Related Research

   This WebQuest is designed for students to be successful.  Using technology and working in cooperative groups allows them more opportunity for a positive learning experience.  Being able to search the Internet for information, create a Power Point presentation, a spreadsheet, and an oral group presentation opens the door for them to feel powerful in what they are able to do.  Their self-confidence will increase as they are learning in ways they never thought possible before, and their academic and social skills begin moving in a positive direction as they are using the information they learn and actually applying it to real-world situations.  The overall goal of this WebQuest is for students to not only learn about recycling, but also to make it a true learning experience that they will be able to keep with them forever.

        The following references provide a research background on the positives of technology and cooperative learning.  Also, there are some sighted documents referring to recycling that are meant to be used by the teacher to provide a real world background for the students.


References

    Barr, C. (2000). The greening of Japan. Christian Science Monitor: [On-line]. available: http://resources.blackboard.com/scholar/course/research/research_frame.jsp
        Being eco-friendly saves energy and contributes to a cleaner environment.  As shown in Japan, living the "green life" by purchasing environmentally safe products is unfortunately not cost effective.  What is shown here is that it is up to the people to want to live in harmony with their environment.  Prices are definitely an obstacle that people must get through in order to do their best to clean up the environment.  Examples are shown of ways in which people are doing just that.  Students could benefit from hearing a summary of this article to actually see that an effort needs to be made by the people.  Recycling programs are definitely the way to go, but only are most successful when people pull together.



    Cooperative Learning. (2000). Volcano World: A Living Laboratory: [On-line]. available: http://volcano.und.nodak.edu/vwdocs/msh/llc/is/cl.html
        This article clearly favors cooperative learning over competitive and individual learning arrangements.  The reasons being that cooperative learning has been said to increase the development of higher-level thinking skills, communication skills, motivation, increased self-esteem, and has a positive effect on social interactions between students.  It outlines elements that are necessary for teachers to pay attention to when implementing this kind of learning environment in their classrooms.  Great suggestions are given for how to create successful cooperative learning situations.


    Cooperative Learning & Technology. (2001). Compaq Educational Resources: [On-line]. available: http://www5.compaq.com/education/k12/resources/cooperative2.html
        This article outlines very well the definition of cooperative learning, provides practical examples of including technology into this kind of learning environment, gives a research background explaining the positives of combining technology and cooperative learning, and gives suggestions for helpful tips and types of technology that can be most valuable for this situation.  The definition and examples provided give a clear understanding of how cooperative learning successfully creates a positive learning environment for many students.


    Dodge, B. (2001). Five Rules for Writing a WebQuest. Learning and Leading with Technology: [On-line]. available: http://206.58.233.20/L&L/archive/vol28/no8/featuredarticle/dodge/index.html
        Bernie Dodge presents a background and defines WebQuest in a very effective and comprehensible way.  She outlines her version of the five rules for writing a great WebQuest, and gives the reader clear suggestions in successfully encountering all five of her rules.  Her resources page is very thorough and extremely helpful for WebQuest beginners.


    Herbst, S. & Fitzgerald, J. (Apr. 2000). Reaping the benefits of waste recycling. Pollution Engineering: [On-line]. available: http://resources.blackboard.com/scholar/course/research/research_frame.jsp
        Many businesses have adopted recycling programs and reuse practices since the awareness of environmental problems.  This article discusses the reasons that businesses start these programs in their companies.  A section also discusses a recycling program entitled "Clean Sweep" that was implemented in 1999 in the Chicago area.  It was a successful program that could be an excellent example for other cities.
        This article can be used to show students that not only companies, but also entire metropolitan cities are working to increase the awareness of environmental problems in our world today.


    Pay-as-you-throw programs encourage communities to reduce waste. (Nov. 2000). Public Management (US): [On-line]. available: http://resources.blackboard.com/scholar/course/research/research_frame.jsp
        Pay-as-You-Throw, a new solid waste management program is one in which customers see a direct economic incentive to reduce the amount of waste they use.  In this program, it costs customers a fee that is based on how much waste they throw away.  A pilot program is underway in Fort Worth, TX.  They have identified goals and given workshops to start other US cities.  A contact name is provided for more information.
        This article can be used to show students that cities in the United States are starting their own programs to reduce the amount of garbage used for the betterment of our environment.


    Using cooperative learning in the technology infused classroom. (1998). Learning Solutions: [On-line]. available: http://www.learnsol.com/coop.html
        Besides defining and providing a background for cooperative learning, this article shows how using technology in this type of learning environment can only be a positive move.  First, the range of student experience with technology will vary so cooperative learning setting allows students to learn and work together to provide the support each one needs.  Also, with so many classrooms limited in the amount of computers available, this type of setting allow more students to work together on one station.  The article provides research background that shows cooperative learning improves academic performance and increases motivation and self-confidence.


        Silverstein, S. (1974). Where the sidewalk ends. New York: Evil Eye Music, Inc.
        Here you will find a collection of poems and drawings by Shel Silverstein.  Included is the poem, Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout Would Not Take The Garbage Out.


    Stahl, R. (2000). The essential elements of cooperative learning in the classroom. ERIC Digests: [On-line]. available:
http://www.ed.gov/databases/ERIC_Digests/ed370881.html
        Stahl uses his research background to support the fact that students in cooperative group settings not only have higher academic skills, but also increase positively on social skills.  He clearly states the elements he believes are necessary for a successful cooperative learning setting from grouping and tasks to how students interact and learn together.  Students are going to not only be academically successful, but are also going to learn how to work with others in a positive way to make the best of their education.

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