Home > Uncategorized > Wikifying Durham!

Wikifying Durham!

This week I saw a newspaper account of Triangle Wiki, an effort to create a hub for information about history, government, business, media–all things local–to “increase collaboration and knowledge sharing across the region.”  It’s been in development for a few months, and on Thursday it officially launched with the first 1,000 pages.

As a wiki fan, I was immediately drawn to this idea. So far, it is mostly Raleigh based; the leaders of it are at Red Hat, SAS, IBM, NC State.  They’re looking for Durham people to get involved, though.  I sent out a few email messages to Durhamites who might be interested.  “This would make a cool class project,” was a line included in a couple of the messages to school people.  “But what class?” was the unwritten, frustrated comeback in my mind.  I’m always dreaming up ideas for interdisciplinary activities that don’t fit into Durham Academy’s disciplinary structure.

But then I thought about my 11th grade Writing Seminar, which will soon wrap up a unit on personal essays and be ready to study a different kind of writing.  I was planning to do blogging, but my syllabus says “Digital Writing.”  This is the year they study US History and American Literature, this is the year we open with the Downtown Durham Scavenger Hunt.  We’re always looking for “real world” connections to what we do in the classroom, and here’s a great opportunity. With fifteen students working for a couple of weeks, I think we could make a good start on the Durham portion of the Triangle Wiki, and it would be fun for students to create pages for the things they know and care about.

Yesterday I floated the idea in the Triangle Wiki Facebook group. Looks like it’s a go!

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  1. March 18, 2012 at 8:56 pm

    Sounds like a great idea. I need to learn more about wikis

    • April 7, 2012 at 7:49 pm

      Wikis are a terrific tool! I use them a lot to collect both group projects and individual work. WikiSpaces is an easy tool to learn (especially for someone like you who is comfortable creating web pages). Google docs also allows for collaboration, but on a smaller scale: the product is a document, whereas a wiki can generate a series of “documents” or web pages, and the structural relationships among them can be as simple or complex as you want.

  2. March 23, 2012 at 8:48 am

    Hi T!

    This looks like a great idea to me. It occurred to me as I was reading your post that you and I share a passion to try to make our teaching really relevant. It occurs to me that I can learn a lot from you and the way you work with your students, and with new technology….So, I may just sign up for an email feed!

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