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Schools Learn About 2010 Games with Digital Technology

Author: UBC Faculty of Education

Published: 2010-02-13 : (Rev. 2017-12-24)

Synopsis and Key Points:

The UBC Global Minds Challenge encourages learning through remote participation in the Winter Games.

Main Digest

Schools use digital technology to learn about the 2010 Games - Students from North Vancouver and the Netherlands teamed up on school projects using an online forum they created.

In Regina, a Grade 8 class created avatars and a virtual world. Another group of Regina students created blogs and an online wiki to share information with students doing the same thing in Argentina, China and around the world.

These projects were among the five winners of the University of British Columbia's Global Minds Challenge. The competition for K-12 classrooms invited teachers and students to demonstrate the use of digital technologies to promote a better understanding of the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. The Global Minds Challenge is part of VANOC's 2010 Winter Games Education program.

"Today's learners inhabit a brave new digital world," said David Vogt, director of Digital Learning Projects in the UBC Faculty of Education. "The UBC Global Minds Challenge is an affirmation of the role that schools play in preparing learners to resolve the challenges and the opportunities of this new world."

Prizes of $2,010 were awarded to the top submissions. Schools from across Canada participated in the first year of what will become an international annual competition. Next year schools will focus on learning about sustainability.

But for 2010, with UBC Thunderbird Arena hosting men's and women's hockey during the Olympics, and the sledge hockey tournament for the Paralympics, the theme was the 2010 Winter Games. The UBC Global Minds Challenge encourages learning through remote participation in the Winter Games.

Erik Van Dusen, a Grade 8 teacher of a winning class from Regina, plans to use the prize money to purchase a SMART Board. Van Dusen hopes the SMART Board will help increase student interactivity during lessons.

"The unprecedented media moments of the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games will also be unprecedented teaching moments," said Don Black, director of Education Programs for VANOC. "The UBC Global Minds Challenge is a welcome contributor to VANOC's educational vision."

The panel of judges included Pierre Gilbert, manager of the Vancouver 2010 Education Program at the British Columbia Ministry of Education; Matthew Kearney, senior lecturer in Educational Technology at the University of Technology in Sydney Australia; and Ron Owston, professor of Education and director of the Institute for Research in Learning Technologies and co-director of the Technology Enhanced Learning Institute at York University

For more information, visit: www.educ.ubc.ca

The UBC Global Minds Challenge is one of many UBC 2010 educational opportunities, including public speaker series, conferences, ongoing course curricula and cultural events. UBC's Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Center is a 2010 Winter Games competition venue and UBC Robson Square is housing the BC International Media Center. UBC researchers are conducting a number of independent Games-related research projects, including the world's first Olympic Games Impact research project.

Visit UBC's Online 2010 Media Center - www.ubc.ca/2010media - to connect with UBC 2010 experts, story ideas and students from your country.

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