CyberFair Project ID: 5983

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: Native Plants of San Diego
Category: 7. Environmental Awareness

School: John Muir School
    San Diego, CA, USA

100 students, ages 5-18 worked together to complete this CyberFair project on March 22, 2010. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010

Classes and Teachers: John, Julia, Richard, Jason, Lusia, Patti, Michelle, Vince, Joan, Chet, Anne, Joy, Stacey

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site:

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Community

John Muir School is located in the Clairemont community of San Diego City. San Diego City is divided into several smaller communities, many of which John Muir students come from: North Park, City Heights, South Park, Kearny Mesa, Emerald Hills, Linda Vista, South East, Spring Valley, Hillcrest, University City, Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, La Jolla, Mira Mar, and others. The majority of our students are bussed in from all of these neighborhood communities, creating an accurate representation of the greater San Diego population.

2. Summary of Our Project

Muir has a focus on environment. This year our Cyberfair project shares pictures, informations, and interviews from and about the various San Diego plant species and the biomes they belong to.

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:more than 6

C. Connection speed used in the classroom:dedicated connection

D. Number of years our classroom has been connected to the Internet:more than 6

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

The greatest technical obstacle to Cyberfair was understanding the format, possessing the technical skills, and motivating students to do their best in creating the website. Assembling all related student work throughout the year, complete with citations, etc., is a daunting task and takes multiple students and teachers contributions. Cyberfair is truly a holistic educational experience.

5. Our Project Sound Bite

The diversity of San Diego's flora is representative of our diverse student body. We represent every major religion, race, ethnic group, etc. found in the San Diego region. In spite of these differences, we unite in a common purpose on a daily basis as students and faculty. This school year, we participated in several field trips, paideia seminars, and class room activities concerning the native plants found in and around San Diego County. We learned a great deal about the terrific diversity of San Diego plants, collaborated across curricular themes, and worked with students across age/grades.

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

Cyberfair participation has helped to create a sort of cross-age and cross-curricular appreciation for what other grade levels are producing throughout the school year. We are in constant amazement of the quality and quantity of work produced from Kindergarten to 12th grade.

Project Elements

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

•Macbook and netbook laptop computers •telephones (interviews) •digital still cameras •Flash-drives •Internet website •photo editing/ word processing computer software •school libraries •books, newspapers •museums, botanical gardens, hiking trails and natural preserves •oral interviews

•How did these tools help you? The computers were integral to the success of our project. The privilege of having a 1:1 ratio of computers to students ensured that all students were involved in the making of the Cyberfair website. Throughout the year, the cameras, flash-drives, computers, etc. were all employed in documenting our efforts. •Where did you locate each tool? Most of our tools are provided though the San DIego Unified school district via public school funding initiatives and government grant programs. •Nothing was donated by local business, all of our tools are provided via the public funding route. •What were your most valuable tools? Our most valuable and most helpful tools are the computers and the software that is installed on them. Without them, none of our vast body of work could be presented via cyberfair.

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

Our students interviewed local fire and water officials, acting as ambassadors for both our school, and the Cyberfair community. One senior grew plants and donated money to microloans through KIVA. Other students monitored the canyons and cleaned up.

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

We all became more aware of chaparral through the California Chaparral Institute. We all used curriculum from PROBEA at the Natural History Museum. Our Cyberfair project has helped our community via the canyon cleanup, and our increased understanding of the local flora. Students have developed a greater awareness of the importance of maintaining our local eco-systems.

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

Thanks to all teachers, parents, community members and student mentors.


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 5983)

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