Amún Shéa´s Computer Lab is now fully funded and operational, thanks to your generous support. Our students now have access to all of the information available online. This goes a long way towards leveling the playing field with regard to providing digital tools for learning.
Most of our students are enrolled in online for mathematics and English. Several have advanced to 3D modeling programs and media tools. We are now looking for the best manner to connect with other schools and students via internet, to share experiences and broaden horizons.
While the focus has been on our students, access to similar learning experiences around the world has proven to be a huge plus for our teachers and administration. As we currently move forward with curriculum building we are finding our task much easier given available information and experiences shared through the internet.
As we close this project, we encourage you to maintain close contact. We have other projects on Globalgiving; we would be happy to see your continued support through one of those. Our facebook page and website will keep you informed of our activities as we move forward.
Thanks to you, our Computer Lab is practically finished. We are in fact using it on a daily basis for school assemblies, achievement fairs, groups work and presentations.
We are evaluating in advantages of installing solar energy from the start, rather than adapting later. The electrical installation will proceed once that decision has been reached. The interior divisions will depend on that installation, as well.
The window screens are fully installed. We lack our contribution yet to install the window panes yet. In the meanwhile, we are moving ahead with our digital program, as described below.
Our educators combine local teaching materials with self-instructional digital technology to create a highly personalized and adaptable learning environment for each student. Business plans and projects are structured according to the personal interests of each student. A Personal Learning Environment (PLE) is the “tool kit” which our students will use and update throughout their lives as needed. This emphasis on digital tools and resources actually levels the playing field for our students, giving them access to the same information and processes as students in what are considered more favorable conditions.
The computer lab has opened the door to new horizons. We have enrolled our students in Kahn Academy, an online resource for learning mathematics. Our English program has been greatly enhanced by the online resource Duolingo, which allows students to advance at their own pace. Several have opted for other languages as well. Traditional notebooks have been left behind, in favor of blogs as the medium for analysis and synthesis of each day´s activity and for reporting on progress in projects. Our students learn to organize resource material for their projects and special interests through several online resources, including Scoop.It and Pinterest. Social communication skills are vital tools to have to meet current challenges and opportunities. Among the most common our students use are Google+, Facebook and Twitter.
Although our Computer Lab is not quite finished, it is far along enough to put to use. All that is lacking is the ceramic flooring, windows, electrical installation and internal partitions. Even as it is, it´s a great place for meetings and group activity. It is our most spacious building, cool during the day and well lit.
It has now become the place for music lessons, games and recreation. Parent meetings take place in the new Computer Lab, with plenty of room for interaction and presentations. When inside work is completed, computers will be installed. Since our last report, the roofing has been finished, the screens built and installed and the doors have been built on site and installed. The stucco has been finished inside with one outside wall to be completed. We did add a few items not contemplated within the original project, such as a surface-water drainage and the outside landing and sidewalk for the entrance. We have gone over budget, as we mentioned in the last report, but are putting together a top quality building that will be in service for many years to come. We will itemize these details in the next report along with a revised budget.
We are at full speed ahead right now. With the funding on hand, we focused on finishing the roof structure and then putting the roofing on. We upgraded the roofing to structural grade, which pushed the budget somewhat but provides additional structural integrity and security for our students. We have poured the concrete subfloor, complete with conduits for wiring. Once again we made the decision to upgrade, in this case changing the planned concrete flooring to industrial grade ceramic. Currently we are plastering the walls and putting the finishing touches on the concrete columns.
While our budget is tight, we made the decision to upgrade specific construction components in order to enhance esthetics and longevity, as well as to guarantee the best environment for digital engineering. The additional monies spent now will lessen future maintenance costs.
Next activities are windows and doors, along with finishing up the plastering of the walls. Our students are anxiously awaiting the opening of their Computer Lab.
We are so very happy to announce that this first project, Computer Lab for Young Social Entrepreneurs, is now fully funded. A heart-felt thank you to each and every one of you, our partners.
This will allow us to put full effort into finishing up this lab for use by our students at the beginning of the school year. We will be sending out frequent reports as the construction begins.
This is our first challenge project with GlobalGiving. For those of you with recurring donations, we will request clarification once the holidays pass by. Please be assured that any "extra" funding would go to the internal partitions within the lab itself.
Thank you for making this happen. We wish each and every one a blessed New Year, filled with happiness for you and those you love.
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Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
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