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Multiple Literacies and Environmental Science Education: Information Communication Technologies in Formal and Informal Learning Environments

Multiple Literacies and Environmental Science Education: Information Communication Technologies in Formal and Informal Learning Environments
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Author(s): Ruth Hickey (James Cook University, Australia) and Hilary Whitehouse (James Cook University, Australia)
Copyright: 2010
Pages: 19
Source title: Multiple Literacy and Science Education: ICTs in Formal and Informal Learning Environments
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Susan Rodrigues (University of Dundee, Scotland)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61520-690-2.ch008

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Abstract

A project by James Cook University’s School of Education created an online learning environment targeted at rural and regional schools in Far North Queensland. Pre-service teachers worked with practising teachers and children to develop learning activities which were shared through the BirdNet website. The site hosts a wide range of learning activities for bird identification, building school gardens, as well as professional learning tools such as lesson plans and integrated units of work. Project successes indicate that innovation, creativity and place-based learning can support high levels of both ICT and scientific literacy in all participants. The challenges faced included those resulting from technical issues, effects of distance, child-safety provisions for an on-line environment, and entry level of skills for participants. The value of informal learning by pre-service teachers, freed from the formal learning assessment regime, is endorsed as a valid sustainable, strategy which can be adopted by teacher educators.

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