Oracle Education Partners With Virginia Department of Ed on Astronomy Initiative
The Oracle Education Foundation (OEF) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Virginia Department of Education to support “Share the Skies,” a statewide initiative that enables students and teachers to study astronomy in the daytime. Participating students and teachers will access and control a telescope located in Australia using Internet tools. Participants will also use OEF’s ThinkQuest program to design and implement astronomy learning projects with peers in other countries.
ThinkQuest is a protected, online learning platform that enables teachers to integrate learning projects into their classroom curricula and students to develop critical 21st century skills, including creativity, communication, teamwork, and technology skills. OEF will provide free professional development to up to 1,200 Virginia teachers involved in the initiative. These teachers will be trained how to incorporate ThinkQuest and 21st century skills instruction into their curricula.
ThinkQuest currently supports 397,000 students in 60 countries. “The Oracle Education Foundation is proud to partner with the Virginia Department of Education on this innovative project,” said Clare Dolan, Vice President, Oracle Corporate Citizenship. “By providing students with access to ThinkQuest, we empower them to broaden their horizons and develop the critical skills they need for life and work in the 21st century.”
“ThinkQuest provides a platform that allows our students to collaborate with peers around the world, particularly in the Southern Hemisphere, on research projects that leverage the capabilities of our Share the Skies initiative,” said Tammy McGraw, Director of Educational Technology, Virginia Department of Education.
The Virginia Department of Education’s Share the Skies project is the nation’s first statewide initiative to enable students and teachers to study astronomy in real-time during the daytime without leaving the classroom. Share the Skies is grounded in the principle that all children should have access to high-quality learning experiences. Astronomy is one of the oldest sciences, affecting every aspect of our lives, and students have few opportunities to explore it. At the most fundamental level, this project is intended to inspire children and those who teach them.
The Oracle Education Foundation is a nonprofit organization funded by Oracle. It delivers ThinkQuest, a widely acclaimed education technology program, to K-12 schools globally.#