Schools CyberFair 96
This page introduces our Prize Winning entry to International Schools CyberFair,
We are a
GRAND PRIZE WINNER
and placed second in Category 5 :
Local Attractions (Natural and Man-Made)
with our entry
MAKING IT HAPPEN
Information About Our Site
- School: St. Martha Elementary School
District: Diocese of Lansing
City: Okemos, Michigan, USA
- Teachers or Classes:
Mr. Scott Haid - 4/5th Grade Teacher
S. Pat Newhouse - 3rd Grade Teacher
- How many students worked on this project? 32
Their ages were: 8-10 years of age
- The following people helped us:
MR. JAMES BLEICHER, engineer and plant manager for General Motors for 35
years spoke to us about the importance of the car industry in Lansing. He
showed us a video which explained how the auto plants in Lansing work together
to assemble five different General Motor cars.
MR. DOUGLAS FINLEY, former Lansing Parks and Recreation Director/ Potter
Park Zoo Director, explained to us the difference between the parks department
and the recreation department. He also helped us design an ideal
MRS. MARY C. QUASARANO, director of membership for the Lansing Convention
and Visitors Bureau, told us how her organinzation attracts people to the
Lansing area. In other words how they "put heads on Lansing's beds."
She brought each of us Lansing Visitor Guide Book which we used in planning
an imaginary day in Lansing.
MRS. MAURA CAMPBELL, from the Michigan Jobs Commission, explained to us
how the State Jobs Commision attracts and supports businesses coming into
our area. She said that the Lansing economy was like a three legged stole
and is supported by its three main attractions: the three C's - Cars (Industry/Business),
Capital (State Government), and Campus (Micigan State University).
MRS. HELEN GRAINGER, former Lansing School school bus driver and author
of a children's book about Lansing, told us about the early history of our
area attractions and showed us many pictures of what places originally looked
R. E. OLDS ANDERSON, grandson of Ransom Eli Olds, founder of the Lansing
automobile industry, told us about his grandfather. He also showed us home
movies of his family in the early 1900's. We even saw Grandpa Olds driving
MR. TONY BENAVIDES, Lansing City Council member, arranged a meeting for
us at City Hall. We were able to meet many heads of departments and find
out how city government works. He also invited us to open a City Council
meeting with a prayer and the pledge of alligence to the flag.
MR. R. ERIC REICHEL, Lansing's Park and Recreation director, told us some
very interesting facts about attractions in the Lansing park system, especially
Potter Park (the number one attraction in the city).
POLICE CHIEF BOLES, head of the Lansing Police Department, explained the
different jobs the police force does to make our city safe.
THE BRETTON WOOD GARDEN CLUB MEMBERS, from the westside of Lansing, held
their monthly meeting at St. Martha School. They did a presentation for
our entire school so we could learn more about the function of a garden
club and its projects. We visited the five different demonstration tables
they set up and found out about seed propagation, bulbs and soil preparation,
as well as, the value of trees and herbs. Their demonstration of flower
arranging helped us appreciate the design and beauty of flowers.
MR. DAVID HOLLISTER, Mayor of Lansing, came to our school and spoke to us
about his dream of making Lansing a "World Class City." He even
told us about some of his plans for creating future attractions in the capital
BISHOP CARL MENGELING, new bishop of Lansing, met with a group of students
to talk about his number one goal for the Diocese of Lansing - provided
a good Christian education for all its children.
MRS. ROSE ZACH, owner of Wild Birds Unlimited of Okemos, explained the different
kinds of birds found in the Lansing Area, especially the Michigan bluebird.
She is assisting us in setting up a certified Backyard Wildlife Habitat
on our school grounds.
CHAD GENT AND THE "BIG LUG", group sales representative and mascot
for the Lansing Lugnut Baseball team, told us about the new minor league
baseball team coming to town. This team and its new stadium in downtown
Lansing will be a great attraction to the city.
MR. BRUCE WISE, from Distinctive Fabrications and father of Chad Combs Wise,
4th grader, cut all the wood for the bluebird houses.
MR. SEVERIN GRABSKI, professor from M.S.U. Department of Accounting and
father of Valerie Grabski, 4th grader, greatly assisted us in setting up
RHONDA COON, WKAR-TV Public Broadcasting
representative, provided us with videos of Lansing's history.
MISS CARRIE MIESKI, from Michigan State University admissions office, told
us about the history of the university and how it impasts the Greater Lansing
- Project Contact Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Project Overview We entered our Web site in CyberFair Category:
Natural and Man-Made Attractions Description of "Our
We will be showcasing Greater Lansing, the
capital city of Michigan, centrally located in the state. The Grand River,
the longest river in the state, flows through the heart of our city. The
capital city is presently undergoing massive changes as it strives to become
a "World Class City."Summary of Our Project
On our website we will be highlighting the Greater Lansing area attractions.
The three main ones are CARS (North American Operations), CAPITAL (State
Government), and CAMPUS (Michigan State University). Since Lansing is known
as the "City of Parks" we will be showcasing them, as well as,
its many wonderful museums.
Project Elements This
section explains the project elements found in the CyberFair
1. How did your activities and research for this International School
CyberFair 96 project support your required coursework and curriculum requirements?
Our CyberFair Proect got us involved in all areas of our
curriculum. It tied in well with Michigan History and the was the most interest
project we've ever worked on. Many of the students skills were improved,
such as; researching, creative writing and drawing, critical thinking, questing,
sum arizing and cooperative learning. The most improtant thing we learned
though was how to create a web site on the Internet and present information
in a pleasing and interesting way so that people all over the world could
learn about our community. We are especially grateful to all the speakers
and volunteers who spent time with us sharing what they know about Lansing's
What information tools and technologies did you use to complete your CyberFair
Many different information tools and technologies
were used in completing our CyberFair project. They included:
Power Macintosh 5300/100LC
Color One Scanner
Apple T.V. video system
Apple Presentation System
Apple Color Style Writer Pro
Adobe Pagemill - HTML Editor
Ofoto - to scan software
Eudora - for e-mail
In what ways did you act as "ambassadors" and spokespersons for
your CyberFair project both on-line and in person?
we began our CyberFair Project we started by contacting speakers from the
Greater Lansing area attractions such as; General Motors, the Parks and
recreation Department, City Hall, Michigan State University and others.
The procedure the students followed for each speaker was; researched the
attractions - so they could ask thoughtful questions, had the presentations,
then followed them up with enrichment activities. All of our speakers commented
on the amount of background knowledge the children displayed.
The students caught Lansing Mayor David Hollister's enthusiam as he described
his vision of making Lansing a "World Class City," and their enthusiam
shows throughout their web site.
As word got out about the project, more and more community members became
involved. For example, parents volunteered at all levels from actual construction
of the web site to volunteering to speak, as well as arrange for speakers
and media coverage. Other colleagues have contacted us to offer congratulations.
We have been asked by the superintendent of the Diocese of Lansing to make
a presentation about our project at the M.A.N.S. (Michigan Association of
Non-Public Schools) convention next year. Sister Phyllis Supencheck, director
of student teachers at Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, also invited
us to speak to future teachers about technology in the classroom.
As a result of extensive coverage (two newspaper articles, three T.V. news
coverage stories, and one live radio talk show) several parents have inquired
about registering students in our school. Through our web site links to
the Greater Lansing area attractions we are confident people will be stimulated
to learn about and want to visit our wonderful city. We also expect other
schools will want to become involved on the Internet.
4. What has been the impact of your project on your
Even at the earliest stages our project made
and impact on our school, parents, and the community in general. It has
engendered a spirit of PRIDE and enthusiasm, not only in our city's attractions,
but also in the accomplishments of the students.
The students have seen the interrelatedness of their category (natural and
man-made attractions) with the local economy. This was recently made clear
to them in the following examples: A strike at two General Motors plants
in a neighboring state brought production at the Lansing car assembly plant
to a standstill within a few days, idling over 8,000 workers. This part
of the Lansing ecomony was in limbo until the strike was settled. At the
same time, the students could see the positive effect of having a new baseball
team make its home in our city. Already they can see that businesses, restaurants
and tourist attractions benefit by having thousands of fans come to the
city for games.
In addition to academic skills the students gained many life-long personal
skills, such as:
- work in cooperative groups with people of different ages;
- being confident in meeting and talking with people regardless of their
job or expertise;
- and learning to communicate globally.
In fact, the enthusiasm for the CyberFair project among parents within our
school is so complete that those with younger children already have expressed
a desire that their kids participate in the program when they reach third
did your project involve other members of your community as helpers and
Our previous answers highlight how we have involved
countless community volunteers, both as speakers and resources for information,
as well as parent assistants. In fact, we see this as a collaborative effort
benefitting the students, staff, and the entire St. Martha community. In
particular we would like to give special thanks to Mr. Severin Grabski,
father of 4th grader Valerie. Without his help in understanding the technical
aspects of the Cyberfair assignment, this project would not have been able
to be completed. THANKS SEV!!!
What other things have you done at your school to "Share and Unite"
with your community?
Parents joined us on March 11th at
the Lansing City Council Meeting , during which time we were introduced
to the council members.
The community project we chose to do in connection with our CyberFair theme
was to construct and provided a dozen Michigan bluebird nesting houses to
our largest Lansing attraction - Potter Park's Zoo Wildlife Area. We also
plan to use the rest of them around our school to build a Certified Backyard
Wildlife Habitat for all to enjoy.
Because we are a new school, we feel as though we should be leaders in education
in the 21st century. By providing this website to our school, the community
and the world we feel that we are not only leading others by words, but
also by example.
- Link to our School Home Page