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Students show off GigaPan projects

May. 24, 2011 @ 12:00 AM

HUNTINGTON -- Students from Cabell, Wayne, Nicholas and Randolph counties gathered Monday evening in the Memorial Student Center at Marshall University to celebrate their technology-based projects.

The projects were based on the GigaPan camera, which is a robotics platform for capturing high-resolution panoramic images with a standard digital camera. The images are then downloaded onto a computer, where the software stitches the pictures together to create a single navigable image.

The projects were sponsored by the June Harless Center for Rural Educational Research and Development, part of Marshall University's College of Education and Human Services.

Projects from the first of a two-year grant funded by the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation were on display by students from Huntington High, Kellogg and Ceredo elementaries, Vinson Middle, Cherry River Elementary in Nicholas County and Beverly Elementary in Randolph County.

One of the projects was done on Africa by third-grade students from Ceredo Elementary. They drew photos of what they thought Africa looked like. Most drew animals such as elephants, giraffes and lions, while others included deserts.

"That's the pictures we thought of Africa," said students Alyson Gue. "We thought they had deserts and didn't have cars and lived in huts (instead of houses)."

They also did a compare/contrast between Cape Town, Africa, a major metropolitan in the continent.

Fifth-graders from Ceredo traveled to Pocahontas County to see the Greenbank Telescope. There, they answered the question of whether E.T. could really phone home. And they found, because of the levels of hydrogen in space, E.T. could actually phone home.

The goal of the projects are to foster a spirit of global citizenship and understanding using technology in a safe forum for young people to share their thoughts and ideas about their world.

For more information, visit www.gigapan.org.

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