CyberFair Project ID: 4777

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: Rishtan Ceramics for Future Generations
Category: 8. Local Music and Art Forms

School: #40 “Parvoz”
    Ferghana, Ferghana, Uzbekistan

two students, ages 14 years old and 17 years worked together to complete this CyberFair project on March 7, 2007. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 2007

Classes and Teachers: Mr. Sergey Ovcharenko, 9th and 11th grades

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site:

Project Overview

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.

Project Elements

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

We had access to the internet through one (sometimes two) internet able workstations at school. Only one student who designed website has a computer with Internet access at home. Also we used a school digital camera to take pictures during research process and school scanner to make some copies of photos and museum documents.. Of course, school and home telephones helped us to make appointments and figure out necessary details with people in Ferghana city, Tashkent and Rishtan town. We even conducted some interviews with Rishtan ceramists and on the phone. We used a digital voice-recorder (won by Yaroslav in the International projects for young journalists PEARL) for interviewing museum workers and ceramists. The process of selecting the most essential for us information from authentic interview data and editing it on computer became much easier. For gathering reliable information we visited a Regional Museum, interviewed people there, found more contacts of people to work with and studied old materials from History and Art museum storage. The most helpful tools are computers with Internet access for communication, organizing material and Internet research; telephones to coordinate our work. Research in Ferghana Regional Museum and Interviwing helped us to provide unique authentic information for the website.

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

We have involved a lot of people from the school and city community to help us actively. Yaroslav wrote an article Welcome to“ CyberFair Project about the project work for the school newspaper and now he is working on a news story “ Research of Rishtan Ceramics” for on-line PEARL newsletter where two his articles are published (, articles 'School Internet centers open new doors' and 'Students take a break in a journalism camp'). We have made a website presentation in the Ferghana Regional Museum for our city community. We invited our local Media (“Ferganskaya Pravda” regional newspaper’s reporter.) to our presentation. We are planning more meetings and presentations – for school students at National Navruz Holiday (March 22, 2006) and our facilitator has appointed our project presentation in our City Department of Education for Ferghana city teachers of English in April 2006. At the meeting we will share the advantages and challenges of our project and will recommend to include our website in the list of recommended on-line resources for teachers and students of our county, theme “Uzbekistan” , topic Arts and culture.

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

Rishtan ceramists, who work at home workshops and Rishtan Art Ceramic Factory don’t have Internet Access, they are not acquainted with Internet Resources on ceramics and don’t have a Factory or Rishtan Association of Ceramists website. Just a few of them are mentioned in tourists’ websites of Uzbekistan. Our help was very practical for them, we demonstrated new on-line opportunities for them, some web resources of Pottery Studious in other countries, information about International Associations of Ceramists, information about contests, awards and grants, etc. Craftsmen and Rishtan Art Ceramic Factory administration realized the importance of new IT technologies for their further successful development and better international relations with other countries. After our project we are going to continue our cooperation with Rishtan ceramists and help them with a website of Rishtan Art Ceramic Factory. Our local community will see the great achievement of Ferghana region Folk Art Heritage available for on-line community all around the world. Ferghana school community will be interested and involved in Internet projects and more teachers and students will participate in on-line activities ( at least five schools are ready to integrate Internet activities in classes and out of class activities). Our team is ready to conduct some Internet projects together with students from other schools – to consult their research, conduct some trainings on web design and making Power Point presentations for new participants.

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

Volunteers of our project were resourceful and helpful , we appreciate their contribution in our project. Our school History Teacher Valentina Golbek gave some important history details of ancient ceramics development, museum representatives helped in work with museum’s artifacts, documents Archive materials and prepared some rare photos and documents for our website, Rishtan ceramists and their students gave us extra information about contacts of old ceramic workers. Ferghana Youth Educational center director Sergey Akopdjanov helped us with designing website and gave us some practical advice of digital camera using. A “FLEX” program Alum Javlon Turdiev advised us with Internet research. Our former English teacher, Peace Corps volunteer Vickie Nailing supported us in involving parents in our project. Our mothers and fathers helped us to print and scan materials, to organize our project presentation in Ferghana Regional Museum.

5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)

We realized how important it is – to be active and helpful. It is a fabulous feeling – to help others in something, even if it is just demonstrated ceramics Internet Resources. We have found new opportunities for further collaboration and activities with community members. For example, we were invited to participate in Ferghana museum trainings and seminars for other museums of Uzbekistan in order to demonstrate our cooperation: to present our project website on other schools of our city. Living in Ferghana city we were sure that Folk Arts of Rishtan representatives and production managers widely use Internet Technologies in their work. It was a great surprise when we figured out that they have just one old computer for the whole Rishtan Art Ceramic Factory! We have become good friends with Rishtan town ceramists and will help them with creating a of Rishtan Art Ceramic Factory website. We have learned : if you want to change a situation – start it from yourself. Do what you can do, change what you can change. Even it is a small step. Many small changes, efforts of many active people (following your example) will completely change a situation. We have already started. Our project is not a “top of our mountain”. It is just “a bottom” , a very beginning of our further growth: our personal development, collaboration with many schools, organizations and usual people of our region in order to change our community life , develop international relations and make a difference in the world. We are a part of our city, country and world community. We are proud of that.


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 4777)

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