Volume 9, Number 3: November 27, 2002
by John Fischer,
IDEAS Project Director
Since its inception in August, 2001, the IDEAS portal website has served over 70,000 educators with resources. Now, with continued support from the University of Wisconsin-System, TEACH Wisconsin, the University of Wisconsin-Extension, and with contributions by new partners, IDEAS is expanding to offer even greater service to Wisconsin's educators.
Over the past three months, IDEAS has experienced a large increase in user activity. This is in large part due to the continual addition of resources by the IDEAS Research Team that currently consists of over 40 Wisconsin educators cataloging resources for the project. In addition, presentations and exhibits at conventions such as the Outreach Scholarship: Partners for Change hosted by Ohio State University, the Wisconsin Educational Association Council's state convention, and the Governor's Wisconsin Educational Technology Conference have all been well attended and help disseminate information about the website.
Some of those 40 researchers are helping populate the IDEAS database with resources in new content areas. Through a partnership with Wisconsin Folks (http://arts.state.wi.us/static/folkdir/index.htm), sponsored by the Wisconsin Arts Board, and also Portal Wisconsin (http://portalwisconsin.org/), a non-profit web site created by the Cultural Coalition to promote culture, arts, humanities and history in Wisconsin, over $5,500 was made available to hire art and music educators for IDEAS.
IDEAS is expanding to more than just additional content areas, too. Now, Wisconsin educators can sign up on-line for a no-cost membership to the site, which will give them access to two useful features:
For more information on the
IDEAS membership features, go to IDEAS and click in the top menu on
the item titled Members.
If you or one of your colleagues are interested in working on this team of EE researchers, please contact John Fischer through the IDEAS website or Mary Vymetal-Taylor. Researchers will receive on-site training and financial compensation for their work.
Also coming to IDEAS in early 2003, thanks to a cross-divisional grant award from UW-Extension, will be searchable, streaming video clips. This cooperative project between Wisconsin Public Television and IDEAS will enable educators to search for specific video related to Wisconsin History and Culture. The project will be showcased as the Wisconsin Council for the Social Studies (WCSS) conference in Green Bay on March 17th and 18th.
The School News, a for-profit newspaper published in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, is showcasing Wisconsin educators' lessons each month. The feature, simply titled, "lesson plans" offers two or three resources available through IDEAS that highlight original lesson plans, websites, and educational resources created by Wisconsin teachers and educators. The School News approached IDEAS about providing these resources on a monthly basis. It is an excellent opportunity to share high-quality content created by our educators. Authors of content that are selected each month provide their permission to reprint the work, and they are given credit in the publication. Any Wisconsin educator with online lessons can submit them to IDEAS for evaluation and cataloging by visiting IDEAS and clicking on the Suggestion Box link.