Cable in the Classroom's Project Cam.

Author:Nyhus, Jill
 
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Broadband technology, the high-speed gateway to the Internet, is giving library media specialists amazing new powers, and a host of new tools from Cable in the Classroom, the cable industry's education foundation. Among these is Project Cam, part of a suite of new interactive educational tools developed by Cable in the Classroom to offer educators and students the learning benefits of broadband. The platform enables two locations to connect via simple webcams. It enables a ninth-grade government class to discuss the local election process with their city's mayor; science classes in Ohio to become explorers in the Panamanian rainforest; and teens in Pennsylvania to share original poetry as part of a poetry slam.

Available free of charge on www.ciconline.org/projectcam, Project Cam offers each project access to a private Web page, where participants can share live video and audio feeds, communicate with live text-based chat capability, and store and share all kinds of files.

What makes Project Cam so exciting is that it's a great bridge that erases distance, making the educational journey broader and wider ranging than it could possibly be if traveled on foot. Recently, first-year middle school Spanish students in Maine "met" with high school students thousands of miles away in Puerto Rico. Students had a great time sharing their respective cultures and practicing each other's languages--an authentic learning experience that could only be replicated if students physically traveled to each other's countries.

According to Peggy O'Brien, Ph.D., executive director of Cable in the Classroom, broadband and the Web can add to the learning process in ways that other elements simply cannot match. Thanks to cable technology...

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