> Question > >How can the net be used and not abused in finding material for projects that >students will do in the future. Is this forum a good place for students to >ask for assistance or are there better places to search after the students >use local resources????
I'm not sure if this is an appropriate forum for such a discussion, however...
Here is a brief outline of a project that took place last year with some year 9 students. The topic was 'What can we learn about caring for our environment from indigenous people?. We chose about 6 groups or areas to study, and set up a mailing list for each one, as well as a general list for discussion about the project itself. The class was divided into 6 groups. We put out a call through various forums for other classes to participate. Through selected newsgroups, we also asked for mentors for each group. In the end, we had about 50 people involved, including students from Australia, New Zealand, the US, Canada and South Afica, a number of students and professors of anthropology and a sprinkling of indigenous folk.
The project called for a group of students in Rockhampton to work cooperatively with similar groups in other parts of the world. Each group would do independent research, and share the results of their research on the mailing list. The mentors would monitor the list, add information as they saw fit, suggest new lines of questioning, and correct misconceptions. A draft report would be produced, and the mentors would be asked to make comment. From that, the final polished report would emerge.
We felt that this was making excellent use of the Net, and was a project that couldn't be done using any other medium. The final outcome was mixed. The discussions were informative, and some real friendships were established, However, we had technical difficulties linking with other schools, people were busy and weren't able to answer straight away, other activities at school intervened, and we got behind schedule. In the end, the school year finished before the final reports were completed.
It was a great learning experience, though, and with reflections on our mistakes, I think we could successfully run a similar project in the future.
To put this back into a mathematical context, a similar project could be done on the history of mathematics, or Mathematics and Art, or some such. I imagine if members of this list were asked to be mentors of such a project, the response would be very positive.
Rex ***** Rex Boggs | High above the hushed crowd, firstname.lastname@example.org | Rex tried to remain focused. | Still, he couldn't shake one Glenmore High School | nagging thought: He was an Rockhampton, Quensland | old dog and this was a new Australia | trick - Gary Larson