Cyberfair Project ID: 6958

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: Literacy 4 Life
Category: 2. Community Groups and Special Populations
URL: http://www.wix.com/ngeck2002/literacy-4
Bibliography: http://www.wix.com/ngeck2002/literacy-4

School: Our Lady Queen of Apostles
    Center Moriches, New York, USA

17 students, ages ages 12-13 worked together to complete this Cyberfair project on March 13, 2012. They have participated in Cyberfair in the following year(s): 2012

Classes and Teachers: Mrs.Gecker, Ms.Cunningham and 7th grade class

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site: http://www.olqany.org

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Community

Our community is a suburban area out on the east end of Long Island. We are surrounded by water including the Center Moriches inlet, Forge River, and the Smith Point Beach. Teachers and volunteers all work together to improve our community by teaching a literacy program. We bring together our knowledge and sincerity towards the immigrants that have moved into our area and local Long Islanders who have literary problems. Our community includes the towns of Center Moriches, Shirley, Mastic, and Mastic Beach. Our focal point is centered on the literacy program at the Mastic-Moriches-Shirley Community Library in our town. We have interviewed some people involved in the literacy program, and we urge you to take part in this worldwide dilemma. “Literacy problems start at home,” said Mrs. Donovan, a literacy coordinator, from the Mastic-Moriches-Shirley Community Library. Mrs. Donovan states that children are like sponges and will absorb the English language if spoken to and read to at home; therefore, they will do better in school and in life. Literacy programs are used to teach people how to speak, read, and write in English Our perspective starts with a dream and a dream can change the world. By being literate we can unite people. In the 1600’s being literate was being able to write your signature. Later on, a simple sentence was adequate to be able to read. Today adults need enough skills to raise children to be good students, to get a job, to ensure that their families are in good health, and to take part in their communities. If we all take part in helping people to read and write, we can change the world.

2. Summary of Our Project

Literacy plays a major factor in our daily lives; we see it when we drive, when we go shopping and even when some one applies for a job. It might be hard to believe but 14% of people who live in Suffolk County are functionally illiterate. Imagine living a daily life where you don’t understand a word or where you can’t read a sign? Wouldn’t you be frustrated and embarrassed? We want all people to be able to learn our language, to be able to read and write in English, and to be successful. Here at Our Lady Queen of Apostles School, our 7th grade class of seventeen students is going to try to improve this dilemma. We have traveled to our local library, MMS Community Library, we have done hours of research, and with minimal help from our teachers we have created a website informing the public of how we can help others feel truly at home in our magnificent country. It is finally time to bring this problem into the light!

3. Our Computer and Internet Access

A. Percentage of students using the Internet at home:more than 50%

B. Number of workstations with Internet access in the classroom:more than 6

C. Connection speed used in the classroom:dedicated connection

D. Number of years our classroom has been connected to the Internet:more than 6

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

Computers are old and sometimes didn't work. We could only work around class schedules and could not work after school because of bus transportation.

5. Our Project Sound Bite

We learned that more immigrants are moving into our community, and we need more literacy programs. We also learned how to get the word out through the use of the Internet and projects we did.

6. How did your activities and research for this Cyberfair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?

The project covered NYS standards in ELA, Math, Art and Technology. We used reading and writing skills to research and write information for the website and the interviews. We also learned how to use Wix to create a web design, and we created graphs that helped us with our math skills. The math was used to figure the placement of objects. We used our own art to create our logo. By doing this project we found out more about our community through our local library. We realized our library has a lot to offer. We think this project helped us understand our community better and we were proud to spread the word about literacy needs.

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Project Elements

1) What information tools & technologies did you used to complete your Cyberfair project?

We used multiple tools in our project including 2 cameras, 24 desktop computers, 1 SMART Board, the library, sitting in at a literacy class, and a picture scanner that we used to incorperate our logo into the website. These are the tools we used in our project. We did not have any donated tools, and some of our computers are old. Our most important tools were the SMART Board and the desktop computers.

2) In what ways did you act as "ambassadors" and spokespersons for your Cyberfair project both on-line and in person.

Our Cyberfair Project will be on the Internet and on our school website. Other students went to various stores in their community and put up posters for our school book drive. We sorted books from nursery to adult for our book drive that reached many people. People receiving the books were very excited. Some of the students in the class visited the Mastic-Moriches-Shirley Community Library to speak with teachers, volunteers and students and take videos of the Literacy Program. These videos were posted on youtube.com. Other students went to various stores in our community and put up posters for our school book drive. We sorted books from nursery to adult for our book drive that reached many people. People receiving the books were very excited. We also wrote stories for the children in the literacy class at the library using an Internet program. Throughout the project we contacted the literacy coordinator by email and telephone to spread the word. We also were happy to publicize the 5K Run, a fund raiser for the literacy program.

3) What has been the impact of your project on your community?

Yes, we think our project will make a big difference because people don't notice that illiteracy is a big problem. From the inability to buy milk to not being able to read a stop sign really puts our economy at stake. We really don't realize that these people are unable to get jobs and are unable to make money to support their families and contribute to our community unless we help them learn to read, write and speak English.

4) How did your project involve other members of your community as helpers and volunteers?

Our project involved Mrs. Donovan, a literacy coordinator at the Mastic Moriches Shirley library. We also interviewed a few men and women from a literacy class. Our website shows all of the different ways to explore the involvement to educating illiterate people. Volunteers are constantly becoming involved at the library and through the community library it can grow to help many people.

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View our Cyberfair Project (Project ID: 6958)

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