CyberFair Project ID: 2352

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: Australian Community Leaders
Category: 1. Local Leaders
Bibliography: No bibliography page cited

School: Anderson's Creek Promary School
    Warrandyte, Victoria, Australia

280 students, ages 6-10years worked together to complete this CyberFair project on March 21, 2003. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 1996,1997,1998,1999,2000,

Classes and Teachers: Elaine Robertson Grade 2, Di Phillips 2, Luanda Pianta 2, Alison Duck 1, Christine Schiller 1, Wendy Sharp 1.

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site:

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Community

Our Community, Warrandyte is a great place in which to live. Warrandyte is a suburb of the city of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. It is a small township of 12,000 people living around the Yarra River on the north eastern outskirts of Melbourne. Originally settled as a pastoral district, the population grew when gold was discovered in the 1850's. Because of the town's history and relative isolation from the suburbs of Melbourne, the people of Warrandyte are a very 'close' community. Our Community is also our wider community of Melbourne, Victoria and Australia. It consists of many inspirational leaders, lots of different people and groups that give us information, help us and give us guidance, take us on tours and help us to look after our natural surroundings. Our Community is our native animals, our State Parks, Rivers, mountains and the many special features and attractions that we have. In our Community we also have wonderful festivals and celebrations.

2. Summary of Our Project

We are studying "Australia, Leaders in our Community" as our integrated topic in first term which covers part of the Study of Society and Environment Curriculum and groups of students from each class researched information about an important person in our local and broader community and the contributions these people have made. The Grade one and two classes looked at important leaders in our immediate community. The Grade three and four classes looked at leaders of our wider community, both in Melbourne, Victoria and throughout Australia. We went on excursions to Warrandyte and Melbourne where we gathered information about many leaders. We took photos and videos and interviewed people. We have produced a web project with many scanned graphics and photos. We added some great videos to some of our web pages. Some of these videos were taken with our digital camera and others had to be captured and compressed then linked to our web pages. These are to be viewed on Real Player. We also focused on report writing in English and writing speeches for our CyberFair Launch. We also increased our research skills using books, the internet and went on visits to museums and listened to many important community leaders when they visited our school or we visited them. Some of us emailed people and interviewed them by asking them many questions.

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:2-3

C. Connection speed used in the classroom:dedicated connection

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

E. Additional comments concerning your computer and/or Internet access (Optional):

We have 3 computer laboratories with 16 Computers and data projectors to share skills and completed projects. In all the classrooms we have mini computer labs. All computers in the school are networked to the Internet and Intranet. Every classroom has their own Internet address and Email is sent and received regularly from around the world. We have an ISDN link to the Internet.

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

Our biggest problem was that we are building a new school. Many classrooms didn’t have the internet/intranet/network access that they usually do which made it extremely difficult to build our web project on the Intranet before we uploaded it to the Internet. At the beginning of the year we only had one fully operational Computer Lab (with 450 students trying to use it!) and it wasn’t until the beginning of March that all grades involved had some access to other Laboratories and the Intranet when the Cabling specialists came and “hooked” up our computer network. Hence the timeline this year was very difficult for us. Our other biggest problem this year was trying to get photos of our leaders that were copyright free. Many leaders were emailed to obtain permission, but unfortunately we weren’t able to use some of their photos. We did try our hardest though to obtain photos of all these wonderful people.

5. Our Project Sound Bite

It was a great project. Everyone in the school both teachers and children "educated, shared and united" to produce this outstanding project about our community. We had visitors to our school and also visited places where we met people and learnt all about their jobs and how they help us. It is so exciting looking at our web pages taking shape, particularly when we added scanned graphics, audio sounds and video to some of the pages. It is a great way to show our community off to the rest of the world. We made constant use of our data projectors to share our work and to demonstrate skills we had learnt. We love launching our Project to the School Community at night when we all make a speech and show off our wonderful project using a data projector in our Multi Purpose room. We will "Educate and Unite" our project with parents, friends and relatives in Warrandyte and have a Grand Celebration.

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

This project was integrated into our curriculum area, Studies of Society and the Environment, where we were developing an understanding of Leaders of our Local and Wider Community. It also gave us an excellent insight into sharing information around the World Wide Web and how to develop a Web page and send Email, which is a part of the subject Information Technology. We would like this project to become a sharing with other children around the world, by people contacting us via our email address, after enjoying our Project. We learnt lots more about making Web pages and we look forward to making even more. We learnt how to scan graphics in Photo DrawV2 and Photo Impact and then sharpen and compress them. We also enjoyed talking with many people in our community and visiting places, which were important to the leaders. We visited artist's studios, Latrobe's cottage, The Shrine which is a war memorial in the centre of Melbourne and Government House. We really liked learning about Australia and finding out about so many wonderful leaders, both current and historical leaders and the contributions and impact these leaders have made to the Australian community. In English we focussed on researching skills, writing reports and speeches and in Maths we did lots of work about maps. Working on Internet Projects is a fantastic way of collaborating with people around the world and opens up the walls of our classroom to the world.

Project Elements

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

We used many computers throughout the school. We used telephones to conduct interviews, tape recorders to record sound, video cameras to make videos and scanners to scan images. We used our digital camera, which made it easier to compress images without having to scan first, and also we started to make short videos on our Sony Mavica digital camera. You can see some of these on the Warrandyte Leader’s pages. "Experts" (children) learnt how to capture video. They are now keen to continue work with Video capturing and train others. We purchased Real Video to compress and then play our videos. We hope that you are able to download Real Player to watch our great videos too. You can see some of the videos on the following pages, in the Warrandyte Leaders and on the Home Page, where it shows you some of the important buildings around Melbourne and where some of our leaders have visited, performed or statues are found. Data show projectors were used to share information and teach skills. Computer software programs included FrontPage, to publish our web pages, Photo Draw V2 and Photo Impact to scan and make modifications to our graphics and compress and resize graphics. We became expert scanners and compressors of images. We used Dreamweaver and Adobe Photo Shop to produce the Home Page. We found information in libraries, museums, books, CD-ROMs, which included Encarta, and pamphlets. Many Internet Web Sites were used to research information. You can view all the sites in the Bibliography.

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

We contacted many people in our community when we were researching for information about our leaders. Many children visited the important places, museums, galleries and studios that had an important connection with the leader whom we were researching. The Grade 1 and 2 went on excursions to visit their local leaders and all the leaders we chose visited our school to speak to them. It became obvious how the leaders chosen value and support us in our learning. They have taught us many things and guided us too. Emails were written to many leaders asking questions and also seeking permission to use photos on the web page. We invited all our parents to the school, for a World Wide Page Launch Night to be part of this exciting project, to view and listen to what we've been doing. We had an Open Night where we showed people what we have done with this project. We had hundreds of people from our community at this great event. It was very exciting to feel so important. Every group presented their web page, the impact the leader had had on each person and also explained how they went about making it. Here is the speech that started off the night: "Ladies and Gentlemen, boys and girls. Thank you for coming tonight to the Launch of our Internet Project, Leaders of our Australian Community. The children in Grades 1 to 4 have created the Web project to be entered in the International CyberFair for 2001. The aim of this project is to "Educate and Unite" schools and communities around the world. Many schools from around the world are taking part in the wonderful project. We would like to show you each part of the project and the different groups will speak about their part in this project." We have been great ambassadors in our community.

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

This project has helped to educate and unite our school with us all contributing our own part to the web site. The junior classes have worked on class pages and have felt very important to be part of something that the older children are involved in. It has also increased the awareness of how we can use our Intranet to publish our work electronically to share with others. People will learn about all the local leaders, the contributions they have made to our society, which they may not have known before. We think that through articles in the local newspapers, people will be very interested to view our Web page and see what great leaders we have in our community and how others around the world will be able to read the wealth of information that this project contains. This project has done wonderful things to show what school children are able to do and how we have people within our local community who can help us in achieving such a great project. Newspaper reports are a great way for us to be ambassadors. Some of our teachers are also speaking about this Project at a Computer conference in May and July, which will show case our Project to other teachers. It will give other teachers ideas about how to include the CyberFair into their curriculum. Many schools not only around Victoria, but also around Australia and the World will be interested to look at our project.

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

The International CyberFair entry involved many people in our community sharing their knowledge and expertise. Mr. Doug Robb, one of our children's father, assisted us with some of the more detailed graphics and with Java scripting for our navigation tools on each page. Another parent made us aware of an excellent software program Copernic, which enabled children to search on the internet successfully and find excellent sites. This program can be downloaded free from the internet and it is great for children to find excellent sites in specific countries. In their own time many parents took children to the subject of their investigation to acquire information and to take video or photos. Volunteers gave up their time to speak to groups. Some of these included, The Warrandyte Police, the CFA, the SES, the John Boyle the Warrandyte Festival Organiser, Jock McNeish, a local artist, our Principal, the guides at Parliament House, Latrobe’s Cottage and The Shrine many of our parents accompanied us on excursions to visit museums, buildings and other features of our community where leaders were. We also had lots of our parents help our teachers in the classroom. We really involved all our parents at the Launch of our CyberFair where we all celebrated together the completion of our huge Internet project. Many children wrote letters and emails to their leaders and received information for their projects.

5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)

We thought all the videos were fantastic and we really enjoyed capturing these, making them MPEG and then compressing them into a Real Player format. You see these videos on lots of our web pages. We were really surprised at the influence many of these leaders have already had on our lives, the many lessons we have learnt from them and how they care for our community and make it such a safe place in which to live. At the end of the project the really good part was looking at everyone else's fantastic pages of the project and learning lots more about our wonderful Leaders. We would like to meet many more of our leaders who have been so much of an inspiration to us and we hope that children and people around the world enjoy reading about, looking at, listening too and seeing these wonderful people. One of our biggest surprises was that we were able to complete this huge project in 5 weeks with our school being rebuilt, our classrooms having to be moved and computers throughout the school not being as easy to access because of demolition and rebuilding.


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 2352)

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