Tips and Tricks: Prepping your wiki for summer

There are a lot of educators out there, using wikis and reading this blog. And right about now, you’re probably starting to think about wrapping up the school year. Just for you, here are some helpful hints for winding down your wikis at the end of the year. We hope this will help you get as much as you can from them.

Take time to review
The simplest steps are often the easiest to overlook. Make sure you take few minutes to run a “post mortem” on your wiki. Either alone or with your class, go through the wiki and ask a few simple questions:

  • What worked well in this wiki?
  • What didn’t work?
  • What would I do again?
  • What would I do differently next time?

You can also look back at how your wiki has performed by reviewing your wiki stats.

Export your wiki
You (and your students) have put a lot of work into that wiki. Why not take it with you?

  1. Make sure you’re logged in as the organizer of the wiki.
  2. Go to Manage Wiki.
  3. Scroll down to Tools and click Exports.
  4. Select the Content Type (HTML, wikitext, or PDF), and, if applicable, File Type (.zip or .tgz).
  5. Click Export Wiki.
  6. Wait. It may take a couple of minutes to process your export. You can either wait for it to run, or you can leave the page and go do something else — you’ll get a message (and, if your address is confirmed, an email) when the export is ready.

The Export Wiki page also keeps an archive of all the wiki exports you’ve processed, so you can save the export to your hard drive now or later or never. It’s up to you.

While you’re enjoying your summer vacation on a tropical beach without internet access, you can still open up your wiki on your laptop, and look back at all the great work you’ve done.

Save individual pages of student work
Whether your students are compiling their online portfolios or just want a record of their work, it’s easy to export single pages from any wiki. You can do this for them, or give them these instructions and they can capture all the PDFs they want:

  1. Go to the wiki page you want to export. It doesn’t matter whether you’re logged in. As long as you can see the page, you can export a PDF.
  2. Roll over the down arrow on the Page tab.
  3. Select Download PDF from the dropdown list.
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7 Comments

  1. Posted June 2, 2011 at 4:44 am | Permalink

    Something else worth mentioning is to manage members and organizers of the wiki. Many teachers add students as members and/or organizers and since those students will have other teachers next year you may want to remove their editing capabilities from their wiki to make room for next years students.

  2. Posted June 3, 2011 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

    So your on holiday, its raining and there’s not much on the TV can I work on the back-up (Exported) version of the wiki and if so how do I re upload the changes – sad I know but there are times when faced with this situation.

  3. Sam Cheesman
    Posted June 5, 2011 at 11:31 pm | Permalink

    I often use written course evaluations for my students to review the year and offer feedback for the following year’s planning, however, having just used a wiki for the first time over the last 12 months, reviewing it is an obvious suggestion that I had overlooked. Thanks for thinking of it and adding the reminder about wiki stats!

  4. Stephanie Gardner
    Posted June 6, 2011 at 10:35 am | Permalink

    Is there a way to quickly delete all old posts to the discussion board?

  5. Kirsten Nelson
    Posted June 7, 2011 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    I used my wikispace for reading group discussions- it was an extension of work students completed throughout the year, and worked beautifully. My students loved posting their thoughts about the chapter books they read so much, that we started compiling summer reading lists before the end of the year. Now, my students who move on to middle school next year, continue to use the wiki to talk about summer reading. Two weeks into the summer they have read on average two to three books apiece. That may have something to do with my annual summer reading contest (top two readers go to lunch with me in the fall), but the wiki makes more kids motivated to participate. I’ll clean up my wiki right before the start of next year ;)

  6. Debbie
    Posted June 13, 2011 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

    Hi Stephanie,

    You can find a great tip for clearing out old posts on the bottom of this tips & tricks: http://tangient.wpengine.com/2011/06

    Cheers,
    Debbie

  7. Debbie
    Posted June 13, 2011 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

    Hi Jutka,

    You can import the updated content using WebDAV: http://help.wikispaces.com/webDAV

    Cheers,
    Debbie

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