MSM #35 Wikis, Gaming and Instruction

News and Information

NMSA Annual Conference, October 30 – November 1, 2008
Housing and Transportation updated on website.  Make housing arrangements via their website for discounts on hotel rooms. 

1.  Students want more use of gaming technology in their learning.  64% of students report that they are gamers and consider that a must have in their schools.  Only 15% of teachers see that as a means of effective teaching.  Source:  eSchool News. 

2.  DimensionM:  Learn Algebra through a Second Life style interface and solve problems in the game that teach algebraic concepts. 

3.  Recommended game resources

  • Create a graphic novel from a traditional novel using Comic Life or spice up your notes with creative visuals using the Comic Life software to mix up your notes and presentations.
  • Restaurant Empire:  Create a restaurant, choose your recipes, hire your chefs and manage your empire in either a free limited version or a full pay version.  More simulation games from this group here.  (NMSA)
  • Oil Tycoon:  start with a small plot of land, some cash and build your empire to rule the world!
  • Civilization:  Take on the attributes of a past civilization and guide it through time.  The always entertaining version of “what if” in History.  Barzun, Graff, and Breisach (Historiographers and researchers) might take issue with it to a degree, but it gives the student a way to investigate what happened vs. what might have happened if they knew then what you know now.  All that without worrying about messing up the space/timeline thingy and figuring out a Heisenberg Principle Compensator device . . .
  • Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom:  Online simulation of China’s Middle Kingdom.
  • Health Care simulators.

Online Insight: Challenges beat Cheerleading
Simply providing online discussion forums is not enough to keep students engaged in virtual courses, according to educators who are well-versed in online instruction: For real learning to occur in an online setting, virtual-school educators must establish clear rubrics and enforce rules for participation.
Check out the article for more information.

Learn about Wikis and discover ways they’re being used.  (Wiki-Waki-Woo!)
Wikis have great potential as an educational tool for both teachers and students because they encourage collaborative learning and resource sharing. Among the things they can be used for are:
– Collaborative writing
– Brainstorming
– Creation and organization of content and study guides
– Lesson summaries
– Group notetaking
– Dissemination of classroom information
– Literature circles
– Collaborative textbooks
– Resource collections
– Vocabulary study

Comparing Hemispheres – project between schools in NY and Australia
Westwood Schools Wikionline space for Camilla, GA students
Welker’s Wikinomics – AP Economics class at Shanghai American School
Hanalee Book Wiki – 5th graders study of the novel, Turn Homeward, Hannalee
Arbor Heights Elementary School Wiki wiki as a school web site
Flat Planet Wikispace – students in Canada and UK examine environmental issues
Photosharing with Flickr Workshopwiki to provide resources for workshop
wikiHow – collaborative project to build world’s largest how-to manual

Create a wiki at WikiSpaces.

Good spot to find more information about a variety of technologies. Common Craft.