Project 2: Global Connection
Currently, Global Issues is being taught with the aid of magazines that are usually a week or two outdated upon arrival. With the intent to expose the students to world happenings as they occur, through the use of online resources, such as CNN, and NBC, they will receive information as it happens. Students will then be able to get a better perspective on global events.
Global Issues 3205
Science and Technology 2206
The project also addresses the intended outcomes for technology education at the senior high level. These include:
The nature of this course lends itself to up to date information. Since this is not a history course and since there is no prescribed text, it is necessary to look elsewhere for current information. Our library is not current enough to be of much use to this type of research. Therefore it was necessary, not simply for the stellar school project but simply as a "real component" of the course, for us to search for current information on the units covered this year. The Internet therefore was a matter of survival if we were to cover the course as I believe it was designed to be covered.
In this project the students had to research current information on a topic of their choice dealing with the environment. The unit being covered at the time was, of course, The Environment. Among some topics covered were; Acid Rain, Ocean Pollution, Air Pollution, Conservation, Global Warming, Ozone Depletion and so on. These are topics that need the latest and most up to date information possible since technology and research are bringing new information to light almost daily.
The assignment was set such that all students had to get used to using the Internet. This was a valuable learning experience for some who had not yet tried this new form of information access. For some it was nothing new. However, since the age we are entering is an information driven society where teaching people everything is impossible, we are wiser putting our energies where we are teaching all students how to find information rather than trying to teach them all the information they will ever need. This would be an impossible task given the rate at which new information is becoming available and the amount of information already out there.
The biggest problem we have to overcome now is the speed at which we access this information. Students get frustrated when the computer is slow or the Internet is experiencing trouble and many sites cannot be accessed. Our network seems to have incompatibilities that cause some down time that further aggravates the problem of frustrations.
The value in this project lies in the fact that many students got a taste of this invaluable tool for the first time and were turned on to this new source of information. For others it may take a little more convincing to overcome their fears about this new technology. This is the major reason why we need the continued access to this form of collecting information since this is the way of the future!
For a number of students it was the first time, to my knowledge, they had used a word processor to complete an assignment, let alone use the Internet to gain the information. I also found that by using the Internet some students enjoyed collecting and printing information. Most students had amassed an enormous amount of information, much more than they would have taken the trouble to collect from the library even if it were there to be found.
It is my firm belief that Internet access for our students is as important to the proper development of our students' skills as the teachers themselves. It would be ludicrous to think any school could be without Internet access for its students.