
has an extensive student warrenty. Some teachers feel that the wording is too severe for elementary and others think it is needed to communicate to others what we will/will not tolerate. I'm looking at the language to show all the extent that we value the safety of our students and what we feel is appropriate.

I feel sure we will have to deal with what you are very soon. We have six classes each of 4th and 5th graders. I walk around the whole time reading, commenting, and having students share what they have entered. I also check it later for recent changes. It seems to let them know that their spaces really are being read and monitored - at least I hope so:).

Our students have had experience of sharing space on our student drive. We have a student drive with classroom folders - classroom folders have student folders. They can get into them - and for the most part they respect it. We have had exceptions and they are banned from computer use for a period of time. I talk to them about their wikispace is the same as the folders. You can access them, but you should not since it is not yours. Just like you do not go into other students' desks. It is not your property and the same rules/consequences apply.
Ok- sorry I tend to go on too long...
Right now I need to remember where to find out how to turn off the student email in wikispaces.
Comment by JoNelle on October 14, 2007 at 6:49pm
As far as I can tell, you cannot turn off email in wikispaces.
Comment by Connie Mitchum on November 16, 2007 at 8:24am
I am really interested in wikispaces for my 7th and 8th English. I am pretty clueless on how to use them am going to check out your links.

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