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Online Collaborative Projects

Online collaborative projects offer teachers and students the opportunity to work with students and teachers around the world. The online resources below cover the "how-tos" of project participation, while showcasing some of the best collaborative projects on the Web. Included: Five great sites for getting your class involved in online collaborative projects.

A new kind of lesson is growing in popularity across the country and around the world. As educators acquire increased access to Web based resources, they also are engaging their students in online collaborative projects. Those projects build communication, problem solving, research, and critical thinking skills, and they expose students to different cultures and viewpoints. The sites below offer great collaborative projects resources for both veterans and first time participants.

The Global Schoolhouse
The Global Schoolhouse is a great resource for teachers who are interested in extending their lessons with online collaborative learning. A highlight of the site is the Project Registry, a database of school-based Internet projects, which teachers can use to search for collaborative projects to join or to submit a project of their own.

EduScapes
to help for teachers integrate technology into the curriculum. Different sections of the site address different curriculum areas; other sections provide technology resources, such as using multimedia. The Special Projects area lists current collaborative projects.

Bucket Buddies
This free telecollaborative project for students in grades 1-5 compares pond water samples from around the world. Results are posted on the site, so students can use the data to make comparisons and analyze relationships and trends. An overview of the project, which is offered each fall and spring, and all the materials necessary for participation are available at the site.

The Journey North
The Journey North is a collaborative Internet project that involves classrooms in the study of wildlife migration and the changes to the environment as spring moves north across Mexico, the United States, and Canada. Students share their own field observations and are linked with scientists who provide their expertise directly to the classroom.

ThinkQuest
ThinkQuest is a semi-annual contest in which students between the ages of 9 and 19 design educational Web sites focusing on one of six topic categories. Students compete for prizes in one of three levels. The site offers extensive support for teachers and students and encourages multi-country teams and the creation of multi-language Web sites.

ALSO WORTH A LOOK

For even more great sites for online reference materials, visit the Reference area of Education World's Site Reviews Archives.