So here’s the thing…when you commit to learning it is a magical process where one exceptional thing can lead to another. This is the experience Bellcate students have had on our journey with EWCed. Everwidening Circles education is a web platform for every kind of student who wants to engage in learning about amazing and positive things that are happening all over the world. Bellcate students are part of a focus group that is testing and giving feedback about the video content and user experience. Many Bellcate classes have built EWCed into class entry routines or have used it for engaging, supplemental content. Founder and all around cool ambassador, Liesl Verderber has been committed to listening, learning and collaborating with Bellcate every step of the way. Last quarter Bellcate students were particularly inspired by a “touchstone video” about micro museums featured on EWCed. Quite by coincidence the same day the students were discussing what they could do to build a micro museum, Kerry Kenny – Bellcate’s Account Manager, explained to the class that she was visiting Dunquin Ireland this summer and wanted to bring their local school a gift from Bellcate. And the “Ireland Project” was born. A class was conceptualized for fourth quarter with a group of 5 Bellcate Students and 3 teachers, to learn about and make a genuine connection with students from Dunquin Ireland. The goal would be to build a micro museum about Vermont and Bellcate School and to have them do the same about Dunquin and their school to send to us. The class has relied on Kerry’s personal connection to Dunquin to make contact with the school. The last time she visited Dunquin was in the 70’s and the small rural school still serves the local students in the one room school house.
The class meets on Fridays and the first 4 classes have been very productive. The class operates like a working lunch. Everyone’s voice is heard and valued and each work session is focused and practical. Thus far we have researched Dunquin, set a timeline for the creation of our micro museum and have started initial work on our seasonal display. This past Friday, Liesl from EWCed joined our work group to add inspiration and valuable networking to our project. Liesl agreed to put our team directly in contact with the creators of the micro museum idea from the original video our class watched. To our class this was an impressive full circle! Please stay tuned as The Ireland Project continues to take amazing shape!