So what's the big deal?
This site is exciting on several levels!
1. Do you have a challenging time accessing age appropriate text online for classroom instruction? This is an excellent resource where we can grab text for our students that is simplified, relative to other online encyclopedia resources. It is possible to attach a voice to it so that students can hear the text being read aloud which provides an independent, multi-sensory experience.
2. Do you need to offer differentiated instruction for your students? Then copy and paste text into Microsoft Word, use the auto-summarize feature and cognitively rescale the information for differentiated instruction in the classroom. This guide provides information about how to autosummarize text - "Autosummarize for Cognitive Rescaling."
3. Teaching your student's about online safety and the accuracy of online resources? The Teacher's Guide highlights instructional benefits of using Simple Wikipedia, including the following:
Most youths will likely at some point become involved in interactive online activities. For educators, youths' involvement with Wikipedia provides an opportunity to survey youths' understanding of online safety, and to teach appropriate practices. Educators can use Wikipedia as a way of teaching students to develop hierarchies of credibility that are essential for navigating and conducting research on the Internet.Another resource that provides instructional options.
Wikipedia provides an opportunity for teachers to discuss the concept of the public domain. Wikipedia is an opportunity to participate in an open community that relies primarily on mutual respect and cooperation, but which is not related to familiar authority figures some youths might tend to oppose.
Editing in Wikipedia is an opportunity to learn to participate in collective editorial processes. Wikipedia presents a ready opportunity for youths to research, compile and publish articles for peer review. For youths who contribute images, selection and production of an image provides opportunities to learn what a market wants from an artist. Youths who master skills for accurate writing and drawing about encyclopedic subjects are better equipped to develop their own style in more creative genres.
Because all articles in Wikipedia must conform to neutral point-of-view, students participating in collaborative editing activities on Wikipedia are building experience in detecting and eliminating bias in writing.