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Internet expands students view of the outside world

Date Posted: 2010-09-30

Information Technology is reshaping traditional education, and youngsters in classrooms are finding horizons expanding thanks to internet, projectors and digital communications.

Teachers are not restricted to the old black board, eraser and chalk, moving instead to state-of-the-art computer technology and the internet. One school in Ishigaki City has taken the new technology to an even more expansive level, linking its students with a father and son sailing around the world on a yacht to track their adventures. Yashima Elementary School students are using internet telephones to connect with Hiroshi Maeda and his son Yuuki to keep track of the round-the-world travel.

The father-and-son duo is now sailing in Australia, talking with the 67 school children almost daily through Skype internet telephone service. The pair began their travels from Ishigaki Harbor last March. If they stay on schedule, they’re return next January. Children not only can talk to the father and son, but track them on the web cameras. “Ishigaki island ocean is the most beautiful in the world”, Hiroshi told the students this week. It’s like “how often taking a bath?” The answer aboard the yacht, he said, is every fourth day, and then only using four PET bottles of water because of the need for water conservation.

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