1. Description of Our Community
We represent interests and pride of the whole Ferghana Valley community - Rishtan ceramics. We have concentrated on the area of ancient ceramic Arts that is important for us and for the future generations. We have closely worked with local community of ceramists; the most part of population of Rishtan village (Ferghana region).Rishtan's population is about 24 thousand people. It is a nice place in the southern part of Ferghana valley,surrounded with snow topped mountains. Rishtan people are famous for the ceramics from the ancient times in Central Asia. People from surrounding areas come to buy pots, plates, teapots, cups, and other products from the masters. Majority of people living in Rishtan work in the ceramics plant, but they also work in their gardens because the whole Uzbekistan is agricultural country. About 80% of the population is Uzbeks. There lives tadjiks, Koreans, Kazakhs, tatar, Russian and other nationalities as well. Also we have involved many people who live in Ferghana Region and love it so much!
2. Summary of Our Project
Very old and traditional Falk Art ceramics from Rishtan town (Ferghana Region) is known in many countries of the world, it makes people closer independently from their nationality or place of living. The project demonstrates the role of ceramics in the modern world today and the future life of Uzbekistan, its culture and economy. It shows how Folk Rishtan ceramics influences the relationships among Uzbekistan and other countries, how it helps people and countries to learn and understand each other better. Together with Folk Art we can make the world around us better. Unfortunately, not very many nations, people know about the history of Rishtan Ceramics, its influence in the economy of Uzbekistan or in the Rishtan area. Through this project we wanted to empower the great art works of people that work in the Rishtan Ceramics plant. We hope that other ceramic plants would be interested in learning Rishtan master’s wonderful artwork and get connected to the masters. We also hope that Rishtan masters will be able to find partners from around the world to sell their products and they will be united to save the world with their beautiful artworks. Let’s make a difference in the world!
3. Our Computer and Internet Access
A. Percentage of students using the Internet at home:less than 20
B. Number of workstations with Internet access in the classroom:more than 6
C. Connection speed used in the classroom:dial-up modem
D. Number of years our classroom has been connected to the Internet:2-3
E. Additional comments concerning your computer and/or Internet access (Optional):
Our school in one of the first 11 schools of the city working with Internet access and implementing internet projects in educational process. We have an Educational Internet Center at school with 10 computers with Windows XP and 10 more in another computer class without Internet access. An administrator of the Educational Internet Center and one computer teacher helps us with technical questions. Only one student has a computer with Internet access at home.
4. Problems We Had To Overcome
One of our main problems was an organization of effective work on the project, because it is our first experience. We worked out a detailed plan of our website indicating “chapters” of the website, questions to answer during our research for each “chapter”, resources where we can obtain necessary information and exact task for each team member. One more problem – lack of computers and Internet access (we couldn’t work at home), our Educational Internet Center has strict schedule of classes, work hours for teachers, community members, etc. For the period of our work on the project we asked school administration about one - two hours of everyday work at the school Internet Center. We were included in the schedule and received good conditions for work. Next - our research is mostly based on meeting with people and taking interviews. We had to travel and talk to people of different professions in many places of Ferghana city and Rishtan town. To overcome this obstacle we had a flexible schedule of our interviews, checked it every week, called people before our meeting to confirm it or to appoint another date of interview. In order to organize successful interviews with two or three people for one meeting we prepared a plan. To motivate people to communicate with us we clearly described our aims, benefits of creating website as a result of our research. For instance, in Ferghana Regional Museum we prepared a computer presentation of our collaboration for the project research for a National Seminar for Museums of Uzbekistan.
5. Our Project Sound Bite
Creation of the project website as a page of our school web site is developing the meaning of the school website, makes it attractive to many people all around the world. We hope that our successful participation in the project will motivate other teachers and students of our school and other schools of our region to be involved in amazing project work. On-line popularization of the Folk Ceramics Arts , the most valuable heritage for our local people is a significant activity for our community.
6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?
“Rishtan Ceramics for Future Generations” is a project under the curriculum topic “Uzbekistan. It’s history, culture, traditions”, English. It meets Uzbekistan State Educational Standards for 8 – 11th grades, English. The project fits to requirements of our school curriculum. In our school (specialized in English) we have more hours of English, 5-6 hours per weak for 8-11th grades. We worked on our project in four steps: planning our work and website content (confirmed by school administration according to the State Standard), making research and gathering data, organizing information and translating for our website and final editing and designing website. We obtained new skills of planning our work, gathering data, interviewing people, designing a website in English. We have received new experience to work like one team, support and help in solving problems to each other. We have opened that such projects like CyberFair should be included into our State Educational Standards. It is achievable and extremely useful for motivation of students in studying English and obtaining better knowledge and good practice in English. Such projects integrate Internet using in school classes (what is new for our country), develop technical skills of working with Internet and students responsibility for their own learning. If students have a meaningful task, useful for their school and local community; work with authentic material; obtain useful skills for tomorrow life and see the result or their team work (our website) – they will work with desire and enthusiasm.