HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT USE OF WORLD-WIDE-WEB BASED HYPERMEDIA
M. Gwen Sibert
Roanoke Valley Governor's School for Science and Technology
What is the Governor's School?
- a regional, specialized high school for students interested in science, mathematics and computers.
- students attend either a morning ( AM session) or afternoon (PM session) with the other part of their school day at their "home school"
- students enter either as freshman or sophomores, depending on the school system that sends them
- supported by seven neighboring school school systems, some very rural, and one very urban
- in its eleventh year of operation
What is Governor's School Chemistry?
It's not high school chemistry
It's not AP chemistry
It's more like college freshman chemistry
Text used is General Chemistry, Third Edition, by McQuarrie and Rock.
Competency based (as are all of the courses at RVGS).
It is part of the VA Tech Chemistry Hypermedia Project
Objective: put as much of my course material onto the chemistry webserver for use by Governor's School students, VA Tech freshman chemistry students, and whomever else might find it useful.
How are RVGS students using this material?
They are told in advance what classwork is coming up and they are expected to view the corresponding material on the website, following all links they come across. They are encouraged to follow any links on these sites, or to use the VA Tech "Other Resources" or "Yahoo" to look for other sites that would have information on the topic of interest. They were given a list of a few sites at the begining of the school year to help them get started .
As an example, my students are having their test on the electronic structure of the atom this Tuesday. Before we began talking about light and it's associated properties and what this has to do with electrons they were to view the notes on Electronic Sturcture of the Atom.
This same procedure is expected with the up-coming laboratory experiments. A packet containing the first nine experiments was given out at the beginning of school and a second packet containing the rest of the experiments for the year was given to them in January. I have added extra information in the form of graphics, pictures, and links to VA Tech to some of these experiments.
It is quite apparant on lab day which students have gone to the experiment on the web and which haven not.
Response of the students
It has been very positive and many of my students ask before we even get to a topic if I have had time to add anything new to the website. They frequently print off the graphics that accompany some of the material to keep for reference and in case they lose a set of notes, or the lab sheet for a particular lab they can print a new copy off the web.
The original for the Guide Sheet for Moles Problems disappeared before I could make copies for the students, so I printed off one copy from the website and then made copies using the copy machine. I did have them each print off their own copy of The Mole & Chemical Formulas notes instead of providing the hard copy for them.
A formal survey is being developed to obtain concrete data regarding the use of the course material by the Governor's School chemistry students, positive and negative feedback about its usefulness, and suggestions for what they would like to see added.
What do I see for the future?
- Produce interactive lessons where the students can be quizzed on topics related to specific note or as prelab assignments for each experiment.
- Produce short movie clips to demonstrate techniques specific for the different experiments.
- Incorporate pictures of pieces of equipment, and other apparatus such as the example showing the electrolyte.
Acknowledgement and Gratitude to
Dr. Brian Tissue, VPI & SU, developer of the Chemisry Hypermedia Project
National Science Foundation