Fiona Grant and Rochelle Jensen started the Digistore wiki in October of 2008.
1. Briefly describe your group, your wiki, and what you use it to do:
Digistore – Te Pataka Matihiko is one of a number of online communities in Te Kete Ipurangi, New Zealand’s bilingual education portal and an initiative of the Ministry of Education. Digistore is the gateway to a storehouse of quality digital content for New Zealand educators and is designed to support learning across the curriculum, from early childhood through to senior secondary.
The purpose of this wiki is to reinforce the key messages about effective use of digital content and also explore the types of teaching approaches that will have a positive impact on student learning (The New Zealand Curriculum, p.34, 2007). The wiki includes examples of how digital content has been embedded into existing programmes of learning, tools and resources to support teaching and learning and links to other relevant digital content and learning experiences. Like Digistore, this wiki will continue to evolve as the community develops its capacity to effectively integrate digital resources to improve learning outcomes for students.
While the wiki is maintained by DigiAdvisers Rochelle Jensen and Fiona Grant, the content is a collaboration and is increasingly growing and changing as a result of contributions and recommendations from the Digistore community and New Zealand educators.
2. Besides the Edit button, which wiki feature is your favorite?
Widgets and the ability to embed dynamic content into the wiki pages. Embedding widgets is not only fast but adds visually to the pages and provides lots of flexibility and options to demonstrate effective practice.
3. What is one way you’re using wikis and other web 2.0 tools in your projects?
Wikispaces provides lots of options for us to link and embed content and contributions from other educators. We are able to share student and teacher voices using video and photo sharing sites, and embed both multimedia and collaborative tools into the pages. Storing, organising, and sharing content in this way adds to the visual appeal of the pages and also helps us to organise and re-purpose content easily and in response to what we need and, most importantly, what is current for the educators and the community.
4. Tell us about a particular moment that made you say, “Aha! THIS is why I use wikis!”
Rocky and Fiona have been using blogs for the past few years as a medium to communicate ideas and thinking and support their work as e-Learning facilitators. With the explosion of Web 2.0 and the increase in online collaboration and learning opportunities, the wiki platform is recognised as an environment that is open and responsive to user-generated content development. It also provides a space where the online can support the face-to-face through sharing strategies that school leaders can harness to build capacity in the sector. Providing free spaces for educators was also a plus…no scary or annoying adverts to dodge!
5. If you could ask it, what do you think your wiki would say about you?
Along with Software for Learning, another Te Kete Ipurangi community utilising a wiki, we see these online spaces supporting the parent sites by utilising the power of Web 2.0 and networking to provide responsive and real time support and inspiration for educators. We believe that the wiki recognises the value of both teacher and student voice and the opportunities to support a blended approach to learning for teachers and students. It says… we love learning and recognise the value of our professional learning network.