Project 1 -- LINC-Net

Logo General Information
Project Overview
Curriculum Connections
Resource Connections
Evaluation

  General Information

Lead teachers:

Daphne LillyLearning Resources Teacher
dalilly@calvin.stemnet.nf.ca
Elizabeth NoseworthyESL Teacher
enosewor@calvin.stemnet.nf.ca

School:

MacDonald Drive Elementary
150 MacDonald Drive
St. John's, NF A1A 2K9
753-6020

Grade Level: ESL students in Pods 1-6

Number of students involved: 50-60

Project Start and Finish Dates: March /96 - June /96

  Project Overview

MacDonald Drive Elementary School's student population represents more than 23 birth countries and 22 first languages. The map below illustrates the breadth of their global connections.

map

There are currently 50-60 immigrant children at our school. Some of them have limited English skills and require ESL training while others are capable of working in a regular classroom without assistance.

The English as a Second Language Program (ESL) is a support service offered by our School Board. Our school currently has a full-time ESL teacher.

Goals:

1. To create an opportunity for those students who are newly arrived in Canada to share their perceptions with other immigrant students in various areas of Canada.

2. To link our students with schools in their home country which can provide for them a familiar source of interests/customs/expressions while at the same time creating a "window" on Canada for those back home.

3. To develop a literacy in English through correspondence with other students of the same background.

4. To create a database of immigrant students across Canada (and perhaps other countries) who provided support to our participants. This database can be used for followup as well as continued "keypals" for the initial group.

5. To use these contacts as a source of information on technological issues that arise from their curriculum study.

Some aspects of this project would be more appropriate for elementary students, as a certain level of literacy is required to communicate via e-mail.

  Curriculum Connections

Language Arts

Using resources online, such as SchoolNet, Web 66 and other collections of Web sites, we hope to locate schools in Canada and in the home countries with suitable respondents. It is our intention to incorporate this online communication into our regular language arts program using writing objectives appropriate to the capabilities of our students.

Social Studies

These children have experiences and cultural connections that are much broader than most of their local classmates. Their perspective can be a valuable resource in classroom explorations of world communities and cultures. As well, many have come from turbulent political areas and may find it helpful to share their memories with other refugees who have also fled their homeland.

The ESL program provides a support structure through its "buddy" program, and its emphasis on integration and socialization. It promotes pride in the immigrant students' language and culture, and encourages them to become a resource of our mainstream student population. Children often lose contact with their language/culture/country and, by building such bridges, we are increasing students' sense of empowerment. Developing their self-esteem is important for success in building English fluency (reading, writing, speaking/listening).

The Technology Education learning outcomes that are most applicable to this project are in the elementary level Communication Domain:

  • an understanding of the nature of online communications and its limitations.
  • an opportunity to identify real life communication problem situations and opportunities.
  • identify ways in which information and communications technologies are used.
  • identify advantages and disadvantages of selected communications technologies.
  • development of a vocabulary of terminology and language related to the selected communication technology.
  • employ the language and terminology when solving technological problems and when describing their solutions to others.
  • use communications technologies to build new knowledge from existing information.
  • use communications technologies to collaborate with students/teachers and others at a distance to gain understanding of problems and opportunities in production and control, in energy and power and in biotechnology.

  Resource Connections

The students who could avail of this project are distributed throughout six pods. There is restricted accessibility to the single STEM~Net computer at our school, and Internet access throughout the school would greatly facilitate the project.

We intend to purchase a Logitech 4" handheld colour scanner for the purpose of creating student photographs for Web pages.

  Evaluation

  • Our students will link with other immigrant students in Canada using online communication to share their perceptions and transition experiences.
  • Students will develop literacy in English through these communication experiences.
  • Students will make contact with students in their home country for the purpose of sharing interests and customs.
  • Students will provide a "window" on Canada for those students back in the home country.
  • Students will create a database of immigrant students across Canada.
  • Students will explore sources of information on technological issues that arise from their courses of study.

The Multicultural nature of our school both enriches and challenges us. This project can provide valuable support to our new students in their first stressful year in a new country, as well as encourage our local classmates to appreciate them as a rich source of international perspectives.

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