The Internet2 network was expanded 10 years ago to allow K-12 schools to gain access to Internet2 through partnerships with any of the 206 universities currently members of the network. Last year, about 4,300 districts total were in partnerships with member universities. Schools do need to have the right network infrastructure. But the investment yields a lot of great benefits for the district, the schools, the teachers and especially the students. The ultra-fast connection makes everything easier and finally possible. At the March conference of the Consortium for School Networking, presenters showcased some of the projects happening in schools, including:
- In Barrow County, GA, K-12 schools "have used a high-definition video link to the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta to control cameras and view images of sea life remotely from their classrooms; learned calculus from Georgia Tech instructors using a "virtual whiteboard" application; and interacted with researchers on the ocean floor near Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary just off Sapelo Island, Ga."
- The National Library of Medicine has created the Visible Human Project that has "complete, anatomically detailed, three-dimensional representations of the normal male and female human bodies." In addition, the University of Michigan "created two- and three-dimensional navigational browsers through which students can take a virtual tour of the human body."
- Project Lemonade brings students in grades 3-8 together from across the world to engage in "real-world problem-based" activities.
- Virtual field trips, differentiated instruction, and more.
SOURCE: "Internet2 expands schools' possibilities" 05/27/08
photo courtesy of Ack Ook, used under this Creative Commons license