Project 3: Project Olympics
During this project each class is assigned a specific country that is participating in the Olympics. The class does a study of the country including the geography, culture and history of the country. They produce a flag of the country, a banner to represent the country and study the biographies of the athletes that are representing that country. The students then represent the country during the schools Mini Olympics. The school holds a celebration of the games complete with the opening ceremonies, cultural displays from each class, competitions and closing ceremonies. This is already an annual event at the school and would be greatly enhanced by access to the Internet.
This project meets curriculum objectives in various areas including Physical Education, Social Studies, Language Arts, Mathematics and Technology Education. It is intended to help students develop an understanding of self and others in a global arena. It is hoped that it will help students develop creative and critical thinking skills. They will learn how to exchange ideas and opinions with other participants and hopefully with international contacts that are established through the World Wide Web.
In Physical Education there are six learning outcomes which have been identified for this project. It is hoped that this project will
Students will learn map skills necessary to locate their country on the world map. In more advanced grades they will learn such concepts as longitude, latitude, hemispheres and continents. Students will study the cultural differences between Newfoundland and their assigned country. They will study the various landforms of that country as well as the climate. Depending on the grade level they may also be investigating the economy, the government, industries, religions and famous people of the country.
Through a variety of activities which will be conducted at different grade levels students will take part in several different mathematically based assignments. Some of the objectives covered are in the following areas: problem solving, statistics, distance measurement, time lines, number sense and probability.
This project addresses all four of the components of the Language Arts programme - reading, writing, speaking and listening. Students will use the Internet to explore and read about their assigned country. They will produce a written report on the country and present this report verbally.
The General Curriculum Outcomes for Technology Education are widely addressed in this project. As part of their study of various countries students will develop an understanding of modern technology as well as the ability to use basic communication tools and systems to obtain the information that they need. They will develop the necessary skills to understand the principles of encoding/decoding; transmitting/receiving and storing/retrieving data using the latest computer technology.
One of the major ways that sports events such as the Olympics make information available to interested parties is through the World Wide Web. Without an Internet connection students will not be able to avail themselves of valuable insight into the planning and preparation that countries make to attend such an historic event. As a tool for exploring the most up-to-date information and statistics the Internet is unsurpassed. Through the Internet students will actually be able to communicate with athletes and organizers of the Olympics.
As well as research through the Web, students will use print material to obtain information. With the assistance of parent volunteers and teachers they will produce flags and banners representing their country. There will be athletes representing the various Olympic sports visiting the school and students will view television coverage of the various events that are taking place during the Olympics.
Student evaluation during this project should be accomplished without destroying the chance to achieve the long term objectives of Physical Education - the creation of an active and physically fit adult population. Evaluation of this type of project must encourage continued participation in a programme of active living. All students continually improve at a personal level therefore evaluation of the Physical Education learning outcomes will be subjective evaluation through positive observations.
The learning outcomes for other curriculum areas will be evaluated by individual classroom teachers. Each of the areas will have specific skills and learning outcomes which will be dependant on the grade level of the student. Teachers will not only evaluate the written components of this project but will be monitoring students abilities to work in groups cooperatively. The sense of how an individual can play a role as a member of a cohesive team is an important aspect of this project. The awareness by students of the global nature of our world is also an important outcome of this project.