Make Great Teaching Easier with Projects in Wikispaces Classroom

We love projects in education and think they’re powerful ways for students to show their understanding of a topic and to explore areas of their own interest. We created our Projects feature last year to help facilitate and manage projects in the classroom. In Wikispaces Classroom, Projects are integrated right from the beginning of your experience. *Note– all you need to get started is to go to Settings and select Classroom as your Wiki Type. Private Label folks, coming very soon!

Organization Bar

Organization Bar

Wikispaces Projects are spaces for your students to work in that you can share with only those people you want to be involved. Students can work together in their own space, you can monitor and manage each project, and now, with Classroom, you can use our new Assessment feature to see how students in each Project are doing. Let’s walk you through how to get a Project up and running.

To get started, once you’re in your Wikispaces Classroom, you can either create a Project directly on the Calendar, or go to the Projects link on the top Organizational Bar and start from there. The advantage of starting your Project on your Calendar is 1) the Project will show up for you and your students on the News Feed and 2) you can assign start dates and end dates as you create your Project. You’ll know you’re creating a Project because of the small Project icon on the top right of your post. Just like any other News Feed item, you can also send an email about it to all your students and disable comments if you like. Allowing comments however means that students can discuss and ask questions about the Project right from the News Feed.

Starting a Project

Starting a Project

Once you click Create, you’ll be taken to the Project page. You’ll see your class list on the right, and you’ll be prompted to create Teams. Each team will have their own area to work in, with their own permissions. Once you create Teams, you can either drag and drop students to assign them to Teams or upload a .csv file that has student usernames in one column and the Team you want each student in in the other. You can also Assign Randomly and try your luck with groupings. If there are some pairings that simply won’t work, you can just drag them into a different box. Problem solved!

Creating Teams

Creating Teams

Assigning Members

Assigning Members

Once your Teams are set, you can also set their Permissions. Do this one by one (by clicking on the lock that says “Private,” which is the default setting,) or click “Set All Permissions” at the bottom to set them in one fell swoop. You can also click on the Calendar to track events and due dates for each individual project.

Permissions

Permissions

If a student in the Project looks at their homepage, they will see the Projects they’re in and no one else’s. We hope this makes it dead-easy for students to keep track of their work and contribute.

Project Home Page

Project Home Page

When you click on each individual team, you’ll be taken to that team’s Home Page. You’ll see the pages in that team’s Project listed, and you can track recent changes and any other Pages or Files the Team members have added.

Pages

Pages

If you want to see all Projects again at a glance, simply go back to your orange Organization Bar and click “Projects.” The entire list will pop up, showing members, permissions, and the ability to delete or archive.

Project List

Project List

If a student in the Project looks at their homepage, they will see the Projects they’re in and no one else’s. We hope this makes it dead-easy for students to keep track of their work and contribute.

If you want to see all Projects again at a glance, simply go back to your orange Organization Bar and click “Projects.” The entire list will pop up, showing members, permissions, and the ability to delete or archive.

Assessment

Assessment

Every good project needs a way for the teacher to quickly monitor what’s going on, and our Assessment tool is a great way to do just that. If you click “Projects” inside your Assessments tool, each of your Projects will display showing recent activity, both reading and writing. For now, you can only filter by the last 30 minutes, but soon you’ll be able to view activity over time, making for incredible opportunities for formative assessment. Imagine being able to tell the “Cs through Unn” team what an awesome job they’re doing, and giving the “He through Ne” team a nudge and the support they need to succeed– all within the same class period.

The sky really is the limit when you set up Projects in your classroom. They can be small assignments, large, several month-long projects, or year-long projects, like a space for weekly writing, an ePortfolio, or individual projects. We can’t wait to hear how you use them.

Stay tuned this week as we cover more about the Assessment tool, and do join us for our online Wikispaces Classroom Office Hours and Tour next Tuesday at 4PM Sydney, Australia time! Also feel free to share your classroom here or on Twitter with the #wclassroom hashtag to enter our contest.

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10 Comments

  1. Brittany
    Posted May 2, 2013 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    I currently use the projects feature and have students submit their papers to their individual projects. They create a new page and paste their text. I was using the comments feature before, but now when I comment you cannot see all the comments in the margin — you can only see the little yellow box. This means the student needs to click on every single comment to read it. It also means they cannot print the screen with all their comments in the margins. Can I fix this? Can I revert back to the other version??

  2. Mark
    Posted May 3, 2013 at 7:38 am | Permalink

    I can’t seem to figure out how to add pages when I create a classroom wiki. Am I missing something?

  3. Mariona
    Posted May 9, 2013 at 11:24 pm | Permalink

    Hi,

    First of all. Thank you! It has been a great improvement. It says a lot about you how you work hard to help teachers, and we can use it without paying. Really, a huge THANKS to all of you.

    I’ve been amazed about all the changes in Wikispaces Classroom. And the “Project” area is exactly what I needed, so I’ve already set up a Project and created individual teams for my students so they’ll be able to create an ePortfolio.

    I just wanted to know. Is there any way to check the changes that have been done in the Projects pages, without actually entering there? In my case I have 24 teams (one per student) and they need to write down something every week. I’d like to be able to check if any of them have done any change in their page without entering each one of the pages in the project.

    I guess that when the Assesment part will show more than 30 minutes I’ll be able to check which one have entered the wiki. Meanwhile, is there any other option?
    Thanks!

  4. wendy
    Posted May 13, 2013 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    Hi Mariona! You’ve just described our new Assessment tool which is designed around the idea of formative assessment, but you’re right, it currently is only set to the last 30 minutes. If you click on that at the top of your page, you’ll see a list of projects (choose “Projects” from the drop-down) and you’ll be able to monitor activity– writing, recent edits, who is viewing a page– all from one go. We hope to have the new time features up very soon! We’d love to hear more about how your Projects are going as ePortfolios– please feel free to email us at help@wikispaces.com if you’d like to share more about your work for our blog!

  5. wendy
    Posted May 13, 2013 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    Hi Mark! You need to press “pages and files” and then “Add a Page.” Let us know how it goes!

  6. wendy
    Posted May 13, 2013 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    Hi Brittany, Thanks for your feedback. You can still see everything by clicking on “Discussions” on the top right, and students can simply roll their mouse over the yellow box to get a highlight and preview of the comment. Let us know how it goes!

  7. Suzie Flores
    Posted June 3, 2013 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

    Any ideas for the little ones?

  8. sharleen
    Posted June 8, 2013 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

    Hi
    Im new to creating wiki spaces and I have to do an assessment that allows for students to upload their work onto the wiki, but am unsure of hot to do this, I have read the tutorials but they can be confusing. I am currently only studying my teaching and therefore dont have a classroom yet, but need to do this for my placement assessment. I cant afford to pay for the upgrades and want to know is there anything free and available that does something similiar to the classroom wiki…

    Please someone get back to me.

    Thanks sharleen

  9. wendy
    Posted June 17, 2013 at 1:45 am | Permalink

    Hi Sharleen! You can have students upload files to a page– feel free to email us at help@wikispaces.com and we’d be happy to help!

  10. wendy
    Posted June 17, 2013 at 1:47 am | Permalink

    Hi Suzie! What grade level are you working with? We have a few great K-1 classrooms doing very simple things, like adding a picture, successfully.

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