Last week we went over Google Apps and docs that will be staples in our class everyday. This week we will be setting up our classroom wikispace. The wikispace will incorporate many types of media and become our hub for resource sharing, hosting, and collaborative projects.
Yesterday we set up our wikispace and went over the criteria for using and navigating a wikispace effectively. Today, students will be adding their blogger accounts to the wikispace.
Students will be able to set up a blog via blogger.com
Students will be able to edit a wikispace
Students will be able to add an external link to a wikispace.
The best way to begin this lesson is to model it for your students while their laptop screens are down and they are watching. You may want to place screen shots into a PowerPoint and show them the steps or you can simply walk them through the process.
1. The first step is to have students set up their own blog via blogger or you can choose to have one class blog. I prefer to have students create their own blog. Allowing students to create their own blog gives them ownership and gives them an online presence that they are responsible for keeping.
2. Once students have created their blogs have them grab the link, and copy it.
3. Return to the wikispace and explain that the left hand frame of a wikispace is like a table of contents. It will show you everything that is on the page and allow you to navigate through the entire site. Also explain that an external link will have a small green arrow after the link name. This will usually take you to another page or another tab depending on which browser you are using.
4. Show your students that when they click below on “edit navigation” at the bottom of the left hand frame, they will have the ability to edit the navigation frame. Remind them that even though the navigation text appears in the main frame, it will still only edit the left-hand navigation frame.
NOTE: When I set this up before I edited the navigation frame the day before to display the title “BLOG ROLL” and underneath I typed in all of their names. This will save you time when setting up this feature on your wikispace. You can select this LINK that will allow you to see my AP English wikis setup.
5. Have students click the “edit navigation” link at the bottom of the navigation frame. The text of the navigation frame will now appear in the main frame on the right. Have each student find his or her name under the blog roll, highlight his or her name, and click on the link button in the editing toolbar. The “add link” window will pop up and allow you to add a link (see images below). After students select “add link” they will be taken back to the main page and their name will now be purple, have a line under it and a little green arrow will be following it. If they see all of these items, they have successfully created an external link to their blog. Make sure students click save, and the wikispace will be updated to reflect changes made.
Today students created a blog that will be used for this class and added an external link to the wikispace. Having a blog roll of your students on your wikispace allows you, the teacher, and your students to learn and collaborate in an organized setting. Tomorrow we will cover blog writing procedures and expectations. For homework, you may want to give your students a writing prompt to blog about and have them post a comment on one of their peers blogs. This homework assignment will help segue into tomorrow’s lesson.