Day 117: Intro to Wikipedia project

1. Contract distribution. Based on our discussions yesterday, I drew up academic contracts for all students in all classes. Any student with a 75% or below needs to have a parent sign this contract tomorrow! Click below to see the contract for each class:

English Contract 1st period

English Contract 3rd period

English Contract 4th period

English Contract 5th period

English Contract 7th period

2. Wikipedia List-Group-Label. On three separate sticky notes, students wrote down what they think of when they think of Wikipedia. Then, they gathered in small groups to sort their stickies into like-like categories. Finally, they labeled each category. As a class, we posted the sticky notes onto the board to see what most people think about Wikipedia. We found that a lot of students think Wikipedia is totally unreliable! This is not true! According to a 2005 study in Science Wikipedia is as reliable (and therefore as unreliable) as a print encyclopedia. There have been many studies since that generally agree that Wikipedia has some errors but is surprisingly accurate.

3. Introduction to Wikipedia Unit: Calendar and Assignment. Students received a calendar of homework for the next month (download here: Writing Wikipedia Calendar). Then, they took some time to read through the “Master Plan,” which is an introduction to the project. This project was developed specifically for DSA freshman. I presented it at the 2009 AACE Ed-Media conference in Hawaii. My paper was greeted with grumpy scoffs: “What?! You’re going to let kids edit Wikipedia? Aren’t there enough morons on the internet already?” My students and I are going to prove these collegial curmudgeons wrong by learning about, researching, and then improving Wikipedia sites. If you would like to read the paper presented at the conference, which explains why this project is relevant to this age group, you can here: http://rebelliousreader.blogspot.com/2009/04/writing-wikipedia-pages-in.html

4. Homework: Choose a book! Tonight, students need to number from 1-5 which books they would most like to read from the list I handed out in class. You can download the lists here (be careful, each class period is different!):

1st period novel selection

3rd period novel selection

4th period novel selection

5th period novel selection

7th period novel selection

If you want to choose your own book and obtain your own book (buy it), download this:

Choosing Your Own Book

HW: Get contract signed if your Parent Signature line was highlighted. Bring back your YA Novel selection form tomorrow with books rated 1-5 based on what seems most interesting to you.

Absentees: Download the contract for your class. Sign and return. Download the calendar and read the “Master Plan.” Download the novel selection for your class. Research the novel on Wikipedia or Amazon and return tomorrow. I will give you a calendar tomorrow.

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