Spent quite a bit of time with the principals involved in the project we are setting up connecting our students with students in Krakow, Poland to study the Holocaust. Actually, there are three schools involved as a local 5th grade class will also be interacting on the topic through the use of a number of Web logs hosted here. And there is a connection to Rutgers University as well.
I’m really looking forward to this experience as a way to stretch my use of Manila. Right now we’ve decided to create a site for general information and news as the project progresses, and then separate Web logs for various areas of study, all of which will be connected through the home page. I’m thinking of seeing if I could funnel the newest posts from the “sub logs” to the main page using Manila’s aggregator as well.
It was interesting to go through the list of questions that we need to resolve: how much posting access would we give students? Should the teachers be the ones to give final approval to posts? Do we want the sites open for people to see or restricted only to the participants? (I argued for the former…) Do we need to create logins and passwords? What about fake e-mail addresses? How do we protect the privacy of the students? Etc. There are a lot of configurations in Manila that I’m going to need to get straight in my brain.
But I think this is going to be a great project. Depending on the connection speed of the kids in Poland, we want to include audio and video files (gems), lots of pictures of artifacts, and we really want to get some conversation going among the students. It has a great deal of potential, especially with the different ages and backgrounds of the students involved. We’re going to start on September 8…