Submissions/Wikipedia and Primary School

From Wikimania 2013 • Hong Kong

This is an accepted submission for Wikimania 2013.

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Submission no.
Subject no.
Title of the submission
Wikipedia and Primary School: Providing on Wikipedia the information necessary to complete the cycle of primary education in the languages used by the different education systems.
Type of submission


Author of the submission

Iolanda Pensa, Isla Haddow-Flood and Luca Martinelli

Country of origin

Italy; South Africa


Wikimedia Italy; Wikimedia Switzerland.

E-mail address



Personal homepage or blog


A presentation of the project Wikipedia and Primary School which aims at providing on Wikipedia the information necessary to complete the cycle of primary education in the languages used by the different education systems.

Detailed proposal

Wikipedia is an educational tool and it is currently available online, via mobile phones and offline. The experience of offline distribution of Wikipedia in Kenya have showed that, once accessible, Wikipedia does not provide information that responds directly to curriculum-based questions. Wikipedia and Primary School is a project which wants to allow students, families and teachers to find on Wikipedia the documentation necessary to obtain the primary school qualification in their country, in their language. The project relies on Wikipedia as an existing and growing resource, and it fosters Wikipedia content, quality and outreach.
The presentation describes the project and its strategy, and it aims at starting a discussion around it.
Wikipedia and Primary School (2012-2015) is conceived as an international and collaborative project which needs to bridge different existing initiatives and to involve a wide community; it works in three main directions:

  1. Research. Research follows the entire project by monitoring Wikipedia in different linguistic editions; understanding the different national education systems and identifying which are the content capable of responding to curriculum-based questions; involving a scientific committee composted of different stakeholders in contributing to the project (teachers, experts in education, Wikipedia active contributors and people involved in different open knowledge projects); monitoring and evaluating the project.
  2. Online development. The online approach focuses on producing content for Wikipedia. It focus on establishing and managing a Wikipedia Scientific Journal (a peer-reviewed scientific publication in Creative Commons attributions share-alike license, designed to collect and assess the content related to the project); producing datasets (dataset includes administrations, monuments, flora and fauna); uploading content (in particular OER Open Educational Resources already available, images and texts provided with an open license compatible with Wikipedia); supporting territorial development with tutors and with upload capacities (in particular for countries with low connectivity).
  3. Territorial development. The territorial approach tests and enhance the use of Wikipedia in primary school and it is developed in collaboration with the stakeholders already working in the field of education. It focuses on providing training (in particular training for Wikipedians in residence, people who can assist institutions and being a link between a specific place and Wikipedia); organising Wikipedia events (in particular organising Wiki Loves Monuments); tutoring institutions and people who can and want provide content for Wikipedia; national networking; developing pilot projects in schools and in collaboration with NGOs working in education; establishing hotspots where relevant; facilitating the distribution of Wikipedia offline in countries where relevant.

At the moment WikiAfrica Cameroon promoted by doual'art with the support of Orange Foundation is developing a pilot project around primary school (2012-2013). A feasibility study has been developed in 2012 with the support of lettera27 Foundation to evaluate the possible synergies between Wikipedia and primary school with a focus on the linguistic edition of Wikipedia and their use in primary school in Africa, current Wikimedia projects, OER-Open Educational Resources (it is important to mention that OER for primary school are extremely limited) and case studies on the primary schools systems and current relevant projects in the field of education in Italy, Cameroon and South Africa.


Cultural and Education Outreach

Length of presentation/talk
25 Minutes
Language of presentation/talk


Will you attend Wikimania if your submission is not accepted?

Yes, in any case I will attend Wikimania thanks to a scholarship from Wikimedia CH.

Slides or further information (optional)

Interested attendees

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  1. أمير إ. أهروني 20:46, 5 March 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  2. Slashme (talk) 19:25, 7 April 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  3. Ldavis (WMF) (talk) 17:56, 25 April 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  4. Thuvack (talk) 18:59, 30 April 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  5. --Aubrey (talk) 21:29, 3 May 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  6. GastelEtzwane (talk) 16:04, 4 May 2013 (UTC) Very much interested in the subject of using Wikipedia in schools.[reply]
  7. --Chandres (talk) 12:46, 16 May 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  8. --Ecce Ralgis (háblame) 23:39, 9 August 2013 (UTC)[reply]