1. Description of Our Team
Our veteran member, Meredith, 16, wants to be either an engineer or a singer. She enjoyed working on last year's project about Kashmir as webmaster, and she wanted to do another one. We invited three freshwomen to join us. While Meredith designed our website and did an interview, Katie, Bridget, and Kelly researched the diseases and organizations, conducted interviews, and helped with the many details on the project. Bridget, 15, who designed the fundraising label, runs cross-country and enjoys listening to Jet and Greenday. Katie, 14, used her love of biology to motivate us; she enjoys swimming and rowing. Kelly, 14, who loves volunteering with kids and wants to be a pediatric nurse, enjoys writing, all kinds of music, and animals. Both coaches were encouraging and helped us brainstorm ideas and solutions. Ms. Jacqueline Konwinski, Social Studies teacher, organized our meetings, worked on publicity, synthesized the project narrative, and assisted with editing. Mrs. Judith Miller, parent volunteer, assisted us in getting permission to use the music, checked out the legal use of photographs, helped us make contacts for interviews, and worked with Meredith while she learned the new software. Mrs. Miller kept us going with snacks, especially her homemade brownies. We all were challenged by the project, and we are glad that we got to know each other better.
2. Summary of Our Project
Millions of children die unnecessarily each year simply because they do not receive vaccinations for common diseases. Vaccinations for Nations examines the causes, transmission, symptoms, treatments, and vaccines for seven childhood diseases around the world. The project concludes by highlighting people and organizations that help the world's children and by inviting students to offer their hands in helping children.
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:1
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):
Our school has 25 Dell computers with Windows XP in the library, 24 more Dell computers in the lab, 24 computers in the technology classroom, and one computer in each classroom. All have Internet access. A Director of Technology, a Network Technician and Microsoft Professional Trainer, and a business education/computer teacher coordinate the Technology Department. We all have a computer at home with Internet access
4. Problems We Had To Overcome
We all had the problem of contacting people, especially doctors, and scheduling interviews with them because they are busy people. We worked around their schedules and made sure the interviews were brief. Katie and Bridget conducted an interview at 7 a.m. because that was the only time available. After numerous attempts to contact some people, we gave up because we only had so much time.
Another problem was gathering all the information and then, making it brief and understandable. We just tried harder, and we helped each other. It took a lot of effort to get the rights to the songs. Mrs. Miller just never gave up. Meredith's biggest problem was learning the Flash software because it took so much concentration and time. The answer was patience, persistence, organization, and preparation. Meredith found completing all of the Flash projects, especially the intro, gave her a tremedous sense of accomplishment.
5. Our Project Sound Bite
We are all honored to use our talents and skills to work on Vaccinations for Nations because it forced us to learn about the frustrating and preventable problems of childhood diseases worldwide. We are grateful that we live in a country that has effective programs for vaccinations and that we can help children around the world with our project.
6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?
Vaccinations for Nations meets Ohio benchmarks for Life Science Standards for grades 9 through 12. These are for Grades 9 & 10: 'summarize the historical development of scientific theories and ideas and describe emerging issues in the study of life sciences, explain that living cells are different from viruses, and describe advances in life sciences that have important long-lasting effects on science and society.' For Grades 11 & 12, they are 'explain how human choices today will affect the quality and quantity of life on earth, examine the contributing factors of human population growth that impact natural systems . . . , describe advances in life sciences that have important long-lasting effects on science and society.' Our school science curriculum is aligned with these standards.
We practiced brainstorming, planning, and designing our website together; we used research and writing skills along with critical thinking skills. We improved our research skills on the Internet. We encouraged each other and helped each other with problems. As friends, we have had good times together; now, we know that we can work hard together. While we did this on our own time, we know that it will be appreciated at our school.