Doors to Diplomacy Project ID: 5551

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: The Effects of Global Warming on Human Health and Nature
Category: 7. Health and the Environment

    Edirne, Merkez, Turkey

4 students, ages 15-17 worked together to complete this Doors to Diplomacy project on March 19, 2009. They have participated in Doors to Diplomacy in the following year(s): 2009

Classes and Teachers: Esin CIFTCI, Fisun TOPRAK AYDIN/ Cenktug, Melis, Gizem, Ata

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site:

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Team

Our team consists of six members, four of which are students from different classes. We are Ata (17), Gizem (17), Melis (17) and Cenktug (15). We have come together in order to create our web site for a purpose which we believe in so much. Cenktug, who is the youngest among us, is our web designer. Every weekend, we have met and put what we have done throughout a week together on Cenktug’s PC. We have had the opportunity of seeing how our creative ideas looked on the screen when they are organized. In order to ease and organize our work, we divided our title into subcategories and made our research individually throughout the week in order to get ready for our cooperative meetings at weekends when we share and discuss each other’s findings. Our team coaches are colleagues in the English office of our school. They are Miss CIFTCI (23) and Mrs. AYDIN (28). They are the ones who raised our awareness on global issues by presenting the idea of this project to us. We were really excited and proud of being chosen as the ones who are seen as potentially responsible individuals to handle global issues and show this awareness to the whole world by our teachers. They have believed us and we hope that we will have done our bests to show their faith. They have helped us a lot in dealing with complex English texts, translations and they were always with us at the interviews, meetings, with institutions as our supporters.

2. Summary of Our Project

We start our way with our title: “The effects of global warming on human health and nature”. In order to do that, we should have understood what the global warming was thoroughly. So, we have made a detailed research for several weeks. When we came together, we shared our studies with each other. We had formed an idea about it. Now we could start deep research but before that we had decided what we would include on our website. Then, there appeared nine subcategories to be studied on. They were “Global Warming” in which we briefly described, “Effects” which we divided into two subtitles as “On Human Health” and “On Nature and Environment” which indirectly affects human health, “Solutions” in which we talked about what has been done and can be done for global warming, “Research” in which we included our sensible works for these projects such as our interviews with authoritative institutions; the survey which we applied to the people affected by a huge flood in our city. We think that this section is the most meaningful one among the others because it is the active part of our project. We were active during those studies. Next, we added “About us” part in which we described our team and our country briefly. We also added the “Project Narrative” and “Bibliography” part to our site. In “Image Gallery” part, we wanted to visualize our studies. We included “Contact” part in case someone needs to ask some questions or make comments on our project.

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:1

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

The first difficulty for us was to come together since we are in different classes. We have 40 hours of lessons a week at school. That’s why; there was not enough time to carry out our studies at school. We usually met at break times and shared the work among us. At this point, our team coaches were our organizers to help us come together. They organized the time and helped us to share the work equally. They always checked out the site and made us aware of what we should do next. We gathered every weekend and studied for long hours to do what we could not do through the week because of not having enough time. Since we started this project, we have forgotten what holiday is because weekends are the only common free time for all of us. We studied for long hours together with our team coaches at Mrs. Aydin’s house. Secondly, in order to do our interviews, we had to travel long distances since our school is so far from the city centre. We worked with institutions and thus we should have been in contact with them all the time so it was difficult for us to arrange these meetings. Thirdly, Edirne has a cold climate in winters. In order to raise awareness among people, we carried our studies on the streets most of the time. So, it was really hard for us to resist cold. For example, one day in order to complete our questionnaire, we had walked and talked to people for five hours at -5C. We suffered from flu for some days.

5. Our Project Sound Bite

‘Sleepless but never hopeless for the world of future’ Since the first day we have been informed about the project the idea of representing our school, city and our country in an internetional basis with a product that we will create by our own efforts excited us a lot. In the middle of a catastrophe like global warming which interests the whole world, as the world’s youth, it helped us to discover how important it is to raise awareness starting from our nearby places towards the far away ones, from our city to our country and then to the whole world. Raising this awereness has been our basic responsibility. When we helped the public realise the importance of this issue, we all forgot about our sleepless nights, tired but dedicated weekends on the streets in the cold and the feeling of relaxation and inner peace filled us as we considered ourselves as the real protectors of the world of future.

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

As we know, global warming is not a new topic for humankind. It has a long history but we have recently felt its effects such as severe floods, droughts, temperature rises and the increase in the sea levels. Since we have not been affected by it, we have not given enough importance. Recently, the alarm bells for global warming have begun to go. People’s lifestyles, industrialization, modern life standards have given rise to global warming. We have been already in danger because of the faults of past years. What about the future? Or will there be a future if things go on like this? “The Door to Doomsday” wanted to make a change in this issue. We have interviewed the institutions who deal with this subject. We have learned about what they do for this. By this way, we not only told about our project but also we gave an idea to them for future plans by asking questions.

Our school principals, as the school management helped us a lot but we needed the help of our city governance in order to have the people notice our project. We put up our poster in all official places and schools with the help of the City Hall. By this way, we raised awareness in the society. With the help of the Director of Education, we distributed this poster to all schools in our city and country. Everything begins locally in a small area but spans much larger areas. Local acts will lead to global results.

Project Elements

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

In order to prepare an attractive website, we have used a lot of information tools and technologies. These have helped us to ease our work. The more technology used, the more attractive the website has become. We have computers at school but we usually used our laptops which we have done most of the work at the weekends. Laptops were the most useful tools that we used throughout our project preparation period. Telephones were also important in order to arrange our meetings. We have made use of Internet a lot when we wanted to share our studies with each other. Each and every of us has a laptop so we have been quicker in completing our work. In our interviews, we used our video cameras which we recorded our interviews on and photo cameras which we took photos of our interviews. In order to use the photos in some documents, we used scanners and added these on our website. As computer software, we used a lot such as “FrontPage 2003”, “Photoshop CS2”, “Photoshop CS3”, “Microsoft Office”, “Macromedia Flash Player” We also made use of books and newspapers in order to include some useful information. We didn’t just use the information on other sources, but also we created our own website with the help of the technology. We realised that our imagination became true with the help of technological tools. Otherwise, these “creative ideas”would have stayed in our minds. We also used other websites and newspapers to introduce our project to the public.

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

At the beginning, we were excited because our team coaches informed us that this project will lead us to speak with authorities and announce our project to the country on our own. In other words, we would do what is necessary by our own opportunities. That has meant that we would be heard as long as we were courageous. So, we started to work by planning what we would do. We made a list of authorities that we would have interviews with and visited those places. After giving information about our project and what we wanted to do, we asked several questions to the authorities and noted down their answers. We asked for useful resources to the places we visited. Beside these, we arranged meetings with our Mayor and Governor who are the most two powerful people in our local area. We gave information to them about our project. We also collaborated with the Mayor and started a tree planting campaign for an area which was formerly used as a garbage area. We planted trees to this area. We met with the Director of Education in our city and got his help in order to announce our project to the whole country. They helped us in distributing our global warming posters to all the schools in our city. On the other hand, our Mayor helped us in distributing our posters to governance agencies. We gained the appreciation of everyone that we contacted with because of taking part in such an international project which will raise awareness among people. We were the leaders of this movement. We did whatever we could do with our limited opportunities. While announcing our project to the people through press, we were once more the spokespersons who gave information about what could be done. We also arranged a meeting at our school’s auditorium to inform our friends. The more active we were, the more courageous we became.

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

When our team coaches first talked about this project with us, we decided to create a different web page from the existing ones. The first rule was not to be boring. People should learn something while surfing on our page. They should not just click on the pages to see the photos. At this point, we tried to be imaginative and creative as much as possible. The second thing we paid attention to was to inform people who were not aware of global warming. We live in technology age but we found out that there are a lot of ignorant people while we are doing our questionnaire. We tried not to include complicated information on our web site because everybody should be able to read and understand the things included. At this point, we tried to simplify the complicated information in a way which everybody could understand without getting bored.

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

Like the title of our project, we couldn’t handle it on our own. We needed the help of authorities. Otherwise, we would not be able to introduce our project to the people. First of all, we would like to thank to our school’s principal since she let us go for our meetings with the institutions during the lesson time. We had meeting with formal institutions which are open between 8.00am and 5.00pm., so we had to meet with them during school time otherwise we would not have been able to interview. We got help from several institutions during our project studies. First of all, we should mention that we took all the necessary documents from the institutions we had had an interview with. The Director of Sanitary Board helped us to prepare the questions for our questionnaire. We prepared a poster on computer and the Mayor helped us to publish them on big size and they copied 250 posters for us. They didn’t demand any money from us. They also helped us in distributing them to governance agencies since they think that the issue of global warming is very important for humanity. We met with the Director of Education in our city; firstly, he told us that they would publish the news of our project on their official web site. Then, he helped us to distribute our poster to the schools in our city. He was also at our press meeting at our school. There were also our friends at school who helped us a lot when we stayed at school after school time to complete our studies.

5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)

The most surprising point in our project process was the people’s ignorance about the global warming. There were even people without any knowledge. Especially, the illeteracy of an institution’s director about global warming and his interesting thesis amazed us a lot. We understood how important is to raise awareness among society. During our survey, some people didn’t want to answer our questions, some of them even got angry. One of the people found an excuse for not answering our questionnaire by saying that there was economic crisis and he couldn’t sell things while answering questions. There were a lot of illeterate people. The climate changes were another problem that we experienced ourselves. We had to postpone the time of applying the questionnaire to the people because of heavy weather conditions. The weather which was sunny the day before suddenly changed and became snowy. When we went the following week, there were unexpected guests this time: dogs on the streets. Similarly, the weather on the day on which we went to plant trees was very stormy and we felt the effects of global warming again. All these things that we experienced throughout this project taught us that the planet, which we live on, is very important.


View our Doors to Diplomacy Project (Project ID: 5551)

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