20th June 2003 at 01:00
Milking It.

This section of Oxfam's Cool Planet website focuses on world trade and globalisation, and is primarily a citizenship resource. It lifts the lid on issues such as international trade and unfair trade, and how these can affect the lives of dairy farmers in very different countries.

The site enables students to meet two farmers, one in Jamaica and one in Wales. Students can find out more about their daily routines and how the lives of ordinary people are influenced by large international organisations.

Probably the most refreshing feature of the site is how it seeks to develop students' thinking skills. It stimulates curiosity about international issues and how they affect people locally. It is crammed with interactive quizzes, activities and case studies, all of which are highly differentiated, helping to engage all students and motivating them to find out more. These activities are closely linked to the national curriculum.

With opportunities to do research, analyse viewpoints and develop information and communication technology skills, this site makes for a very useful resource indeed.

Global Teenager Project.


The Global Teenager Project (GTP) was launched in 1999 with the aim of enhancing the ICT and learning skills of pupils in secondary schools, while increasing their knowledge and understanding of other cultures.

Students can take part in lively global classroom debates on the internet.

The GTP has developed its own community of secondary pupils who can exchange information and ideas in a safe, structured "virtual classroom" environment.

More than 3,000 students from 95 schools in 20 countries have entered into the project, and numbers are continuing to rise.

The site itself has three main areas of interest - projects, thematic networks and knowledge sharing. They all help in bridging the cultural divide between students of a similar age in very diverse cultures around the world.

The site offers many exciting projects - such as the Virtual Learning Circles - that are open to all students in the project who want to discuss freely chosen themes.

This is a great concept which initiates and extends global links between students.

Gavin Richards Gavin Richards is a former head of geography in Somerset, now a freelance authortrainer and part-time teacher of geography and ICT at Court Fields Community School, Wellington, Somerset

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