Proposal talk:Wikipedia exclusively for Kids

From Strategic Planning
Latest comment: 14 years ago by Fasten in topic Psychology

I agree with this proprosal 100%. If I had a son or a daughter someday, I would homeschool him/her and teach him/her how to read using Wikipedia. However, I don't believe that most of the standard English Wikipedia articles are suitable for a young child to hone his/her reading skills on because of complexity, mature subject matter, etc. A Wikipedia exclusive for kids would be the safe way for kids to hone their literacy skills in addition to their knowledge of the world. GVnayR 16:28, 14 August 2009 (UTC)Reply

Questioning restrictions on who can edit

I think kids should be encouraged to edit this, simply because that will engage them much better. I was under 12 recently enough to remember it well, and I would have felt somewhat empowered if I were contributing useful material to Wikikids (or whatever it is called).

Of course we would still require good citations on everything.

I think this is the best proposal I have seen yet.

Sounds more like a 3-8 year old thing

Your description sounds like it would be good for a 3-8 year old. Take it from an eleven year old, every kid I've met within two years of my age range has hated websites that assume kids 12 and under like bright colors and animations and noises. I think a kids Wikipedia should just be articles that interest kids,not a bunch of animations and noises, and only admins/trusted parents should be able to edit it.

Great Idea

It's been suggested before. See The Meta proposal. Barista Girl 03:26, 15 August 2009 (UTC)Reply

Also, I disagree with the idea of restricting editing to only adults. This goes against Wikimedia's spirit of how "anyone can edit." Do I think younger kids should edit? Not necessarily. Say, maybe 12+. Barista Girl 14:17, 15 August 2009 (UTC)Reply

Explanation by author

Yes,I accept!By saying, using colors & animations ,I meant it should be interesting to kids.I saw Wikijunior.But what I suggest is far more developed than that.A site where kids can find anything they want,in the way they like!! Imagine teachers advise students to refer to KidsWiki! KidsWiki, I suggest in this proposal is a Kids funland through the paths of knowledge!Pasanbhathiya2 12:42, 15 August 2009 (UTC)Reply

Okay, let me make my point a bit more clear.

Kids really don't like colors and sounds and animations. Maybe some do, but every kid I hang out with at recess hates websites that think kids love bright colors and noises and animations. If you are going to make a WikiKids or whatever, please make the option to turn the animations and such off.

I agree with the other person.

Seriously, no one that I know would like unnecessary noises, sounds, or animations. And I should know, being 12 myself. So yes, I also reckon that it's more a Australian 3rd grade thing at the oldest(around 7-9 years of age)because after that you just want the information to complete your assignment, not a thousand distractions.

Of course,it is

I accept this idea.Ok,if this sound & animation problem makes this much dispute,lets see for a better way. I really like the idea of turning sounds on/off. Let me be clear! These sounds and animations should not be silly tricks to keep children.I too was a kid until recently.So I know what they like.I also didnt like silly animations & sounds.But see, classic wikipedia is not interesting to kids. I mean there must be a change in the interface. The most important thing is the content. The articles should be pleasing to read with of course no difference of information in the Main wikipedia and kids wikipedia. Pasanbhathiya2 07:58, 16 August 2009 (UTC)Reply

Only Editors with Established Accounts Should Edit

I think it's obvious that vandalism is more prone to happen with non-registered editors than with editors with accounts. The Kids Wiki, if made, should be restricted to only editors with established accounts. After all, I don't think anybody here would want to allow your children to view inappropiate things, which is what is likely to happen if some vandal decides he/she wants to mess around with the Kids Wiki (Which is especially worse for shared IP addresses). This would not restrict other "children" to edit Wikipedia, but would only allow those with the mental capability to open an account to be able to edit it.--Voice of Reason; 15:23, 16 August 2009 (UTC)

One could invite school districts to run OpenID servers and restrict the authors to teachers and other adults identified by schools. If pupils are meant to edit one could go further and allow the teachers to identify their pupils. Teachers could then be responsible to proofread the content submitted by their pupils. --Fasten (Wikinews: Aktion Deutschland Hilft asks for donations after the earthquake in Indonesia) 21:45, 11 October 2009 (UTC)Reply

OK - Here's the Solution

I got to this conversation after a fellow teacher asked me if I knew of any kid-friendly online encyclopedias. Apart from a British initiative to "box" part of Wikipedia for use in high schools there, I couldn't think of anything of quality for our younger learners (I'm thinking 7 - 10 yr olds). A few years ago I had several classes of 10 yr olds create an online wiki-encyclopedia that could really have done with some peer editing.

What if we opened this initiative up to teachers and their students. After all, it's the topics being taught in our schools all around the world that will be the highest demand in such a wikipedia. Teachers can be the editors and the students the contributors. Think of all the great information being produced around the world by our kids that could be used! Imagine how empowered students will feel when their teachers select their group's work to be included in this wikipedia. After submitting entries, kids could get involved in editing activities (this could be done by older students as well). They could check the information being produced and make sure the citations are correct or just do a general grammar clean up.

A big demand on teachers these days is to help their students become more globally connected - this will satisfy these demands as well as meeting demands on the older students to be able to scrutinize web content, research, and effectively cite sources.

I would be able to get classes started straight away if someone could get this thing rolling.

Thank you for that assessment and please make sure to send those teachers also to Assistant teacher course. --Fasten (Wikinews: Aktion Deutschland Hilft asks for donations after the earthquake in Indonesia) 21:29, 11 October 2009 (UTC)Reply


Some proposals will have massive impact on end-users, including non-editors. Some will have minimal impact. What will be the impact of this proposal on our end-users? -- Philippe 00:19, 3 September 2009 (UTC)Reply


  From the standpoint of the educator, in other words, the various studies represent working resources, available capital. Their remoteness from the experience of the young is not, however, seeming; it is real. The subject matter of the learner is not, therefore, it cannot be, identical with the formulated, the crystallized, and systematized subject matter of the adult; the material as found in books and in works of art, etc. The latter represents the possibilities of the former; not its existing state. It enters directly into the activities of the expert and the educator, not into that of the beginner, the learner. Failure to bear in mind the difference in subject matter from the respective standpoints of teacher and student is responsible for most of the mistakes made in the use of texts and other expressions of preexistent knowledge. 

Democracy and Education, John Dewey

What is the psychological effect on the average adolescent if he still cannot understand a specific article

  • at 12?
  • at 15?
  • at 18?

The effect is probably different already for the fifteen-year-old. At twelve not fully understanding the adult world is more or less expected. At fifteen the adolescent might experience a certain frustration and defeat and at eighteen this may have become an educational problem already because the adolescent may have learned to accept that he is unable to understand certain concepts. (One could, of course, argue that this is not the obligation of an encyclopedia but any educator or source of education can conveniently delegate responsibility to others; Wikimedia cannot make any assumptions about the quality of school education that are valid world-wide.) I do think that is a strong argument in favor of this proposal. --Fasten (Wikinews: Aktion Deutschland Hilft asks for donations after the earthquake in Indonesia) 10:15, 21 October 2009 (UTC)Reply

One could send adolescent editors (only OpenID-identified pupils) to edit pages in their exact age group. This way Wikipedia would have articles written by pupils aged 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 and 18. --Fasten (Wikinews: Aktion Deutschland Hilft asks for donations after the earthquake in Indonesia) 10:20, 21 October 2009 (UTC)Reply
One could also delete articles after five to ten years, which would provide an artificial motivation for article writing by adolescents. Few adolescents would be concerned to lose their work after what for an adolescent appears to be "an eternity". --Fasten (Wikinews: Aktion Deutschland Hilft asks for donations after the earthquake in Indonesia) 10:24, 21 October 2009 (UTC)Reply
Older articles could also turn yellow, use a font that looks like handwriting and begin to show signs of bit rot. An older document would then look more like a PDF made from an ancient document from previous centuries (which would be quite accurate, given the perspective of young children that 10 years ago is "like an eternity") --Fasten 20:22, 3 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
See also: Proposal talk:Wikimedia TV#Automatic video rendering --Fasten (Wikinews: Aktion Deutschland Hilft asks for donations after the earthquake in Indonesia) 13:06, 21 October 2009 (UTC)Reply

We need a filtered adult wikipedia - not rewritten / colourful / cartoon based pages

I'm a parent of two kids under 4, and really see the need for a filtered version of ordinary wikipedia. My kids use a touch-screen in the living room to explore sites like kids.nationalgeographic (which has a really good library of videos of animals). They also have a lot of interest in space/rockets, and wikipedia is a great tool to help me explain stuff for them.

Over time I would like for them to search wikipedia by themselves whenever they're interested in something, but as of now I need to supervise whenever they use it to avoid disturbing images (and text when the time comes). What my boys need is not a colourful animated page - but to access the same wikipedia as we adults do but with adult content filtered out.

It is my belief that the same wiki article can be useful for kids, adolescents and adults at the same time, as long as the information is well layered (photos/drawings, simple abstract, followed by detail).

"If you can't explain it to a six year old, you probably don't understand it that well". --Aravn 13:33, 28 November 2009 (UTC)Reply

Have you tried ? (The quote from Richard Feynman could be interpreted to mean that six-year olds understand anything (whether it's true or not), as long as it makes at least some sense. It doesn't mean six-year olds should try to read Wikipedia.) And please specify from which planet you are if your children are under 4 (years?) and can read Wikipedia. --Fasten 13:53, 28 November 2009 (UTC)Reply