CyberFair Project ID: 4947

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: Wondrous Wyandotte Caves
Category: 5. Local Attractions (Natural and Man-Made)

School: Cannelton Elementary School
    Cannelton, Indiana, United States

15 students, ages 8-11 worked together to complete this CyberFair project on March 5, 2007. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 1998, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006

Classes and Teachers: Mrs. Goble - Cannelton Elementary Media Club

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site:

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Community

Cannelton is a small and very historical town located on the banks of the Ohio River in southern Indiana. It has a rich heritage which dates back to 1837 with the founding of the American Cannel Coal Company. It now has about 2000 residents, many of whom have lived here all of their lives. Cannelton has seen many hardships and many triumphs throughout the years yet it is still going strong. Cannelton residents want to keep our town alive and prosperous, as well as preserve its heritage.

2. Summary of Our Project

Our project, Wondrous Wyandotte Caves, was created in order to inform people of the importance of not just Wyandotte Caves, but all caves, and their inhabitants,escpecially bats. We tell all about Wyandotte Caves, including its wonders like its formations and of course the bats! We want the world to know that caves and bats are important for our world, We believe we all have the power to take care of the caves so that they may continue to forever exist as a safe home for wildlife and a beautiful sight to see for visitors for generations to come.

3. Our Computer and Internet Access

A. Percentage of students using the Internet at home:21-50%

B. Number of workstations with Internet access in the classroom:none

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):

At our school we have a T1 line to the Internet. In our classroom we have five computers connected to the Internet. We have had internet access at our school for eight years now. About 50% of our students have Internet access at home.

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

We had very few problems with this project. The only one to mention would be finding the time to complete it at school. We worked it out by coming in during recesses to the media room and also staying after school. Also, a lot of our research was done on our own by visiting our local library. We were able to overcome not being able to interview some of our experts in person by doing e-mail interviews. This worked out well!

5. Our Project Sound Bite

We have participated in Cyberfair now for several years, gaining from it a sense of purpose and empowerment that no other project has offered to us. We feel that our work on this year's project, 'Wondrous Wyandotte Caves' is important and will have a positive impact for the caves because it will help to inform people not only of why the caves are important but also what we all can do to preserve them. Our great thanks goes to International Schools Cyberfair for giving the opportunity to do this!

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

Working on this project allowed our students to learn about cave ecosystems and how important they are to the Earth as a whole. This meets several educational standards in science. Creating the website itself met our language arts standards and also gave the students skills in working with word processing, webpage building, researching on the Internet, graphing, photograph editing, and allowed them to use their creative skills in design. They learned to work collaboratively in a team setting. These lifelong skills will help them in future endeavors. This project has given the students a sense of purpose and accomplishment because they know when people visit their website and learn about Wyandotte Caves they will want to visit them and will want to help take care of them. The students know this is helping to preserve a beautiful part of nature in Indiana. Soon the students will be presenting this project to their school board as well as to other students across the state at the Indiana State Media Festival. This will give them a chance to strengthen their speaking skills as well as give them the chance to promote their project even more.

Project Elements

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

The informational and technological tools used in creating this project were: books on caves and bats from our local Cannelton Public Library, five online computers, two digital cameras, tape recorder and e-mail for the interviews of our cave experts, scanner to scan our drawings. Software used includes Microsoft Image Composer, Microsoft Front Page 2003, Microsoft Works and Microsoft Word. We were very happy to have the support and assistance of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and also Bat Conservation International. IDNR gave us access to the caves during the non-tour season and also to many photographs of the caves and bats. IDNR also allowed us to use files from a special tool called an Anabat, which records bat calls. Four Anabat sound files were used on our site along with the sound graphs. Bat Conservation International allowed us free use of photographs of the bats we feature on this site.

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

Our students have already acted as ambassadors for our Cyberfair project in several ways. They have been featured in our local newspaper in an article that told of their research of Wyandotte Caves and what they hoped to accomplish with it. (Perry County News of Perry County, Indiana October 2006 issue.) The students worked closely with several cave and bat experts such as Dr. Clark McCreedy, a wildlife biologist of the Hoosier National Forest, and Bob Sawtelle, Manager of Wyandotte Caves for the Indiana Department of Natural Resources. Besides having it entered here in Cyberfair they have entered this project in the Indiana State Media Festival which will get it statewide attention and soon will enter it in the International Student Media Festival which will give it even more attention. The students will be presenting this project to our school board at the April meeting as well.

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

We are sure that our project will have a positive impact for Wyandotte Caves and its inhabitants because it will make people more aware of the plight of the bats and other cave creatures and also of how delicate cave ecosystems are and why we should preserve them. We have gotten many positive comments from our school and community about our work on this project since it was featured in our local newspaper and we know that this will help get the word out about the importance of Wyandotte Caves and other caves in our environment. We believe too that the information we give about bats will help people to better understand that bats are important in many ways in the balance of nature and we should help them to survive.

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

We had many volunteer experts help us out! We listed them all on our references/resources page, but we do want to mention here that we are grateful for the support and assistance we received from our four featured experts: Dr. Clark McCreedy, Bob Sawtelle, Barbara French, and Cynthia Sandeno. All of these and many more assited us in any way they could, whether it be with helping us locate photographs of bats or cave formations, taking us on tours of the caves, giving us access to data or sound files, and so much more. We have been very fortunate too that we have had so much support from our school and parents. Without their support we could not have accomplished this project.

5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)

We feel one of the most important lessons we have learned is that we can all make a difference when it comes to our environment. We believe strongly that our project will teach people the importance of caves and bats and that it will help both of these to continue. We are excited that our project is in Cyberfair and we believe it fits the theme of Empower and Unite very well. Everyone can do their part to preserve cave ecosystems, and our project helps people know how they can help. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to share it with the world.


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 4947)

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