For the purpose of this blog, I explored Wikispaces (http://www.wikispaces.com/). This was a technology tool for which I had signed up many eons ago, but I did not ever use regularly. I enjoyed the fact that this tool provided many desirable aspects similar to iTunesU, Google Classroom, or the online student management software currently in use at our school. This space included a calendar to help students (and the teacher) organize due dates and expected learning intentions, as well as the ability to add files as attachments and create discussion boards for students to engage with one another as they digest complex ideas. The only element that I did not particularly like is the fact that I would have approve student memberships. While this step seems like a minor inconvenience, as a teacher who has access to an online learning management system that is synced with my grade book, as well as the ability to communicate with parents, I found this particular step tedious.
Overall, my experience with this tool was positive, as it contained many of the elements I regularly use with my own students. I see the success my students have with online discussion boards, as well as accessing the documents, videos, and presentation materials we use online, and I see how these elements are also available on Wikispaces. Because I have these instructional tools available on our student management system, I do not foresee myself regularly using Wikispaces. If I were to use a tech tool like this, I would most likely utilize iTunesU (if it ever becomes available on MacBooks), as it would allow me to upload an entire course, piece by piece and our students currently work in a 1:1 environment.
Until we meet again, remember the happiness there is to find in this world, especially on the pages of a book.