Project Groundhog is a project designed to introduce young learners to the possibilities of telecommunications technology through a meaningful, curriculum based inquiry. Project Groundhog engages students in exploring whether or not the groundhog is an accurate weather predictor. For the six weeks following Groundhog Day, February 2nd, students monitor and record the daily temperature and sky conditions. Students also record how often school was closed due to weather. The information collected is shared weekly with the participating schools via email and the Project Groundhog website.
Project Groundhog has a direct curriculum focus. It allows teachers to cover specific objectives in:
The telecommunications aspect of Project Groundhog is essential to the sharing of data and ideas. Without the STELLAR schools connection the school would be unable to participate in this project.
Other resources used may include library books, reference material, science equipment to observe specific weather phenomena and other materials available within the school and community. The range of other resources possible is limited only by the teachers imagination.
Project Groundhog is an ongoing project. The effectiveness of the project has been shown through the growth of participation in Project Groundhog over the past 3 years.
Student achievement in Project Groundhog will be evaluated by informal discussion with the students throughout the course of the project and by examining folders of work kept specifically for Project Groundhog.