1. Description of Our Community
Lodz, our home city, is situated in the very centre of Poland, Central Europe. It is very large, though the community is quite united. We all are strongly attached to Lodz and we feel true affection for it. For a very long time it was a great industrial centre. After some transformations it has changed its status. However, it has not changed its fascinating history, which we decided to concentrate on whilst developing this project. We generally define our local community as the citizens of Lodz. These may be people whom we know well, whom meet from time to time or even whom we have never talked to. We all like Lodz and this is what unites us. That's why we believe that this Web project would be supported and appreciated by the members of our local community.
2. Summary of Our Project
„The Manufacture – yesterday, today and tomorrow.” For many years effaced from people’s memories, neglected and deserted… now slowly reviving and creating its new image. In the past, it used to be the heart of Lodz Textile Industry which, however, stopped beating for over one hundred years. Now, it is time for the staff of Apsys company to put a lot of effort into bringing it back to life and provide it with a completely new, crucial character. They care not only for the commercial, industrial and cultural development of the city, but they also focus on rousing the memories of the colourful past of the Manufacture. In 1877 manufacturer Izrael Poznanski bought a piece of land with two houses on the corner of Ogrodowa and Zachodnia Streets. Soon, owing to Hilary Majewski’s project, it became an urban complex consisting of some other factory buildings, “family” houses, an eclectic palace and a hospital. They were alltogether the owner’s and industry’s power. During the coming years numerous redevelopments were still conducted there. Today, on the area of these historical factories and palaces, an innovative complex of the XXI century – “the chance for a better tomorrow” is coming into existence. In this way we are given many vast opportunites, starting with thousands of new job offers, through strengthening of interpersonal bonds or creating attractive places of social gatherings. This “city in a city” appears to be a separate piece of land, where life has its own rhythm, where one has an impression of being taken into another dimension… This grand enterprise is being run on the area of 27 ha. As a result, hundreds of shops, numerous restaurants or cafes amusement arcades and a multiplex cinema will be opened. It is a universal project directed at whole families so everybody will be able to find there something for themselves. “Yesterday” Lodz as an active, industrial city – a cotton empire, later put to sleep, “today” is coming to life in great style so that “tomorrow” it can become the city of a new generation.
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
The greatest problem we had to overcome was the lack of time. We have had a lot of work at school recently and we didn't have enough time to constantly improve our project. Moreover, we found it quite hard to organise the group work. Besides, we have also faced with the linguistic difficulties. Not many students have the sufficient knowledge of English to write texts confidently and fluently. Fortunately, we have found several helpers, who offered to perform the neccessary corrections and therefore saved us a lot of time. Finally, it has brought us a lot of problems to put all the information together. Many students had been writing some texts on their own and sometimes it was hard to link and organize all Web pages. However, we have finally dealt with all our problems and we think that the project is worth of a glance.
5. Our Project Sound Bite
'Times keep changing, and we keep changig together with them'
6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?
As it happens, all the schools in our country generally follow the same curriculum guidelines. For this reason, students from Lodz do not actually have the opportunity to learn many interesting facts specifically regarding the region they live in. That is why we deem the CyberFair competition to be a great chance to better interact with our community. While developing our project, we have given ourselves a great lesson about another nation within our community. Since we have covered the subject of the Jewish presence in Lodz over several centuries, this project was a great supplement to our knowledge of our home city. We have acquired a broader view on some matters. This has made us feel enriched in some way.
However, this was not the only way we have benefited from our participation in the CyberFair. The organisation of the group work was a valuable experience. We found it very difficult and it brought us a lot of problems. Nonetheless, we have managed to cope with it and put all the material together in an ordered way. But before this happened, we had had to learn how to share and publish materials in the Internet, how to request information on a specific subject, how to join ideas to form a whole - united and logical - and many other skills. These are probably the greatest benefits from the CyberFair competition.
We have also made some discoveries. One of them is the backwardness of our educational system. The power of the Internet has not been appreciated yet, the curriculum guidelines do not contain 'local subjects', students are supposed to learn meaningless facts instead of important skills, and schools do not take advantage of public facilities such as museums, libraries, theatres, etc. For this reason, the CyberFair competition has a great meaning to us. Not only does it support our curriculum requirements, but it also surpasses them and brings us new skills and experiences, and new methods of learning. This is undoubtedly a great initiative.