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School and youth programs on the World Wide Web
ePALS Classroom Exchange -- The World's Largest K-12 Online Classroom and electronic penpal network, connecting 3.8 million students and teachers in more than 65,000 registered classrooms in 191 countries. Set up a free classroom profile and ePALS Web email account to collaborate on school and cultural projects, learn language skills and make friends worldwide. In English, French, Spanish, German, Portuguese, Japanese. Search for ePals or classrooms by country, by language or by keyword.
Meeting Place is an online forum with thousands of messages from children discussing issues that affect them, such as children working in factories or on the street, how war affects children, growing up as a girl, living in the city, and more. Meeting Place shares a home page with Learning Place and Teachers' Place, all part of Unicef's Voices of Youth project. Online classrooms, resources, archives, site search, links.
Kidlink is a free eight-month multi-lingual educational schools program to help children get involved in a global dialog. It's a set of 77 email mailing lists for group discussion, a private real-time chat network and an online kids' art exhibition, run by a worldwide network of volunteers, mostly teachers and parents. More than 175,000 kids from 144 countries on all continents have participated, in 19 languages. Participants must submit personal presentations and views on the desired future of this world. "Now you have tasted the wonders of a global classroom. Now when you see the name of one of these countries in the evening news or in the newspapers, you will feel different: you will feel involved." Plenty of support online.
Junior Summit says the world's children are not consulted on too many issues that affect them and their future, and aims to change that, offering children "a platform to effect real change". The first summit was in Tokyo in 1995. The second started with a global invitation from the MIT Media Lab to nearly a million young people, with 8,000 replying. Nearly 3,000 of them from 139 countries joined an on-line forum in September 1998, and 100 of these from 54 countries attended the six-day Junior Summit in November 1998 at MIT in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Delegates' presentations online (multi-media). Online Resource Bank database and forum for finding solutions to problems children face, Junior Journal monthly global newspaper, a new virtual country for children -- Nation1 (http://nation1.net), and other initiatives and resources online. In nine languages.
The World Bank's World Links for Development (WorLD) program promotes "connectivity" for developing country secondary schools, helping them to procure and install the necessary hardware and software and linking them with schools around the world. Partner schools, projects, content and training.
I*EARN (the International Education and Resource Network), a partner in the World Bank's WorLD Program, enables young people to undertake collaborative projects contributing to the health and welfare of the planet and its people. Site search, Interactive forums, Member/Project databases, Language resources, professional development, and more.
The GLOBE Program (Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment) is a worldwide Internet-based network of students, teachers, and scientists working together to study and understand the global environment. Over a million primary and secondary students in more than 10,000 schools in 96 countries have taken part in the program; there are now more than 16,000 GLOBE-trained teachers.
Earthwatch Global Classroom has project resources on endangered ecosystems, oceans, biodiversity, cultural diversity, global change, world health, origins of the future. Scholarships for K-12 teachers and high school students to participate in Earthwatch expeditions, students nominated by teachers are eligible for student research teams. Expedition photos, reports, and lessons online. Focus mainly on the Americas.
The Odyssey World Trek follows a team of adult volunteers around the world on a two-year trek, spending six weeks in each of 10 non-Western centres and documenting their experiences and the lives and perspectives of the people they meet in video, audio, photos and text. Content is posted on The Odyssey website for students to follow. Students can also interact with the team, the people they meet, and each other. Includes lesson plans and teacher guides.
A SEED (Action for Solidarity, Equality, Environment and Development) involves young people in the struggles against ecological destruction and social injustice. Formed in 1991 in the run-up to the Earth Summit (UN Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), A SEED has grown into a global network linking youth and student groups active in the field of environment, development and human rights.
Youth Environmental News Desk -- Environmental news reports by people up to the age of 19, published and distributed worldwide by the Environment News Service (ENS) and featured on the Horizon Solutions Site. Entries invited from all countries. Reports will be translated and distributed in Spanish, English, German, Portuguese, Swedish, Mandarin, Swahili, French, Nepali, Punjabi, and Hindi. Send your report with a brief personal resume to the ENS editorial desk at firstname.lastname@example.org. Email only, put the words "Youth Desk" in the subject line.
Also, Solutions Site for Kids -- case studies, Learn and Do, ongoing Contests, chat room, discussions and projects under Talk. "Become a member of our Youth Advisory Board!"