What we will cover in this session:

to explore blogs and wikis as learning tools for the ESOL classroom
to develop an understanding of how you can use blogs and/ or wikis effectively in your classroom

Web 2.0

Web 2.0 refers to the latest generation of Internet technology. Applications that are interactive, user friendly, linked to other sites and potentially collaborative. Web 2.0, with its emphasis on knowledge construction is beneficial for many of the interactive rich tasks we want our students to be involved in. web1vsweb2.png



Blogs are easily created, easily updateable web logs that allow an author to post thoughts, ideas, images and embed widgets (such as video, documents, slideshows) that appear on the site with the newest entries first. Within their posts, authors can also hyperlink to other websites or blogs, to support any claims that they make or to highlight similar or opposing viewpoints. They engage readers with ideas, questions and links. They allow readers to “comment” – respond to what the author or authors have posted.

Go to the blogging page for more information.

A collaborative webspace where anyone can add content and anyone can edit content that has already been published. Password protected wikis allow teachers and students to control who can access their sites. Just like with blogs, wikis allow uploading and embedding of graphics, links, slideshows, vodcasts, podcasts, documents … Wikis have an important feature: page history. This allows you to see changes which have been made and gives you the ability to revert back to previous versions if someone has mucked up a page.

Go to the **wiki** page for more information.
Why would and should we use wikis and blogs?
"e-Learning has the potential to transform the way we learn. It’s about exploiting technologies and using ICT effectively across the curriculum to connect schools and communities and to support evidence-based decision making and practices in schools.” Steve Maharey, MINISTER OF EDUCATION, June 2006. Ministry of Education. (2006).
Enabling the 21st Century Learner: An e-Learning Action Plan for Schools 2006-2010. Wellington, New Zealand: Learning Media Limited.

How can blogs and wikis assist us in teaching the curriculum, incorporating the KCs?
  • are constructivist tools for learning
  • expand the walls of the classroom
  • are archives of learning, reflection and metacognitive analysis
  • support different learning styles
  • support students to become more information literate

Using Web 2.0 tools such as blogs and wikis, we can build students’ understanding of digital and social technologies. Ensuring that our students have the skills for the 21st century will involve them “having an understanding of how information is created; how information is communicated; and what’s needed to manage, evaluate, synthesize and present information ...” (Lorenzo, 2007, p. 13) Using these internet tools also enables us to teach students about respect for people’s ideas, intellectual property, how to evaluate sources and so on.


Crawford, Nigel. http://elearningnorthland.wikispaces.com/

Hammonds, Bruce. Leading and Learning. http://leading-learning.blogspot.com/

Lorenzo, G. (2007) Catalysts for change: Information fluency, Web 2.0, Library 2.0, and the New Education Culture. Lorenzo Associates, Inc. Retrieved September 29, 2008 from http://www.edpath.com/images/IFReport2.pdf

Pope, J. & Gillon, K. (2009) Do Less. Do It Better. Hatbox Publications.

Richardson, Will. (2006) Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts and other Powerful Web Tools for Classrooms. Australia: Hawker Brownlow Education.

Sharp, Jacqui. ICT Teaching and Learning. http://sharpjacqui.blogspot.com/

The Source for Learning, Inc. Teachers First. http://www.teachersfirst.com/