Online networking goes further than Facebook. Duncan Wilson has created a site where pupils can vote on each other's work.
Social networking has transformed the possibilities for interactive resources for the classroom. It has dynamic, user-generated content that grows, it can be shared and is particularly beneficial for rural schools.
I created a password-protected working site called Schoolpal where pupils can make friends, write their blogs, upload and download documents and send messages.
Perhaps the most exciting development is the voting features - pupils can publish their work and have it voted on by their peers. Each half-term we award a prize for top of the charts and I believe the "positive peer pressure" has been inspiring.
At the moment my pupils are uploading and voting on screenshots of posters and PowerPoints produced as part of their GCSE coursework. Our next GCSE unit is spreadsheet-based so I will create a category for spreadsheet interface screenshots. After that we will be running a competition for best data entry form design in Microsoft Access. The voting really does increase the pupils' interest and I have noticed some good features of design being spread around the pupils' work.
Pupils have one vote per day on each piece of work, which encourages them to return to the site and view new content.
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