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[HSGC] Video: Student Scientists Finish The Year and Go GREEN! 

The Science in Second Life year has ended and Ms. Rebe's fantastic students are enjoying a much deserved summer break! However, before school ended, everyone participated in one last science adventure - learning about more sustainable building and energy alternatives. They even did independent research and presented their findings both in Second Life and Real Life. The students were absolutely super. Everyone involved was really pleased they had the opportunity to work with such a great group!
Here's just a peek at their final work!

[IDT] Ready, Set...Dig Tanzania! 


In a little over 72 hours, I Dig Tanzania will be officially underway! With much excitement and anticipation, the teens at Global Kids in New York and at the Field Museum in Chicago will come together in Second Life to “dig Tanzania” along with the international research team currently in the field in Tanzania. Over four full days in the virtual Ruhuhu Basin, Tanzania, this team of 19 teens will travel, research, dig and construct fossils becoming virtual paleontologists. During this time, the teens will also explore the sites, sounds, and politics of daily life in Tanzania. This will be the adventure of a (Second) lifetime!

[p4k] Report on GK's Ayiti in Guatemala 

Elena Haliczer, of Games For Change, sent us this amazingly fascinating report about her experience playing and discussing Global Kids' Ayiti with youth in Guatemala at a summit of Central American youth leaders and senior leaders in Central America, many of whom were working in government but who had had backgrounds in, for example, guerrilla military groups:

I realized I never got back to you about my experience playing Ayiti with a group in Guatemala. G4C was asked by the Project on Justice in Times of Transition to talk about games (and unexpectedly social media since nobody else was talking about it, which made me happy since that is my particular expertise) on a panel on using creative strategies to engage youth in social causes.

The event itself "Leaders of the Present/Lideres del Presente" was a summit of Central American youth leaders hand-picked by PJTT and senior leaders in Central America, many of whom were working in government but who had had backgrounds in for example, guerrilla military groups.

The two major themes were youth violence and natural disasters, as those were the two issues all Central American countries face.

[tsl/leadership] Power of Citizenry in Second Life comes to its years end 

Lucky's DTSL Event - Watching the crowd form

We've reached the end of the year here at GK's Power of Citizenry in Second Life program, and an incredible year it's been. I've actually had a number of opportunities to reflect about the program recently in both qualitative and quantitative ways. On the qualitative side, I wrote up a best practice about the project for GK's RezEd virtual worlds and learning hub, and on the quantitative side, for our own internal numbers section of GK's year end board report.

Yesterday I had the opportunity to speak on the USC Public Good in SL Community Challenge on the Metanomics Talk Show in Second Life. Today, the virtual broadcast video service SLCN.tv has released a quicktime video of the entire show.  It's kind of a long download, so I recommend cueing it up and fast-forwarding to around the half-way point to cut to the chase.

The Metanomics host Beyers Sellers introduced me by saying that I was "the primary author of 'Best Practices for Non-profits in Second Life,' a document which many people consider required reading for anyone who wants to bring non-profits into virtual worlds." Nice! I got to speak about games as tools for promoting civic engagement, plugging our "Playing 4 Keeps" program among other GK initiatives.

[vvp] Race to Equality Press Release 

For Immediate Release:

NYC High School Students Produce Important New Film, Race to Equality, Exposing Educational Racism in the U.S., China and Brazil

New York, NY, June 19, 2008 – A diverse group of New York City public high school students, involved in an intensive after school program conducted by Global Kids, have produced an important new animated movie that exposes how racism relates to equal access to education. The film was created in Teen Second Life, a three-dimensional “virtual world” that Global Kids uses to educate youth from around the world about global issues.

Global Kids is the foremost nonprofit organization in New York City specifically dedicated to educating students in underserved communities about international and public policy issues.

[SiSL] Teen's comment on their SiSL experience 

Last week saw Global Kids Global Science class come to a close, led by Tracy Rebe at our High School for Global Citizenship. It was the first OLP program to be developed and run within a classroom setting, mandatory and not optional. The program was designed to use Second Life during most sessions, as well as blogs, flickr, digital comics, and more.

Frankly, we had no idea which parts, if any would work. Now that the program has come to a close, Tracy reports that yes, the students developed an awareness and empathy to global science, environmental and sustainability issues, and did so in a way that was only possible through use of a virtual world.

Equally exciting are the quotes below taken the from the youth's final blog entries regarding their final words on the class. I am sure you will enjoy them as much as we did:

"One thing I learned about science in Second Life is that science is really not that hard. I always thought, "I can't do this," but now I have learned so much, like about sustainability and how I can help to make our earth better. I never knew I was this smart." -- Egypt

"I did not like science before I did this course. I wish I could have Second Life in each class. This is the most amazing thing that I've experienced in high school so far." -- Andrysse

[p4k] AMD launches Changing the Game ad campaign 

This past week saw the launch of AMD's ad campaign for their Changing the Game initiative. The first in a series of print ads ran in the New York Times. There are successive ads to follow in other publications.

AMD_ad-NYTimes.jpg

[press] Educators Get a ‘Second Life’ 

The June 18th article of Education Week online entitled Educators Get a ‘Second Life’, spotlights Second Life and the educational opportunities it has as a virtual learning environment. Andrew Trotter, the author, also spotlights TSL focused educational spaces like Ramapo and Global Kids.

Another major provider on the Teen Grid is Global Kids Inc., a nonprofit group based in New York City that runs after-school programs and hosts activities on Teen Second Life for teenagers at the city’s schools as well as other places.

Activities include service projects, such as raising money for humanitarian aid to the Darfur region of Sudan, and making short movies, called “machinima,” that are filmed on locations and movie sets on the Teen Grid.

Read the full article here.

[media] Linden Lab podcast highlights VVP machinima 

The machinima produced within our VVP program were spotlighted in the recent podcast from Linden Lab, which featured Claudia and Pathfinder speaking on education.

Claudia: I’m thinking of some of the Machinima work that Global Kids is doing. Machinima is creating videos with the inworld camera. It’s hard to set-up a video studio for high school and middle school students. That’s not very accessible to lots of schools and kids all over the world. But I’m seeing just some amazing videos that are being created by kids totally in Second Life.

They’re able to create their characters; they’re creating their sets in Second Life. So, there’s one example of just in Second Life you’ve got resources available to you that are sometimes hard to have in first life. When I think some of the science exhibits that are in Second Life, that people are able to not only bring in to the classroom, but the kids can go into those exhibits.

Thanks Claudia for the mention!