My Story: The Progressive Story Project

Since September 2009, students around the world have been using Karen Ditzler’s Progressive Story Project wiki to collaborate on writing stories. We asked her to tell us a little bit about the project and why Wikispaces was a good fit:

Description of Project
In an effort to find a way to integrate technology into the writing curriculum, show teachers how technology could enhance instruction, and connect students with others outside their classroom, I decided to try out a progressive story with some classes at 2 local schools. When I opened up the project to other classes around the world, I was amazed at how much it grew! Over 250 classes in more than 25 states and 10 countries have created more than 100 stories over the last 2 years. Classes are grouped by age level. One class starts the story on the Wikispace. Then it is passed along until the fifth class finishes the story. Illustrations are done, a VoiceThread is created and students narrate the stories.

Why Wikispaces?
At the start of the project, I tried many different tools, but I decided to use Wikispaces because it allowed me to do everything I needed to do to make the project successful. Each story could have its own page, all the teachers involved could edit the pages, the VoiceThreads could be embedded and it was easy for people to navigate and learn how to use.

My Favorite Feature?
This may sound minor to others, but a feature I found incredibly useful was the search box. I used the search feature hundreds of times during the organization process. After splitting everyone into groups, I could easily find the classes when reviewing stories and answering questions. Each teacher could search for their classes and find out where they were involved.

Any Obstacles?
This past January, I wrote this in my blog post, “I love this project and I want to continue to organize it for teachers and students, but… At times it can be a bit overwhelming.” I got to the point where I was spending so much time organizing, setting up pages, answering questions, collecting pictures, creating VoiceThreads, and contacting participants. I needed a way to spread the responsibility and Wikispaces made it easy for me. Since the teachers were all members of the Wikispace, I could assign Teacher Leaders to organize and run their stories. It was an easy transition and I plan to continue the project!

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2 Comments

  1. Kadidia Doumbia
    Posted July 19, 2011 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

    Wikispaces is a wonderful tool for the classroom.
    Teachers can use it for almost any projects. I am learning to use it right now and I do intend to use it next academic year with my students.

  2. shadowplastc
    Posted July 25, 2011 at 8:03 am | Permalink

    Wikispaces offers the best about what they have. It’s good for this site to help children learn like a real classroom. I wish more things to come from Wikispaces.

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