Showing posts with label PB Wiki. Show all posts
Showing posts with label PB Wiki. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

PBwiki Is Now PBworks

PBwiki, a great, free wiki service that many educators use has changed its name to PBworks. According to their press release and blog, they changed the name to reflect a move toward becoming a more full-featured collaboration space for businesses and academia. If you're a current PBwiki user all of your wikis and urls will automatically redirect to the new PBworks url. The login credentials that you and your students have created for PBwiki will continue to work the on PBworks. The best news of all is PBworks will continue to give free wiki space to classroom teachers.

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Saturday, November 29, 2008

A New Resource Depot

If you take a look at the left hand column on this blog you will notice a few changes. There are three changes that I think will make Free Technology for Teachers a better resource for visitors. First, all of the links that were in huge lists in the side columns have been condensed. All of the resources that were listed and more are still available, I have moved them onto a wiki which you will see by clicking on "dozens of more resources" at the top of each list.

The second change is a new category of resources dedicated to educational alternatives to YouTube. There are more than 30 links in this list.

The third change is relatively minor. Instead of having resource lists in both side-bars now all of the resource lists are in the left hand column.

I hope these changes are effective in helping teachers find free resources that they can use in the classroom. Please visit the new Free Technology for Teachers wiki to see all of the lists.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Useful New Features on PB Wiki

PB Wiki, the free wiki platform that I introduced to one of my school districts curriculum committees, has announced some great new features for educators. First, PB Wiki has substantially increased the storage space given to free account users. The storage space has increased from 10mb to 2000mb. PB Wiki now allows users to upload files in bulk. A search option has been added to make it easier to find content within your wiki.

The short video below explains and demonstrates the improvements to PB Wiki.

Document Management for Educators from PBwikiWebinars on Vimeo.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Making Classroom Wikis Just Got Easier

A major classroom logistics problem that teachers run into when having students create wikis is students forgetting their login credentials and then having to establish a new account or wait for an email to reset their passwords. PB Wiki has eliminated that problem for teachers by giving teachers the option of quickly and easily creating and managing student login credentials. Watch the short video below to learn how teachers can quickly and easily create student login credentials.


Classroom Accounts from PBwikiWebinars on Vimeo.

PB Wiki
has announced a Back to School Challenge through which teachers can win premium upgrades or a $1000 dollar school supply shopping spree.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Increasing Teacher-Parent Communication. Part II: Websites and Wikis

In part one of this series about increasing and improving teacher-parent communication we looked at using blogs to communicate with parents. Blogs are great tools for communicating with parents, but sometimes they're not quite flexible enough for what you may be trying to do. This is where creating a classroom website or classroom wiki comes in.

With free website building platforms even novice computer users can create a website containing a variety of pages to meet your needs. For example if a teacher could build a website targeted toward helping parents help their students with assignments at home. That teacher could build a page within a the classroom website dedicated to showing and explaining sample math problems or how to distinguish parts of speech. While you could post that information could be posted in a blog entry it's probably easier for parents to find it if by just clicking on a tab or link on the classroom website. On a classroom website a teacher may want to post a calendar of events or copy of classroom and school policies.

Building a classroom wiki is in many ways similar to building a classroom website with the primary difference being that a wiki can have multiple contributors and editors. Creating a classroom wiki that students can contribute to and edit is a great way to get them involved in communicating with their parents about school. Much like building a website, a wiki can have tabbed or categorized browsing to help visitors find information quicker than they would by searching through a blog's archive.

Here is a short video from Common Craft explaining the wiki concept.


Website Builders and Wikis for Education
Weebly is a completely free website building and hosting platform. Getting started is very easy (I personally got two "older" reluctant technophobes started in less than 10 minutes) and the directions are very straightforward. The support/ help team at Weebly is very responsive and will answer any question if you email them. There is a wide variety of templates and color schemes that users can pick from. Finally, unlike some free services your visitors won't be exposed to advertising unless you allow it.

Webnode is another 100% free website building and hosting platform. Like Weebly getting started is quite easy. Webnode gives users a lot of layout flexibility. One of the great things about Webnode is that the sites you build and host on Webnode are compatible with every web browser.

Google Sites
is kind of a hybrid between a website building and hosting platform and a wiki platform. On Google Sites the standard layout options are more like those you would see on a regular website, but unlike some website building and hosting services multiple users can contribute and edit content. Below is a short video introduction to using Google Sites.


Wikispaces is a free wiki service for educators. In an informal comparison with other wiki services my high school students preferred Wikispaces over two other free wiki providers. Initially I was not impressed by Wikispaces because their standard free package would place advertising on the wiki that I had no control over. Then I discovered that Wikispaces has a free option especially for educators that doesn't place questionable advertising on your wiki. Click here to visit the educator page.


PBWiki is the free wiki service that I convinced my district's curriculum coordinator to use with the district's Social Studies teachers to share and collaborate on lesson plans and ideas. PBWiki's free version doesn't place any advertising on your wiki and in my opinion is actually easier for those born before the digital generation to learn and use. PBWiki also, from time to time, hosts great webinars for teachers and parents about online learning and online safety.

WetPaint is another free wiki service that is popular among educators. Like PBWiki and Wikispaces, WetPaint provides a wiki platform for educators that is completely advertising free. WetPaint also provides help to teachers through their education ambassadors. Click here to see the WetPaint education page.

I've only mentioned a few wiki and website builders. There are many others that are free and good for education. If you have a wiki or website builder that you use and would recommend to others please leave a comment.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Three Education Wikis for Technology Integration

There are many, many, wikis about teaching with technology. Some wikis are specific to technology integration in one content area while others are more broad and encompass all content areas. These are three broad-field wikis about teaching with technology that are good resources to point teachers toward. If you have a wiki that should be added to this list, please leave a comment and I'll add it to the list.

WebTools4u2use
has great resources and explanations of video and audio podcasting in the classroom. I also like that there is a page about RSS which is an often overlooked topic in technology integration discussions.

Educationalwikis
is a super resource for information and ideas about using wikis in the classroom.

Learning in Maine Resources started by Jim Burke is targeted toward teachers in Maine (Maine Learning Results are easier to find on this wiki than they are on the DOE website), but the wiki has information that teachers worldwide will find useful.

Your wiki suggestions are wanted, please leave a comment.

Don't know what a wiki is? Watch this easy to understand video.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Free Technology For Teachers: PB Wiki Offers Free Educator Webinar


Online safety and privacy is an extremely important consideration when selecting a web-based application to use with students. PB Wiki, a great and free wiki service, is offering a webinar for educators about online safety for students. The first topic of the webinar is "practical tips for teachers to be safe with their students while using wikis." Fittingly, as this webinar is being hosted by PB Wiki, the agenda for the webinar is written in a wiki and visitors can add their suggests for topics of discussion.

As I've mentioned in previous blog posts about PB Wiki, PB Wiki has a great wiki through which teachers can share ideas about using wikis in education.

If you're wondering what PB Wiki is all about, check out this video.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Free Technology For Teachers: New PB Wiki Features

I've written about using PB Wiki and using a wiki in the classroom in the past. You can read my past writings about using wiki programs here and here. PB Wiki has released a whole bunch of great new features for educators. PB Wiki was the first wiki program I ever used in the classroom so I feel some kind of weird techno-nostalgic connection to PB Wiki. PB Wiki has a great new wiki about using and making wikis with students.

Here are a couple of short videos about using PB Wiki.




Applications for Educators
The PB Wiki educator Wiki has many great resources for teachers. One of the most valuable resources is the collection of rubrics for grading students making a wiki. One of the challenges associated with using new technology that teachers face is how to assess achievement. PB Wiki's educator wiki demonstrates the collective wisdom of teachers around the world collaborating on the creation of rubrics. Collaboration is the real benefit of web 2.0 utilities.
Here are some useful pages from PB Wiki's educator wiki.
Wiki Etiquette for Students
How to assess a student's wiki
Examples of wikis in classrooms.