Newton Barwa Academy in Qatar shares about how they use their wiki to improve parent communication, save the environment and foster a bit of friendly competition among their teachers.
1. Please describe your school, your wiki, and what you use it for.
We are an International School from Foundation 1 to year 10 with over 2,000 students. We have three campuses and a huge international community.
We decided to use Wikispaces in the primary grades in order to become a paper-free homework school. We were conscious of the high cost of printing and photocopying homework assignments and the impact of so much paper on the environment. We post on our wiki homework assignments, timetable, curriculum, and school activities. Communication to our parents is always a priority. By setting up a wiki, we can communicate more effectively. Information is accessible to all, instead of being buried at the bottom of school bags.
2. Tell us about a particular moment that made you say, “Aha! THIS is why we use wikis!”
My first aha moment is when some parents said to me “Thank you! My son/daughter used to tell me that they do nothing in school. Now thanks to Wikispaces, I can see what they’re doing.” The second aha moment is a real turnaround in those children who did not do homework, either because they lost the handout or simply did not inform their parents. We have seen an impact on academic achievement. Another aha moment is the creativity of our teachers! Putting together the best wiki page has become a bit of a friendly competition.
3. What do you plan to do next with your wiki?
We want put up on our wiki documents and policies for the parents such as our School Uniform, Attendance, and School Handbook. Although our school website has all this information, Wikispaces is more user friendly.
4. If you could ask it, what do you think your wiki would say about you and your school?
I think our wiki would say that we want to work as a team with our parents – that we care and share openly with them. It would also say that we want their child to be given every opportunity to succeed.