The Kopu Project
A cluster of small rural schools in the Thames/Coromandel area want to create an atmosphere where the children develop ‘a life long love of learning’. To achieve this, the Kopu Project aims to transition the schools’ to a 21st century model of teaching and learning where information communications technology (ICT) is a key part in the learning process.
The Kopu Project schools will move away from more teacher-dominated teaching methodologies to ones based more on an inquiry-based learning model, which teaches students to think more independently.
ICT complements inquiry-based learning as it links students to information where they need to apply critical thinking skills to work out an answer or solution for themselves. As ICT is interactive and allows students’ differing approaches to learning, it can help make learning more motivating, enjoyable and relevant. The teacher is still responsible for the learning of their students, but acts in a less directive or dominating role as students take more responsibility for constructing knowledge.
A range of technology will be used during the Kopu Project, including laptops, interactive whiteboards, data projectors and an integrated intranet and extranet called Knowledge NET. Internet-based Microquests will be constructed by teachers, based on the inquiry learning model. The internet will also be a primary source of information for students and teachers.
Parents and caregivers who have access to a computer, will be encouraged to become more involved with their child’s education by logging-on to see what they have been learning, and where possible, contributing to this learning.
Another goal of the project is to ensure the enjoyment that students get out of using ICT to learn ‘rubs off’ on all members of the community and they too will be inspired enough to re-enter the learning environment.
The project will be monitored and reviewed by the Waikato Institute of Technology.