Wednesday, July 2, 2008

SOS Children: Wikipedia Selection for schools

SOS Children has released a special edition of Wikipedia. The Selection is about the size of a 15 volume encyclopaedia with 24,000 pictures, 14 million words and articles on 4,625 topics. The articles are specifically selected to follow the UK National Curriculum. The articles are also guaranteed child-friendly, so that the encyclopaedia does not contain any information or material that might be inappropriate for children and young people. The encyclopaedia is called Wikipedia for schools and is available online. If you want the encyclopaedia on a laptop without a permanent Internet connection then you are able to download the encyclopaedia from the British website of SOS Children. There are two different files available at the site, one file of 792 MB, and a larger file of 2.5 GB. What distinguishes the large file from the the larger one is that the large file contains full-scale images while the images of the images of the smaller file is compressed to thumbnails. The advantage of Wikipedia for schools version of Wikipedia is that it has been reviewed by experts and therefore errors are corrected. In addition, the Wikipedia for schools are not open for the public to edit, which prevents people from clutter the articles with advertising or their own political opinions. I read some of the articles and I think it was written in a fairly moderate level. In case you want to get a little general knowledge in different areas there would be a good reason to read Wikipedia for schools. For example, I read about Zimbabwe, which gave me some understanding of what is happening there these days, about Mugabe's background, vote-rigging etc. I think that Wikipedia for schools is well worth a visit. You can find Wikipedia for schools on the Internet here. Would you rather download the encyclopedia, you will find links to the files here.

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