1) What information tools & technologies did you used to complete your CyberFair project?
We have 2005 Dell PCs in our computer lab with a dedicated DSL connection. We used the Internet and Moodle for online collaboration (messaging, file sharing, wikis), a camcorder for oral interviews, scanner, cell phones, digital camera, Dreamweaver, Flash MX, MS Word, Power Point, Excel, Hot Potatoes quiz builders, and jump/flash drives and computer networking to share documents.
2) In what ways did you act as "ambassadors" and spokespersons for your CyberFair project both on-line and in person.
After we learned online with our recycling resources, we shared what we learned by writing a script and performing a play for our younger classrooms. We taught them how important recycling is. We made contact with so many people, especially at the St. Louis Recycling Exposition booths. The volunteers there made learning fun because they were excited to share with us. They told our teacher it was refreshing to see young people at the exposition. We represented our school and our project when we spoke to our Southeast District planner, sent our survey forms out, and when we had meetings with the SFCEC manager and the Farmington city administrator. We shared our hopes with the city council at their meeting. With the support of the city, the grant will not cost but half as much compared to the full cost of a drop-off facility. If the grant isn’t approved, maybe the city will still put in the facility. We want to be the face of a better tomorrow for our community.
3) What has been the impact of your project on your community?
We think our impact will be tremendous. How easy recycling will be if it is only a few blocks from a house, a business, or a school! Our school impact will be that all of us know about recycling and we will take that knowledge home to our families. We will also have a website online and connect it to our city's website, hopefully. They can support us by sharing with their friends and people they work with. Together all of us can spread the word so that everyone in Farmington in the near future can recycle easily and at little cost.
Because we have a school recycling container now, we can teach the younger students and their families how to recycle. We can even teach our school teachers how to do it! Hundreds of people will be impacted just at our school and church alone. When we create the marketing for this facility, we will be telling many people by advertising through the newspapers. We will be visiting schools and organizations to tell them about the facility. Maybe someone who has never recycled will give it a try because it is nearby to them. Maybe another town will read about what we did in the newspaper and try to develop more recycling. It can have a far-reaching impact.
4) How did your project involve other members of your community as helpers and volunteers?
We depended upon and were helped by so many people; it’s so important to thank them all! Elizabeth McAdam, a St. Louis recycling specialist, really started us on our journey by answering questions through emails about who we should contact for our region. She also gave us website resources. Mrs. Rickus, our school secretary, helped us by driving us for a field trip. We also want to thank our parents that drove us to field trips. Our principal, Duane Giesselmann, was very supportive of our recycling project. He approved the container at our school, our St. Paul Paper Pile-up experiment, and all our field trips. Greg Beavers, the city administrator, was so helpful in explaining what he knew about recycling and best of all, he shared the grant information with us and let us participate in its preparation. He encouraged us to speak to the city council. Alan AuBuchon, the SFCEC (St. Francois County Environmental Corporation) manager, gave us a tour of the transfer station, explained how curbside recycling works, showed us a covered landfill, and also brought the recycling container we are now using. These adults were great role models for us and helped us believe we could reach our goals.
We also want to thank the MO cities that answered our recycling survey questions: Clayton, Hannibal, Kirksville, Manchester, Nixa, Overland, Poplar Bluff, Raymore, Rolla, Sedalia, Sikeston, Warrensburg, and Wentzville.
Lianna Stover, our web server host, is the special honorary person that we depend on the most. Thanks to her for all her encouragement, availability to answer questions, and sharing of knowledge about websites. We couldn’t have done it without you!
5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)
Can we make a difference? Now we believe we can. The best thing we’ve learned is that we can make a difference and in a very short time, too. Learning about recycling will change our lives and make us better citizens of our planet.