Using Wikis to Enhance Group Learning in School Classrooms

 

This illustrates how we tailored a social media course to the education sector and successfully applied it to a particular challenge within a secondary school.

Background

St Andrews is a Catholic secondary school in Surrey. The Science Subject Leader was keen to raise the profile of independent research being valued as home learning, so she worked closely with TWKS to design a relevant course. The resulting online project was developed as a cross-curricular project between Science and Technology.


St Andrew’s had 3 desired outcomes

  1. For each student to make a positive contribution to the website.
  2. To develop the teamwork amongst students.
  3. To produce a useful product that subsequent year 7 students could make further contributions to.

We decided to use wikis as they are a good tool for collaborative work, to show the growth of a website and for the students and teachers to see the impact. Also wikis allow students to share their research with each other showing progress rather than repeating research on each topic. In using the Internet students were to later transfer this skill to the school’s Virtual Learning Environment Frontier.


Results

  1. Seventy five students contributed to the shared website in the space of 3 hours.
  2. The students worked within new groups tapping into their individual skills.
  3. A product evolved on the day and has provided the basis for further development.

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