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What is a Wiki

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					Tutorial on Wikis
The primary school wiki project (Flags) and the secondary school wiki project (Home Sweet Home) both show you how to use a class wiki between two countries. First you will need to learn how to set up a wiki – to do this, please follow the tutorial below.

1 What is a wiki?
A wiki (the word is Hawaiian for „quick‟!) is a series of web pages on the Internet that can be immediately and easily edited by anyone with a password to your wiki. They are collaborative spaces online where you can share and create information among a number of users. There are some wikis which do not require a password, and are open to the general public, such as wikipedia ( ). However, the software that we recommend for setting up your wiki (called pbwiki) does require users to have a password to edit the wiki – this will protect your learners‟ privacy. You can make your wiki public, but most people keep their wikis private, to share only with specific groups of people – this is the option we recommend with your learners (see how to make your wiki private in Step 7 below). A wiki is collaborative, as it can be updated and edited by several people. The content of a wiki depends on you, and what your learners would like to write in it. You‟ll find suggestions for wiki projects to set up and run with your learners here. A wiki usually consists only of text, but it can also include photos.

2 Getting started: Setting up your wiki
There are several different sites offering free wiki services, but one of the easiest to use is pbwiki (Short for „peanut butter wiki‟ – “Easy as a peanut butter sandwich”, says the pbwiki site). In this tutorial we explore the basic functions of pbwiki. Note that we do not cover all the functions, simply those that you need to successfully set up the Flags (for primary schools) and Home Sweet Home (for secondary schools) wiki projects.

Step 1: Create a wiki To set up a new wiki in pbwiki, go to, and you will see this screen.

First you need to give your wiki a name, which will be its web address. The wiki in the screenshot is called etwinningwiki – note that your wiki name must have no spaces, and can consist of letters and/or numbers. Then type in your email address, and click on „Make a wiki‟. The following screen will appear:

Step 2: Confirm your wiki and set a password An email will immediately be sent to your email address, asking you to click on a link to set your wiki‟s password. The email will look something like this:

Follow the instructions, by clicking on the link in the email, and you will be taken to a page where you can set the password for your wiki.

Type your password in the „Pick a password‟ box, and again in the „Confirm password‟ box. Make sure you note down and remember your wiki password! You will need to give this to your learners so that they can edit the wiki. If you prefer not to make your wiki available to the public, uncheck the box that says „Make my wiki public‟. Click on „Take me to my wiki‟.

Step 3: Edit your wiki front page

You will be taken to the front page of your wiki, which currently looks like this:

Click on the blue button which says „Edit this page‟ on the bottom left of the screen. You will see the Welcome information text above in editable format, so you can now delete it all, and replace it with an introduction to your own wiki. In the screenshot below is a sample introductory text you could use for your wiki (change the countries and names of schools!):

Note 1: You can use the icons on the right to make your text bold, italicised etc, or to include bullet points or numbering – much as in a simple word processing program. Note 2: If you click on the blue link „Wiki Style‟ which is above the text box, you will be shown a number of formatting features you can add to your text, such as boxes around text, adding tables, or files and pictures, and changing font size. These are all fairly easy to do, by following the instructions in „Wiki Style‟, but

none are strictly necessary. We will look later in this tutorial at how to upload pictures to your wiki (Step 5). Click on the „Preview‟ button if you would like to see what your text will look like before you publish it in your wiki. To then publish your text in the wiki, click on „Update‟. You will now see the published version of your wiki Front Page, and you are ready to add more pages to your wiki!

Step 4: Creating a new page There are two ways to make a new page in your wiki: 1 By linking from inside an already created page: In Edit mode in your Front Page (or in any other page), simply type in the name of a new page in the text box itself. Do this either in a combination of capital and normal letters with no spaces (e.g. ‟FoodInSpain‟) or by putting your new page name inside square brackets (e.g. See our page on [food] in Spain) 2 By using the Search box: Simply type the name of the new page in the Search box (e.g. Food in Spain), or type it in as a web address (e.g. This will automatically create the new page – you can see it listed if you click on the blue „All pages‟ tab.

We recommend the first option above for creating a new page. This means that it will be easy to find your new page, especially if you link it from your Front Page. Below is a second version of the Front Page in edit mode, which has been edited to include links to new pages – your learners can then work on the content of these new pages. Remember to click on „Update‟ to save your edited changes!

The same Front Page, with the new pages created, now looks like this:

Step 5: Adding pictures / photos to a wiki page To add a photo to your wiki, you will first need to have the photo stored on your computer. Follow the steps below. Note: If you download and save images from the Internet to use in your wiki, you will need to comply with copyright law. See for advice on finding and using images from the Internet 1 Go to the wiki page where you would like to add a picture. 2 Click on the blue „Files‟ tab in the top menu bar. You will see this screen:

3 Click on „Examine / Browse‟, and select the photo you want to use from your computer, and click „Open‟ - click then „Upload‟. Once the photo is uploaded, it will appear as a blue link in the section on the screen above called „Manage Uploaded Files‟. In the screenshot above, we have uploaded a photo called „butifarra‟, which we would like to use on our wiki page about Spanish food. 4 Click on the blue link for the photo – it will take you to a webpage where the photo is being stored for you. Copy and paste the webpage address from the tool bar.

5 Go back to the page where you want to add a picture, click the blue „Edit this page‟ button, and locate where in the text you want the picture. Now paste the photo address you copied in 4 above, making sure to put it inside square brackets [ ]. Click „Update‟. Here is our page on Spanish food in Edit mode, with the photo address included in the text box, in square brackets.

This is what the page looks like when published, with the photo included:

Step 6: Changes made to your wiki Although anyone with a password can edit any of the pages in your wiki, all previous versions of a page are kept, and you can restore past versions at any time. To see what changes have been made to your wiki, and by whom, click on the blue „Changes‟ tab in the top tool bar, from any page. Click on „Changes‟ from within the Food in Spain page, for example, and you will see this screen:

To see exactly what changes were made to the pages, click on the red plus sign (+) on the left of each change, and you will see this:

Step 7: Your wiki settings From any page in your wiki, click on the blue „Settings‟ tab in the top tool menu. This takes you to this page:

From here you can change the name of your wiki (which does not affect its web address), and you can provide a description of your wiki. If you scroll down this screen, you‟ll see that you can also change the following settings:       change your wiki‟s appearance change the visibility by making your wiki public or private change the timezone, so that times displayed for wiki postings are those of the user(s) hide or display tips for every time you log on download backups of your wiki in the form of a zip file change your password

You are now ready to set up a class wiki in pbwiki – good luck!

This tutorial was developed by Nicky Hockly of The Consultants-E.

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