Tuesday, August 24: Reflecting On Your South Africa Research Experience

In three thoughtful and well developed paragraphs, please discuss the following reflection points:

  • Explain the sources you and your partner  used to find the answers. Did you and your partner stray from the pathfinder, and if so, why? What other databases or other resources on the pathfinder did you use and why? Which sources were the most helpful? Were you concerned about accuracy and credibility—why or why not?
  • Briefly discuss the experience of co-editing, researching, and sharing information with Google Docs.  For most of you, this was your first experience using Google Docs in this way.  What worked for you?  Did you encounter any challenges or features using Google Docs?  On a scale of 1-10, what would you rate your comfort and confidence level as of today with Google Docs?
  • What ideas and knowledge from your research stand out to you personally and why?  What ideas from today’s small and large group discussion stand out to you and why?

Please use complete sentences and remember to spell check; we suggest you draft, edit, and save in Google Docs before copying and pasting your response here in this discussion on this class blog.  If you have questions, please see Ms.  Lester or Ms. Hamilton.

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57 comments on “Tuesday, August 24: Reflecting On Your South Africa Research Experience

  1. Sydney S. says:

    We began with the pathfinder’s tool for research. We used the online book called South Africa. It gave us plenty of information for research, but it was very difficult to find the information that was being portrayed. So we did eventually stray away from the pathfinder’s site. We did not use Google though. We used another site called http://www.southafricahistory.com. I recall using this specific website in the past for an assignment in previous years, and our teacher was the one who instructed us to use the website, so I dubbed it a valid source for some of the responses on the worksheet. We used pathfinders for a lot of our answers, but being completely honest; we did stray away to the listed website. The pathfinder’s website was all in all the most helpful. Yes, the alternate website that we visited was helpful, but the pathfinders had the most in-depth and descriptive answers that we could easily form into a well written response for the scavenger hunt. And no, I was not at all worried about the credibility because of the fact that a teacher was the one who recommended the alternate website we used.

    Using Google docs was a great experience. It is a great way to make word documents and it is also a great way to share your ideas and writing with others. It is a great alternative to Microsoft, and it is also a lot of fun. The good format and editing tools were very helpful for what I needed to get accomplished. There were many things that really annoyed me though. Like when I would try to toggle around and click on a specific space in my text, it would either not allow me to do it or just be difficult. But, Google docs have its upsides as I have already listed. Right now I would probably rate my comfort level at a 6 with Google docs. I gave it that rating just because of the multiple personal issues that I have had with it lately. I’m sure that these issues can be resolved in the future, and it may just be network issues. Right now I would rate my confidence level at a 10. I say that because I have a strong belief that this program will eventually be my number one tool and that the hiccups that I am experiencing right now will soon go away. And I am very confident in my ability to work through those slight mishaps and make Google docs work well with my academic life throughout high school and beyond.

    There weren’t any ideas that really stood out to me. I wish I could say otherwise, but most of knowledge I previously learned or it was just another fact, or set of information that my brain stores away for another time. However, some parts of today’s discussion stood out to me a lot. One of my group members had a question about what the apartheid really was. He said that he knew the direct definition but he didn’t really understand the true meaning of what it was. To solve our dilemma, we all banded together to decipher the true meaning of what the apartheid was. We soon came to a conclusion of what the apartheid really was, and shed some light on my group members’ confusions. Another thing that really stood out to me during our group conversation was the differentiating answers that we had about what the definition of what a shanty town was. Some thought it was more of a ghetto, and others more of a poor suburb. We didn’t really agree on anything because we ran out of time, but if we had been given more time, I’m sure we could have gone even more in depth about the question and resolved the conflict between the two differentiating definitions.

  2. price74067 says:

    My partner and I did not stray from the research path finder. Though search engines such as google were available we wanted to use sites that our school found legitimate and resourceful. After reading the questions given to us and reading the index on the page we found it easy to understand, follow, and get the answers we needed to the questions. We only used The Gale Virtual Reference Library and cs-monitor were the most resourceful and easy to read because of the index and the clearly stated information. We thought that this was the best site to use considering it was a real news site and a book online. The most helpful site was Gale. It had all the information in one e-book called Apartheid in South Africa. The index was also an easy way to navigate through the book without having to read more than just the information I needed to know. I was not concerned with credibility or accuracy because it was something that the school provided. I trust that the school checked that before giving it to us as a credible resource.
    As we co-edited there were some problems with understanding how to work it. Although I can see the useful aspects of the co-editing I also got to experience some of the down sides such as the document slowing down and the confusion on who was editing what and when they were editing something. The thing that worked best for Alex and I was she typed all the information that we found and I edited it and read off the information that we had found. It also helped that I could do other things with the document such as publish it where as Alex did not want to publish it for fear of messing up. The fact that we could both see the document and see everything that is new to it without it having to be sent again is a very good aspect though. Other than the fact that google doc.,especially when more than one person is editing, it slows down I am not sure that there is another problem. I think with my comfort on google docs. is a 5 or 6. I feel that it is not much different from Word doc. other than the publish and share factors. As for my confidence level in google docs. I am probably a 10. I am confident that my work is not going to be deleted my other family members.
    I think from the research the thing that stood out the most is how far they have come. We have been out of a segregated world since 1865 and do not seem to have come as far as South Africa has in only 16 years. I think that it is important for us (in the south) to look at how far the South has come and see how they do not seem to look down on each other anymore but living in the south we see that there is still so much racism. Today we did not have time for any real large group discussion but in our small group discussions I found that we have a lot of the same thoughts in common as far as thinking that South Africa has progressed way farther than the South of America seems to have progressed in 150 years apposed to the 16 in South Africa.

  3. Spencer L. says:

    My partner and I used mainly the resources we were instructed to use. The pathfinders were helpful but sometimes it was hard to find every bit of information. Sometimes it did not give us enough so we could respond in a paragraph. The sources that were most helpful were GALE and Sirs because they got to the point and had detailed information. I wasn’t sure if using all the info from what I found and putting it into my own words was good enough to not plagiarize anything I was using. Google seemed to be where I naturally wanted to go off instinct. I have been raised to always go to Google for any information on anything I wanted to learn about. Now that I know about these other pathfinders, I can gather information that I know is accurate.
    Using Google docs was very new for me. I like the whole sharing a document and working on it together with multiple people. It takes the confusion out of emailing tons of drafts and then having to insert all the information into one draft. It also helps me be more careful of what I put out on the internet and revise and edit before publishing. What worked for me was when I had my partner and I working on it at the same time and I would give him suggestions and he could give me suggestions. There are some bugs in Google docs that I have encountered and they seem to keep on happening. Sometimes the program has some lag and slows down significantly. I have also seen when I try to click on a word it will not put the cursor in the right spot where I clicked. On a scale 1 to 10 I would give myself a 7 because I have still not learned all the tools.
    Some of the ideas that have stuck out to me are the real world events that happen in the novel. Apartheid has really stuck out to me and all the horrible things that happen to the natives. The Afrikaners are the problem in the novel and need to be stopped. The shantytowns are what really affect me because the way of life is so desperate and almost hopeless for the natives. And that is why they are committing crimes to survive. I think that what our group talked about was also very interesting and how the world cup has helped South Africa gain a positive self image for them. All the publicity has helped their country to make a stand for themselves.

  4. palmisiano says:

    1. The sources presented to us by Ms. Hamilton were extremely helpful. Usually when the teacher or whom ever gives you the project, shows you research pages. They have no information on the subject. I find out that google gives more variety of information and credibility. This is the one time I have found out that the pathfinders actually provided all of the information needed. Though the process of finding the right passage was quite difficult, I figured out that the find bar served a lot of help, in finding the key words. The Apartheid of South Africa definitely helped the most out of them, but we found some answers in As World Cup 2010 kicks off, where South Africa stands 16 years after apartheid. Most of the question required some thought, but the pathfinders reduced the stress in finding the right credible source.
    2. The experience with Google Docs was quite frustrating. First spell check, calibration, sharing, then finally deleting the whole blog. We could not get it to cooperate at all the first day, nothing seemed to work. The second day we switched computers and truly figured out the marvels of Google Docs. There are so many features Microsoft Word has, but for free. Everything you can look for will be there, and in working order. It worked very well for us and sharing it helped speed up the process, and time it would take to do individually then e-mail it, or have it lost. On a scale of 1-10 I rate Google Docs an 8. Only because of the troubles it can have at some time.
    3. South Africa has a wide variety of events that happened in it’s history. The scavenger hunt really provided a basis on what had happened. Before that day, I actually never knew what the apartheid was sadly. Doing this research helped me to see the troubles it caused and the struggle to end it. In today’s small groups we talked about how Nelson Mandela was put into jail just for trying to make peace. The thought of that just isn’t right. Since when is doing the right thing so bad. Also in the large groups it caught my attention that white people treated some black with respect, rather than the others who beat, hurt, and even killed other black citizens.

  5. price74067 says:

    My partner and I did not stray from the research path finder. Though search engines such as google were available we wanted to use sites that our school found legitimate and resourceful. After reading the questions given to us and reading the index on the page we found it easy to understand, follow, and get the answers we needed to the questions. We only used The Gale Virtual Reference Library and cs-monitor were the most resourceful and easy to read because of the index and the clearly stated information. We thought that this was the best site to use considering it was a real news site and a book online. The most helpful site was Gale. It had all the information in one e-book called Apartheid in South Africa. The index was also an easy way to navigate through the book without having to read more than just the information I needed to know. I was not concerned with credibility or accuracy because it was something that the school provided. I trust that the school checked that before giving it to us as a credible resource.
    As we co-edited there were some problems with understanding how to work it. Although I can see the useful aspects of the co-editing I also got to experience some of the down sides such as the document slowing down and the confusion on who was editing what and when they were editing something. The thing that worked best for Alex and I was she typed all the information that we found and I edited it and read off the information that we had found. It also helped that I could do other things with the document such as publish it where as Alex did not want to publish it for fear of messing up. The fact that we could both see the document and see everything that is new to it without it having to be sent again is a very good aspect though. Other than the fact that google doc.,especially when more than one person is editing, it slows down I am not sure that there is another problem. I think with my comfort on google docs. is a 5 or 6. I feel that it is not much different from Word doc. other than the publish and share factors. As for my confidence level in google docs. I am probably a 10. I am confident that my work is not going to be deleted my other family members.

    I think from the research the thing that stood out the most is how far they have come. We have been out of a segregated world since 1865 and do not seem to have come as far as South Africa has in only 16 years. I think that it is important for us (in the south) to look at how far the South has come and see how they do not seem to look down on each other anymore but living in the south we see that there is still so much racism. Today we did not have time for any real large group discussion but in our small group discussions I found that we have a lot of the same thoughts in common as far as thinking that South Africa has progressed way farther than the South of America seems to have progressed in 150 years apposed to the 16 in South Africa.

  6. Eric Rhonehouse says:

    Me and my partner used some of the pathfinders and one other website. The website we used was Wikipedia. The reason for the use of Wikipedia was because of the layout of that website. Wikipedia has a table of content for every subject matter and it sub-categorizes the information. This makes it easier and faster to gather the information for the questions. However, we did use some of the pathfinders like Apartheid of South Africa and Africa: An Encyclopedia for students. These pathfinders also brought about the information easily and fast. Credibility was not the most important thing to us because we are so used to using resources such as Wikipedia. While we were answering the questions credibility did not even cross our minds. I think it is an old habit that needs to be extinguished.

    Google docs is interesting. Its not as good as word in most cases, but has some capabilities that word does not. The thing I find cool about Google docs is that you can have multiple people editing it at one time. That feature can be a blessing or a curse. When we all type at once the system bogs up and freezes. That makes my work harder. Another hick-up Google docs has is that when your typing and you click to correct a word or click to scroll the typing bar stops typing when you come back to it. I have found that the solution to that is to click somewhere on on the body of your writing. This is just a minor inconvenience, but can get really annoying really fast. On a 1-10 comfort ability scale of Google docs I am about a six or a seven.

    Upon researching I learned that South Africa was under apartheid for 46 years. Seems like a long time to be racially oppressed throughout your community. Later I went home to research how long the United states had racial segregation after the abolishment of slavery. It turns out that the United States had racial segregation for about 100 years after slavery was abolished. I am not sure how different the two were from each other, but I know they brought great sorrow and conflict to their country. In the group we discussed how South Africa need the publicity it got from the world cup. Before the world cup all you heard about in South Africa was the crime. Now that a major event has taken place there it will overshadow some of the negative topics of South Africa. I now hope that South Africa can build off the world cup with more significant and positive acts.

  7. Sloan A. 4th says:

    Meghan and I use Gale, SIRS, and Christian Science Monitor to obtain information on South Africa. From Gale we used an online book called Africa: An Encyclopedia for Students along with articles regarding apartheid. SIRS helped us to find information concerning apartheid. Lastly, the Christian Science Monitor website helped us to find an article on how Africa has changed since apartheid. All of the information on the pathfinder was so helpful that there was no reason for Meghan or me to go to Google or any other websites. All of the sources on the pathfinder were very helpful, but if I had to choose one source that helped us the most it would have to be the online book from Gale. The main reason is because it is an encyclopedia and holds heaps of information about Africa. Also, all of the other articles were directed towards one topic while an encyclopedia includes many different topics. I was not concerned about credibility because trusted people wrote all of the websites. Plus, Gale and SIRS have copyrights listed on the same page as your article. All in all, the websites that were given on the pathfinder were incredible and gave us all the information that was needed to answer the questions.

    Meghan and I used Google Docs to share information about each question that we answered. It was great ways to share information because we could each access the document along with edit it. Some positives were that we could edit the document at the same time. Furthermore, we could access the document and work on it at home without a flash drive. Some negatives were when Meghan and I were on at the same time it is much slower. Also, if your internet server is down you cannot reach the document. On a scale from one to ten I would have to rate my conformability with Google Docs at a nine. The main reason is because I have used Google Docs in the past year and can navigate around the site well. However, I do not understand everything with the site. For example, I do not know what all of the symbols on the tool bar mean. To sum up, Google Docs is an excellent way to complete a research project with a partner.

    During the research project I learned much about the country of South Africa. Some information that stood out to me during my research was the Boer War, apartheid, and Soweto Riots. Before, the project started I knew nothing about the Boer War. It was fascinating to me that the white Africans declared war on the British. Also, I knew a little about apartheid, but I did not know the extent it went into. While researching I came across how the blacks were not even allowed to travel in certain areas, and how they had their property taken away from them. That is mind blowing to me because the whites were the minorities how could they take over such a big group? The Soweto Riots was an event that I had never heard of until researching South Africa. The Soweto Riots were schools all over South Africa that were against the Soweto Massacre and protesting. The police opened fire on some of the students and killed at least twenty-three. Again, this fascinated me because how could you kill children? Then, later the children started the schools and government buildings on fire. Some information that stood out to me in the discussion was about the Boer War and how Africa has changed since apartheid. Today, Maria pointed out that the Boer War was started because the British were trying to take over parts of Africa. Also, South Africa has changed drastically since apartheid. However, someone pointed out how there are still problems with the school systems. In conclusion, this research project has broadened my horizon in history along with South Africa.

  8. In researching for the South Africa scavenger hunt I did not use any other source other than Galileo. I used this pathfinder because you can find accurate information on it in the same way you do on google. The only difference is that you don’t have to sift through all of the information that is not true or is a gag. Galileo uses only credited authors and researchers that know what they are talking about. I found all the information I needed and then some. Galileo has become a valuable research tool for me, and I will be sure to use for future projects. However, while I stayed on the pathfinders, my partner went to Google.

    Google docs is a new experience for me. I’ve used a couple time before this class, but I never used it enough to get the feel for it. While Google docs can be useful and safe time, I much prefer Microsoft. When we were doing the co-editing, I found it very hard to type and fix things when my partner was typing too. Also, spell check works a lot better on Microsoft, and Microsoft loads much faster than Google docs. I would prefer to email the documents back and forth, even if we cannot edit at the same time. Even though I don’t care for Google docs, I would rate myself at about an 8 in understanding Google docs.

    Some ideas that stood out to me from my research was South Africa has been through so much. First they have the British wanting to talk away their homeland because there’s gold there. Next, they started getting treated badly. Apartheid starts to set in, and the land dissolves into chaos. No one is happy. South Africa fights for what’s theirs, and eventually they win. It wasn’t until just recently with the World Cup, that South Africa was starting to be seen in a new light. They are trying to improve themselves and their country.

  9. Catie B. says:

    Using the research pathfinder, my partner (Emily M.) and I used the Gale Virtual Reference Library. We found everything we needed quickly and efficiently using the pathfinder. Because of this, we never strayed from it and never had to use other means to find our answers. The Virtual Library was very helpful because we had millions of nonfiction works at our fingertips, and all we had to know was what to search for. We were never concerned with accuracy or credibility for this reason.

    Using Google Docs was very efficient because my partner and I were able to edit side-by-side and we were able to break up the work, as well as assist each other. This saved a lot of stress because we didn’t have to email dozens of different versions of the document to each other. We were also able to “chat” while we worked, so we knew what to do to stay on track. Google Docs is like a simplified version of Microsoft Word, so I was very comfortable with where everything was and what buttons did what. It was very interesting how Emily and I could both work on the document from different locations. One thing that bothered me about the program was when you would click on something and the cursor would end up a few lines above where you clicked. Also, I just noticed that while the program corrects spelling, it doesn’t correct grammar, and also doesn’t automatically capitalize and correct certain words (i.e. because and I), and this could be a little annoying at times. Other than that, we don’t have any complaints. On a scale of one to ten, I would give Google Docs around a six and a half.

    Learning about apartheid was very interesting to me. I noticed that there were several similarities as well as a few differences between racism in the US and South Africa. Before, I thought that South Africa’s apartheid was a lot like America’s Jim Crow laws of the middle 1900s. After finding excerpts from non-fiction books about it, I found out I was very wrong. Apartheid was much more harsh and segregation was much more strict and more things were segregated. It also lasted much, much longer than segregation in America, and has just been abolished in the past couple decades. Like in America (NAACP), there was organization defending the rights of blacks in South Africa (African National Congress) Racism is still much more problematic today in South Africa than it has been in the United States for years. Learning about Nelson Mandela and the work that he has done to free South Africa’s blacks and the sacrifices that he has made throughout his life was very inspiring. He reminded me of Martin Luther King, Jr., but was also different because he became the president of South Africa.Both of these men spent many years in jail for fighting for what they believed in.

  10. Austin D, 4th says:

    My partner and I searched most of our questions on Google and them on a variety of sites. We did stray away from the pathfinder without even thinking about it almost like a natural instinct to use Google. I guess we did this without thinking because were so used to doing that in the past on any other research assignment. We found a variety on of sources that helped us; one of the more helpful sites was encyclopedia.com. We did not even think about the how credible the source was, I guess it’s just something that didn’t cross our minds. It could’ve very well been false and we were not paying enough attention to that.
    I thought the Google docs was very much like Microsoft word when it came down the main concept. I do like how easy it is to publish things to the internet on Google docs. I like Microsoft word more because it is easier to use and it seems like it has more to help you and more options. On a scale of 1 to 10 of how comfortable I am with it I would say I’m about a 6 or a 7. I felt like a new what I was doing but I did not know everything about the site yet. I think as we use it more and more I will get more comfortable with it.
    I was very surprised to see how hard Africans have had it throughout history. Their history gives a very negative outlook on their country for the rest of the world. I think it was very good that the world cup was there this summer beside the fact that there was some crime. It helped pick up the countries popularity and it made them seem like a better place from what their past was. I think they did a great job and really cleaned up their act as a country.

  11. Jordan G says:

    My partner, Jessica, and I decided to split the work in half to maximize our time and efficiency. She worked on numbers 1-6, while I answered 7-11. While we tried to stick to the pathfinder, we found it hard to come up with enough information or relevant articles to answer all our questions. So I was a bad sheep and strayed from the Pathfinder. However, while I did use Google, I made sure to check my sources and see that they were official. All my websites were credited and some were even referred to by other schools. Finding the information on Google was just so much easier and proficient. It is also faster and if you know where to look, it’s reliable. When not using Google, I got a lot of my information from the links on our class website. They were helpful and helped to answer quite a few of my questions.
    This was my first time using Google documents. So far it has been a love-hate relationship. I did like the way that you could see the updates that your partner was making, it made sharing the work so much easier. Normally I would have had to e-mail it to them. The one problem that I kept encountering was the delay in typing. It took close to ten seconds for my words to show up. The delay led to numerous spelling errors that I had to keep correcting. There was also difference in the area where I wanted to move my mouse, and the place where it put it. I had to click much lower then where I wanted my cursor to be and it created confusion. I still prefer Microsoft Word and on a scale of 1-10 I would give Google documents a 5. The only reason it scored even that high is because of the ability to share my work with my partner.
    What I realized from our large and small groups was the difference in the answers we all obtained. They differed in content and length. While some of us had found plenty of information to write about, others only found smidgens of facts to answer with. This showed to me how differently we all research and find information.

  12. Emily H. 4th says:

    The sources that we used were each found on the list given to us. The pathfinders proved to be very useful. The main pathfinder site that I used was the third pathfinder, Apartheid of South Africa. Most of the information we needed was found on this one site. I was not concerned about credibility because I knew that the sites I was using had been checked and approved by the teacher. When I had trouble finding an answer, I would ask my neighbor if they could point me in the right direction which also helped in the research.
    Co-editing allowed my partner and I to work faster and correct each others mistakes. Being able to see what my partner was doing I was able to know what I did not have to work on because I knew that my partner had already taken care of it allowing us to work less. I like that Google Docs saves itself every few seconds making sure that no work is lost is the computer were to malfunction. It also helps to be able to access the document without having to email it or keep up with a flash drive. While at school I found it difficult to edit because every time i tried to click a specific spot it would got to a different spot. However, once I started typing at home the problem was solved. I would rate Google Docs as an 8. It is highly useful, but I have found different problems with it even though I have only been using it for a short while.
    Personally I found it interesting that there were dutch settlers in South Africa. I do not remember reading about it. I also found it interesting that the Dutch were considered Afrikaners. I thought that the Afrikaners would be the natives of the area. I did not find anything else that really stood out to me.

  13. fields93943 says:

    I used the pathfinders given to us. There was an amazing article describing the changes South Africa has made over the years. There was also a link to an online book that was packed full of information. It gave a complete history of apartheid and of the colonists that settled in the area. I did not stray from the pathfinder. The information I found was more than enough to answer the questions. Personally, I was not concerned with the credibility of the information. I had used many of the resources before on various projects and papers. I also used another pathfinder to verify the information. That way I knew it was correct.

    This was in fact my first time using Google Docs. I was absolutely blown away! It was amazing that my partner and I could type and edit are paper at the same time. We could even chat if we had a question. I also like the fact that you can publish the document as a website. It’s really not that different from Microsoft Word, so I didn’t have any problem arise. On a scale of one to ten, I would rate myself at maybe a seven or eight. I’m getting more comfortable the more I use it. I’m sure by the end of the school year I’ll be at a ten.
    One thing that stuck out to me in my research was what the Europeans were looking for when they settled in the area. They were very power hungry. This was an unsettled land full of resources, which would just increase their power. Another fact I found interesting was the fights that took place over the gold in the area, such as the Boer War. When I first heard the word ‘Afrikaner’, I never would have thought it to be a European colonist. Finding out about the horrible conditions of the shantytowns was also eye opening. It was also notable to find out how South Africa still faces many problems today even though it’s come along way. Many people still face the poverty had during times of apartheid.

  14. ben f says:

    South Africa Research Blog

    My partner and, for the most part, stayed with the pathfinders. They are proven sources that are creditable, already sited, and easily assessable. The information was easy to find, and presented in an easy to find way. My partner showed me how to search the page for specific words, which really helped. We mostly used Gale Online Database. It had a wide verity of texts and passages that was full of helpful information. We really didn’t have to worry about the credibility of the document. Most, if not all documents, proved to be correct, even when checked against other sources.
    Google Docs was a new experience for e, and I didn’t like it much. The ability to work on it at the same time as my partner, both of us being able to edit it, and it being right on the internet, was extremely useful, but I still like Microsoft word better. There were times when Google would completely freeze, and wouldn’t save. Plus an internet connection has to be present. I was ok with the way Google Docs presented itself. It was like Microsoft word, but it wasn’t as easy to type in, and the face of it wasn’t as comfortable. All in all, I would rate Google Docs a six out of ten. There is a lot of good with Google Docs, but Microsoft Word feels better.
    During our discussion, we talked about apartheid. It also came up that the person most responsible for the ending of apartheid was Nelson Mandel. He was put in jail for twenty years, was freed and shortly become President. This man must have had great powers of forgiveness, intelligence, and leading skills. This man was willing to help, and forgive a country that had thrown him away for years. He was willing to help them fix their country, and to fix all the problems. He was so smart that he was able to fix a lot of the problems that South Africa was having at the time. All in all, he was a great man, who did a lot for his country, and I really respect that.

  15. Autumn J. 7th says:

    My partner and I used the resources that were given to us by Mrs. Hamilton on the Unquiet Library Website. We did not stray from the databases given to us, because the resources given to us were enough to answer the questions. In addition, my partner and I did not stray from these resources, because they had a lot of data that we could use to elaborate on the questions in a thoughtful and intelligent manner. The resources that were most helpful were the online books and encyclopedias. These resources were helpful, because they gave the information in a consolidated place instead of having to look in many different places on the same website for the information. We also used a database called “SIRS.” This database was very helpful, because it listed many different types of information, and it was very easy to read and understand. Accuracy and credibility were not an issue, because the information came from credible websites, and they were given to us by a reliable source. We also did not worry about credibility of these resources because they were of quality work and referenced many ideas that we already knew to be true.

    Using Google Docs was a pretty easy and a very good learning experience. Sharing information on Google Docs was a little scary and difficult to understand, but after using it awhile it became a lot more understandable. In addition, it helped a lot to ask questions, because it reiterated how to use the resource and make it work to our advantage. Since it was our first time using Google Docs, we were lead through the first time to make sure we understood the usage of the resource. I really liked and disliked the way that it auto-saves your document when you make a change to it. I like it, because if your computer shuts down, then your work is saved. However, I don’t like this feature, because it makes me stress over if my work it’s correctly save, and if it will pull up when I try to access it again. Another feature that I like is the easy access from any computer anywhere in the world. It makes it easy to access anywhere and anytime the document or presentation maybe needed. I would give Google Docs 7 out of 10, because it is fairly easy to use and access, but it still makes me nervous saving my work on the open internet.

    The idea in the research that stood out the most to me was the idea of the apartheid and racism of South Africa. It really made me think about how it was back then, and how much it has changed since then. In addition, I learned really how cruel the apartheid was against the black, and how much they isolated the colored people. Racism in South Africa was made a law unlike any other place in the world. I could not believe the way they made these people live, and how they treated them like animals instead of human beings. The discussions today in class lead me to the same conclusion that the research did. One exception to this is that we also talked a lot about the Europeans, and how they invaded South Africa when they had no right to do so. We discussed the rights of the blacks before and after the apartheid, and we also talked about their rights today. These ideas stood out to me, because they were very interesting and made me think deeply.

  16. Anna D 4th says:

    Anna Dunn
    Honors Lit
    24 August 2010
    Reflections on South African Research
    In the scavenger hunt we conducted to research South Africa, my partner and I stuck to the websites provided for us by Ms. Hamilton. The GALE database was the easiest source to use by far so we used it for the majority of our answers. In addition to GALE, we also used an article called “As World Cup 2010 kicks off, where South Africa stands 16 years after apartheid”. This site helped to provide information on the last question about the effects the World Cup had on the way the world views South Africa. Though using Google and other search engines would have been easier, we stayed within the starting points given to us and tried to find all of the information. GALE was the most helpful because it underlines key words that help to attract attention to the facts within the text. Being concerned about accuracy and credibility was not a problem for us because we did not stray from the sites that were originally provided. I believe that if my partner and I had more time to complete the assignment, we would have used Google to find answers and give more detail. Google gives a quick and easy answer to most questions without the long processes of searching and reading through web pages. I understand why many people ended up resorting to Google and other search engines, and there have been many times on previous assignments that I have also used Google for the quick and easy answer. When using Google, thoughts of if what I am reading is accurate and credible, never enter my mind. However, now that it has been brought to my attention that there are many sites with false information on the web, it makes me wonder if I have given false information to any teachers on previous assignments.
    Using Google Docs for the first time was a different experience for me than I am used to. Because I am not used to it at all, I much prefer Microsoft Word over Google Docs. Using Google Docs was much more complicated than Microsoft Word as well as a little bit slower in showing what was typed. Sharing the document with my partner was the only feature that I think I could learn to appreciate. However, for this scavenger hunt, we did not use the sharing feature at all. Instead we worked on each question together and only one of us actually typed our answers into the document. Because I have been taught my whole life to use Microsoft Word, I am much more at ease when using it. Google Doc’s layout and different features are difficult for me to navigate and use. On a scale of one to ten, I would rate my confidence level and comfort with using Google Docs around a one and half. If given a choice between Microsoft Word and Google Docs, I would choose Word every time. Because the sharing feature could prove helpful if I was working with more than one other person besides myself, an exception to the previous statement could occur.
    Throughout my research on the country of South Africa, many ideas stand out to me as being significant. The main idea is that the same thing occurred here in our own country on two different occasions. In South Africa, the natives were forced into labor for the whites who came in and dominated the country. This happened in America centuries before when Europeans came to settle the New World. They took over all the Native American empires and made the natives work the land for them. After almost destroying their culture and taking all their land from them, the Europeans took away the rights of the natives. This very same white domination occurred in South Africa as well. In a similar fashion, when segregation was the law in the United States, blacks were looked down upon and treated unfairly just as they were in South Africa, post World War II. In the large class discussion today, I was also made more aware of the fact that many sources on the web are unreliable. It made me think about how much false information I have read in the past and how much of that false information I still consider to be correct. When conducting research from now on, I will be much more careful about the sources I use and be sure the check their credibility.

  17. Megan D says:

    My partner and I used the databases Google and the database dealing with the Apartheid. I found that website semi helpful. Honestly I used Google a lot. I find it easier to get the answer off Google most of the time. You can usually just type the question in and the search engine finds an answer. To be honest I just like to complete the assignment and go straight to where I can get it done quicker. I would like to say that all my answers on the scavenger hunt are accurate, but they are probably not. If I can’t find the answer I just go with the best thing that I’ve found. I also don’t like reading the articles on the page. I usually click the search button to search on this page for a key word in the question and see if I can find the answer that way.

    I thought it was really cool how my partner and I could edit our paper at the same time. It allowed us not to go through the process of having to copy and paste. Once that was done we would then have to put it an email and then finally put the product together. It’s neat to see how the technology has come this far in Google. I also liked how Google Docs saves your paper every few seconds. This allows you to not have to worry about it, or if something happens while you were typing you always know that the document was saved. My partner and I did have a few problems with Google Docs. One was that the mouse was not clicking on the correct line instead it was clicking on the line above. Also the document was a little box, but we were able to make it bigger. I would rate Google Docs with a 7. It’s not something I would use over Microsoft Word, yet.

    I learned that it was a tough time in South Africa. Nelson Mandela was a role model for people. He got out of jail so that he could run for president. I also learned that the Soweto Riots was a hard time for people. Young students were killed by police men because they were protesting. Police men are supposed to protect you not kill you for not even being violent. The time of the apartheid was very crazy and hard to imagine. However South Africa has changed for the better. Since then things have calmed down for the country. They just hosted the World Cup and that allowed them to give the world their real imagine.

  18. brannon53937 says:

    My partner and I did not use the sources on the pathfinder. We used Google to find all of our answers. There was not any specific reason we used Google. It’s just a force of habit. We never really gave a second thought to accuracy or credibility. We were mainly concerned with finding the answer quickly.
    I like using Google Docs a lot. It makes it so much easier to share the information I find with my partner. I like how my partners and I can all work on the assignment at the same time. This was not the first time I had used Google Docs though. I used it last year in Lit as well. It worked better for me this time because I knew more about how to use it. I didn’t have many troubles with the Google Docs. The Doc did however have a one editing glitch. When we clicked on a line, the cursor was a few lines above where we clicked. I would rate my comfort and confidence level with Google Docs at a 9.
    The question that stood out the most to me was number ten. The Soweto riots are very interesting to me. I think those teachers and students were very brave to stand up for what they believe in. Today’s study groups were interesting because everyone mostly had the same answers. Also everyone used Google. I found that interesting.

  19. carr54094 says:

    In our research scavenger hunt, Mrs. Hamilton filtered out some websites from our search engines at school. My group, Anna and I, stuck to these sites mostly because they were already laid out for us. All of our information came from the search engine GALE. I personally like using Gale the most. When you search for something, in all of the articles it brings up, it highlights what you searched. That really comes in handy when multiple articles with multiple pages show up. When reading the articles, it didn’t even cross my mind if they were not credible sources. Gale is a search engine that has already filtered through articles that would not be suitable. It is meant to be an engine that schools can rely on for students and their projects etc.
    Last week was my first time using Google Documents. I think it is the most frustrating program. However, it was nice being able to work on it the same time as my partner. At first it was really confusing getting used to all the markers on the screen but once I got used to it, it wasn’t so hard. My partner and I found it most useful sitting next to each other while working. While we were both looking up the answers, one at a time we typed. Other than just getting used to it, there were no complications I encountered with Google Documents. On a scale of 1-10 my comfort and confidence is pretty much a 9. It is so similar to Microsoft Word, that there isn’t much I have to relearn. Most likely, unless we are required to use Google Documents, I will probably stick to Microsoft Word.
    In the research it really stood out to me that most of the things South Africa went through were similar to what the United States went through. Similar to Apartheid, the United States went through segregation and the John Crow laws. This stood out not because I was a part of the time period when this stuff took place, but it is a part of my history and I know the consequences that come from it. The United States is still mending wounds from situations that occurred so I know South Africa will have some patch ups to do. Nelson Mandela was a man of great vocal power. His role in the advancement of South Africa was very vital. Thinking of where South Africa would be with out him, they would be nowhere close to the progress they have attained. I think this also stood out because someone had the courage to stand up for what he believed in. I think it takes guts to stand out from a crowd and that is something that is very admirable. South Africa has recently experienced the World Cup. This contribution has brought much good publicity to their country boosting their economy slightly. This kind of publicity is exactly what they needed. The World Cup is something that everyone can relate to, even if soccer is not your thing, it all comes down to friendly sports competition and supporting your country.

  20. Amber R says:

    My Partner and I used the Lib guides that were provided by our Media Center Specialists. It was very efficient and smart to use the Lib guides provided because they contained all the information at just the click of a button. All six of these websites were accurate compared to each other on the various subjects that were covered. Yes you did have to read through the articles to find the information but i felt it was accurate, considering it had been approved already. This freed my mind from stress about fault information. My favorite one to use though was The Gale Virtual Reference Library, because it was easy to navigate through and it is very easy to read. You could navigate simply by using keywords and the index that showed where the specific information needed was. This made it a stress free assignment .

    I myself had never used Google Documents before, so this was a first for me. I enjoyed the benefits of editing at home without the hassles of flashcards or emailing the project back and forth between home and school computers and my group member. I fill this was an easier way to go about group work, i also enjoyed being able to see the instant changes my partner was making. This allows you to see if they are working on it or if they have just blew it off. The chat on the page is just as helpful, you can communicate when you have questions about the topic of the paper. I would rate this as an eight out of ten, simply because i love it! It does frighten me due to it is an Internet document and could become lost, by Internet glitches or hi-cups.

    I personally was surprised by the fact that the blacks were treated the way there were by the whites in Africa. With Africa being the Blacks home, i assumed there would not be any racial status based by the Whites. I disagree with the actions of the Whites because they are in the homelands of the blacks. Its been many years and still to this day not only in Africa but here in our own country, the Blacks are still treated unfair. The thoughts of the shantytowns remind me of the homeless in our large cities today. Living with shelter already there and protecting themselves from the weather and seasonal changes shows the hard ships that the blacks then and then homeless today face each and everyday. Its more in my opinion then any one person could handle.

  21. Megan B.
    7th Period
    I mostly used the resources Mrs. Hamilton gave us to complete the questions. I did go into google a few times, because I think it is easier. It just seems quicker than searching through all of the pathfinders on the website. For the questions, I mostly used Gale and SIRS. Gale was most helpful. I found all most all of the answers to my questions on the Gale database. When I was using Gale, I wasn’t concerned about accuracy or credibility because it is supposedly a reliable source. Some things that I searched for on google may not have been the most accurate though; it was not a worry of mine.
    I think google docs is a good place for all of your documents. It makes it really easy to edit with your partner, rather than emailing back and forth. The only challenge I had was getting the page to the correct size. It seemed like every time I opened the page, it was the wrong size and I had to go back and fix it. It was slightly frustrating to have to continue doing that. I also realized that whenever I clicked somewhere, it wouldn’t go where I clicked, it would go a few rows up. So, I had to use the arrows instead, which was inconvenient. I would rate google docs about a 9, because it had a few issues.
    The fact that people were living in shantytowns stood out to me. A shantytown is a town where people live in terrible conditions. Some, and most, even live in cardboard boxes. I think that that is a very sad situation. During our class discussion, we talked about the World Cup, and how South Africa has progressed since back then. I think them hosting the World Cup was really good for them. It allowed the South Africans to bond, and blend. One bad thing though is that the government is pushing opportunities for the black people and the white people have trouble getting jobs. I think there should be more of an equality there.

  22. Emily M says:

    I worked with Catie Blackwell. I did not stray from the pathfinder. I know that Catie did not either. One of the questions was tough and I thought about straying. I mainly used the Gale Virtual Reference Library on the Pathfinder. I could just type in a keyword and it would find online sources with those words in it. I trusted this source because it is a recommended site and it was on the Pathfinder. The Gale Virtual Reference Library was the most helpful to me because it did not give excess amounts of information, but rather went right to the point.
    Catie and I split up the work on these questions—odds for me, evens for Catie—and Google Docs helped a lot. We could both answer the questions and edit the document at the same time. If we needed something, the chat bar on the side of the screen helped us communicate. It was easy to keep track of what was being done. Also, we stayed on track because we did not have to talk to each other and distract one another. One thing I noticed about Google Docs was that it does not let you click directly on the words, which became difficult to work with after a while. Besides that, I’d rate Google Docs with an 8.
    When I researched, a few things stood out to me. One was how racist the people who weren’t even from Africa were towards the Native African People. Also, it showed me how hungry for wealth people are. For example, the Boer War was fought over control of the gold in South Africa. In the groups, I realized that Ashley and Hannah were very in depth and Catie and I were a little shallow. When I put our answers and their answers together, we had the perfect research questions.

  23. Nathan B says:

    Me and my partner did not use the pathfinder tools. We started out using some of the databases, but we found it easier just to google the topics to find the answers. we manly used google and wikipedia. This was the general view of my inquire circle too. We all found the databases were very complicated and hard to use. This could be accredited to the fact that we have not used them much in our other classes. It could also be just because we did not give them a fair chance. We did not really think about credibility, because we haven’t had previous problems with it. we also did not think about it at the time.Me and my partner need to work on using more trustworthy sites.
    I really enjoyed using google docs. I saw many advantages in it over word. You can access it from any computer without a flash drive. It also allows you to share it with your group. It also saves automatically. For just straight typing google docs is better than Microsoft word, but google docs lacks a couple of features Microsoft has. It does not have a very good way to add pictures and some extra elements to a project. I only encountered one problem with sharing. My partner had trouble viewing the file after i shared it with him. After you get used to google docs it is a very use full tool. I give my comfort level with google docs a 6 out of 10.
    Many facts stuck out to me about South Africa. The fact that the dutch were just looking for an eastern trade route. Then they started acting better than the natives, and they went to war. The Europeans are at fault for almost all of South Africa’s modern problems. the have oppressed them for so long that they are so poor they cannot buy food. On the flip side South Africa’s government and other beneficial factors. They brought inventions that helped South Africa. They also helped them from being attacked as long as they obeyed the Europeans. The presence of the Europeans was mostly harmful to the natives but they also helped the natives.

  24. benmcfarlin says:

    For the South Africa research questions, I used google.com. Although the pathfinders are supposed to have better and smarter answers than google.com, the pathfinders are a pain to use. They are not as easy to use because your search doesn’t always come up with results, causing you to constantly type in new search terms until one has the content that you need. Google.com on the other hand, has a broad range of results when you type in a search term. Unlike the pathfinders that only use “trusted” sources, google searches the entire web. I don’t have a problem using google at all. I can usually tell if a source is legit or not. Its just common sense, if it looks like the type of editing that you would see in a book and the information isn’t crazy, then I normally trust it. I’ve never had a problem with getting invalid information from a source for google. I think google is a great source of information that we should use more often in school. I just think that each student should use common sense when selecting information to use.

    I really liked google docs in some aspects. But I think it could use some work in some areas. The ability to simultaneously work on a project with a partner is a great idea. However, things like not offering spelling suggestions and the typing bar not showing up where you click make it kind of confusing to use. Right now I would say I’m at a 7 for comfort wise using google docs. However, if google docs could fix some of these small problems, I would love it. They already have the right idea, now they just need to improve on it. Although I am used to using Microsoft Word, I would probably switch to google docs if it was improved. Google docs is a great way to work on a group project. So, I am happy that Ms. Lester and Ms. Hamilton showed me it.

    In our small group today, I thought it was interesting that many students prefer google. I was surprised that other students felt the same way about google and the pathfinders. We also talked about our answers to our questions, and how each person answered them, which I found helpful. I liked having the small group discussion about our research. It helped me to see how other people answered the questions and what answers they got. I think that some of the groups, ours included, may have been confused about what question 1 was asking. It asked who first colonized South Africa. While we answered that the Dutch were the first settlers, other group’s answers started with when the English first Colonized South Africa. However, it gave me information about how the English also settled South Africa, since we did not have that information in our answer. Overall, I liked the small groups. It gave us time to sit down and look at other people’s work and see how we could have improved.

  25. macynicole says:

    Scavenger Hunt Response:
    1. During this Scavenger Hunt my partners and I used the pathfinder linked on the class website. My group and I mostly used the pathfinder Africa: An Encyclopedia for Students. It helped us a whole lot! We felt that it was safer to go ahead and use the sites that were linked to that page so we knew for a fact we wouldn’t plagiarize or copy right. We didn’t have any difficulties doing this Scavenger Hunt. We broke the work up so it would be easier on all of us but also compared our work at the end. We weren’t worried about the accuracy of our work; we felt that the information on the pathfinder was correct and that we answered each question correctly. We learned a lot exploring South Africa through this activity and we hope that we get full credit for our information!

    2. When I first used Google Documents it showed me its highs and its lows. First of all I didn’t like the fact that it was so slow! When I would go to type it would jet lag, it was awful. But other than that, it’s a really good resource for kids that do not have Microsoft Word at their house. Although I complained about the slowness everything else is just like Microsoft and I am sure as time goes on it will get more advanced. If I would to rate Google Documents 1-10 I would probably rate it around a 7. I feel that I can use this resource confidently but I would rather use Word. When I use Word I feel more comfortable because I know my way around it and I can actually press a save button! Microsoft Word just makes me feel more secure. But I am looking forward to using Google Documents more so I can accomplish that comfort level as well!

    3. I learned a lot doing this Scavenger Hunt on Africa, it pointed out questions that I truly wanted to know the answers too. The most interesting thing that I learned was all the information on Nelson Mandela, he truly inspires me! Usually when I have to look up answers for questions it bores me but when I did this it was interesting and I learned a lot. During class today we discussed everyone’s answers and compared and contrasted. Everyone had so many opinions that I couldn’t keep up with just one of them that stood out, all of them did! It was hard taking it all in but I learned a whole lot and it really expanded on my groups answers. I enjoyed doing this activity!

  26. wright53628 says:

    My partner and I used a variety of sources in our Research project. Jacob and I strayed from the online databases because there were a few tough questions we had trouble with. We used Grolier, Gale, infotrac, and a little bit of Google. The online databases are great because they have such a variety of information. With so many to choose from, I didn’t even know where to start! The most helpful source for me was Google. I think Google helped me out the most because it is a worldwide public website. It was fast and got me the information I needed quick. I also didn’t have to log in with specific passwords like I do on all the other sites. I was very concerned about accuracy and credibility, because I wanted a good grade on this assignment.

    Sharing information with Google Docs is probably the greatest invention ever created. It was a tremendous help. Jacob and I could both edit the document while on our own computers! The only thing I did not like about Google Docs is the auto-saving. I would rather be able to have the power to save my own document. I would rate my experience with Google Docs a 7. I give it a 7 because the auto-saving. I also liked how it was set up almost identical to Microsoft word. I am very familiar with that program, so it was great to feel that comfort.

    A lot of information stood out to me in the research paper. One main question was the one about how Nelson Mandela came into office. I thought it was cool how he was arrested, but then emerged and became president. Another question that stood out to me was the last one, #11. I liked this question because all summer long I was glued to the World Cup. I loved watching athletes compete for their countries at the global level. Also the question on the Boer war stood out to me. It was interesting how the immigrating British flooded to the place where gold was discovered. This event made the Boers angry. I was not in class today, so I didn’t participate in the discussions. I imagine all the things I listed above would be the topics that would have stood out to me though.

  27. defrank55679 says:

    Ellie D.



    Blog Post: 2

    To find the information to answer the questions, I stayed on the pathfinders. Although it was difficult to find this information, I was afraid I would get in trouble if I strayed onto google. All of the information on the pathfinders seemed credible. However, I was unable to only use the documents that were linked to the website for us to use. So I ended up using the pathfinders but finding different articles and web pages to get information. It would have been easier to complete these questions if there were more preset articles to chose from. I felt like there was not much choice within the articles and it was up to the student to basically search and locate articles that were useful.

    Google Docs is such a useful tool. I never would have expected it to be so valuable. Because this was my first time on Google Docs, I was a little bit nervous on picking it up. I have always used Microsoft Word and I was not sure I would be able to except a new place to house my documents. But learning how to use it was not too difficult and I have already begun to use it for other classes. Being able to work with other people online at the same time is so helpful. It’s amazing to see the other person working on the document in real time. I know there will be many more uses for Google Docs in my future.

    Really, everything about South Africa is new to me. I found pretty much all the information interesting. But I found Nelson Mandela particularly fascinating. It is truly amazing to me that one man can do so much. The journey through apartheid has lasted so long and some of the history of it is depressing. Now that apartheid has legally ended, I think there is a lot of hope for South Africa. Discussing the questions in a small group was helpful. I think it would have been more beneficial if we had more time to talk. But in the end, I think combining and discussing answers allowed us to yield better results.

  28. koetter48629 says:

    Alex K
    Alan Paton

    Jessica Price, and myself, did not stray from the given pathfinder. Though google was extremely tempting from all the years of using it for research projects. We found the pathfinders useful and knowledgeable. We read through our scavenger hunt questions and followed the pathfinders to every answer easily. We found it easy to find the longing answers for the given questions.We found that the Gale Virtual Reference Library and the CS monitor were the most resourceful. They were the most resourceful because of the easily accessible index, and chronically ordered information. This enabled myself to just read through smoothly, and find the answers to the given questions.

    It was a new and interesting experience to use google documents. Given, it was my first time and I felt extremely misplaced trying to figure everything out. I was nervous to ask for help as well. I’ve never had to use google docs before. I shared my document with my partner. My partner then can proceed to edit while I’m editing, which confuses me. I’ll be typing then all of a sudden my partner will start typing. It then becomes a typing frenzy! So, on a scale from 1-10 I would say I’m at a 4 right now. I’m just so new to this computer world. I’m still not very comfortable with all these technology accessories.

    Upon researching South Africa and the apartheid I felt a weird connection. For so many years I learned about segregation and racism in school. I never really took into consideration what segregation and racism really was. I knew what it meant, but I never truly thought deeply on how it effected America and still does some what. Schools across America are taught about the Jim Crow Laws and racism. To America’s dismay racism is still in session and not being stopped. No law can change some one’s aspect on ethnicity’s. In my perspective I find racism a vulgar, and people who are still racist wrong. We even had an incident at Creekview High School pertaining to a form of racism. I will not go into any further details though. Unfortunately, my opinion can not change every one’s aspects on the subject, but at least I can give my opinion.

  29. dayoub92580 says:

    My partner and I used several different sources while researching on South Africa. Although we strayed to other sources later on in the project, we started out using the pathfinders provided on the class website. I went to Google and Galileo for several of the problems. I resorted to these databases because I found that it was very time consuming looking through the big loads of information on the provided websites. It was hard to narrow down our search to find a specific answer in the pathfinder. Also, I am very unfamiliar with the databases that were provided. Therefore, I struggled when trying to navigate throughout the websites. The most helpful sources to me were the ones I found on Google because I could check numerous different websites to find out different viewpoints and theories on a subject. I was not concerned about accuracy and credibility because I have learned how to determine if a website has valid information by checking others.

    Google Docs made this project so much easier and a more pleasant experience. Features such as co-editing made researching and sharing easier because there was no need for emailing documents back and forth. My partner and I were able to work on different parts of the project at the same time not only at school, but at home too. The chatting feature also came in handy while working at home because we could talk about details of the project, etc. Using Google Docs was simple, and I did not have any challenges or struggles with the features it offers. I would rate my confidence with Google Docs a 10 as of today. The program was straightforward and did not take long to get used to.

    There were many topics and information that stood out to me in this project. But one in particular is about the shanty towns. A shanty town is a crowded community within African cities. They are usually extremely overcrowded and have inadequate housing. The thing that stood out to me the most is that people in shantytowns build homes out of whatever materials are available to them. Some use boards, tin sheets, and cardboard. This made me think of how spoiled and greedy people can get sometimes, including myself. I tend to complain a lot about things that are going wrong in my life, while someone in South Africa is struggling to put a simple shelter together. It was a big reality check when I was researching the shantytowns. This information that I learned in this project will have a lasting effect on my life.

  30. meghan2009 says:

    My partner and I used a variety of sources. The sources we most commonly used were Gale, Africa:An Encyclopedia for students, and As World Cup 2010 kicks off, where South Africa stands 16 years after apartheid. My partner and I only used resources on the pathfinder because we felt that we got accurate and more than enough information from the sources on the pathfinder. The source that I found to be most helpful was the book Africa: An Encyclopedia for students. This book allowed you to go to an index and find the information you were looking for without having to search for it. Whether it was the Boer war or Nelson Mandela, all I had to do was click on the link and it brought me to the part of the book that I was interested in. In addition, the article about Africa now and the World Cup was very helpful. Not only did it tell us about Africa hosting the World Cup, it told us how Africa had evolved since the end of apartheid. Gale was also a very useful tool because it helped us acquire information on apartheid and Nelson Mandela. My partner and I were not concerned about the accuracy of the information we used because all the sources we used were educational sources Ms. Hamilton had picked out.

    I enjoyed the experience of co-editing, researching, and sharing information with my partner. I think this is a good way to do a project because neither me nor my partner had to worry if we were doing our work. It was so easy just to log in and check that everything had gotten accomplished. Also, this was a great way to combine our research without having to go through two papers and copy and paste. To add, using the google document made it so that we didn’t have to worry about whether it saved or not or if we remembered our flash drive. In my opinion, this was the best part because I didn’t have to worry if my document was there or not. My partner and I didn’t experience any difficulties in using google documents with the sharing feature. We both edited at the same time and everything came out the way it was supposed to. My confidence level with using google documents would be a ten. I believe I can use all the features google has to offer me very well.

    One of the facts that really stood out to me during our discusion was the fact that Nelson Mandela went to jail for thirty six years. I don’t know anybody today who believes in something so strong that they would be willing to go to jail for thirty six years. He fought for what he believed in even after he was imprisoned. He never gave up hope that one day South Africa wouldn’t have apartheid. Today, there are all kinds of things people believe in, but i have never once met a person so passionate about a cause that they would sit in jail for thirty six years and still continue fighting. Also, what really caught my attention was the Soweto riots. I can’t comprehend how police officers can shoot children for protesting. On the other hand, it was inspiring to see all of South Africa natives uniting against the injustice of these acts. All across South Africa people protested against the harsh acts of the police officers and risked their lives and freedom in the process. Though more died in the riots, I think that the unification that the natives showed really impressed people. These two points really stood out to me because it showed how far the South Africans were willing to go to end apartheid.

  31. pacilio83495 says:

    Ashley P.
    August 24, 2010
    4th Period

    My partner, Hannah, and I decided to use the pathfinders that Mrs. Lester and Mrs. Hamilton provided for us. We chose this because we thought that they would have to best and most reliable information. We didn’t go onto Google or any other website that was not recommended by Mrs. Hamilton because we were worried that we would be given false information. We also thought about how it would be possible for us to be misled into believing information that is not true, and passing it on to other people we know that are interested in South Africa. The source that was the most helpful to us was the “Apartheid of South Africa.” We used this website for most of the questions. We found it extremely interesting and it was on our level of reading. Another source we used was “Apartheid.” We did not use this website as much because we found “Apartheid of South Africa” easier to understand. For these two sources, we did not worry about accuracy and credibility because we assumed that Mrs. Hamilton would not provide pathfinders to us that were inaccurate. We also did not worry about accuracy because these websites are based off of almanacs and other resourceful books.
    For the most part, I thought using Google Docs was very convenient. This was our first time using the shared documents, and it made working together a lot easier. I liked how we were able to collaborate on each question if we preferred to. Originally we decided to split the questions up in half, and have each of us do a part. However, we ended up working together to find the final answers to each question. One problem I had had to do with where I wanted to work in the document. I’m not sure if it was the computer or Google Docs, but it would not let me click where I wanted to. I ended up having to use the directional keys when I wanted to move to a different question or line. On a scale of one to ten, I would rate my comfort and confidence on Google Docs as an eight. I chose this number because this program is very easy to work with, and I’ve started to use it in many of my classes. I have one slight issue with Google Docs though. Sometimes, when I’m at home, my Internet does not turn on. This could cause many problems if I have saved all of my work on Google Docs. Conclusively, I think this is a good program to use.
    One piece of information that stood out to me while I was researching was about Soweto Riots. I am appalled that so many students were killed just because they were protesting a law. I believe that they should not have made Afrikaners the main language in schools. Another thing from the research that surprised me was how fast South Africa was able to turn their country around. I think it is amazing that just sixteen short years ago they were a country that defined “separateness.” Now South Africa is a much stronger country that was able to come together to host the 2010 World Cup. I hope that they can continue to improve their economy and become an even stronger country. One thing I obtained from the group discussion today was that people can have many different varieties of the right answer to a question. I was surprised to find that no one in our group used a source outside of the pathfinders that Mrs. Hamilton provided for us. I think that this means we all wanted our research answers to be as accurate as possible.

  32. jacobhol11 says:

    – Brandon, Macy, and I used several different sources for our answers. We strayed away from the pathfinder, only a very few times. We used Google for a couple of answers. The only reason for this was that we could not find the answer to the question. We also wanted a deeper answer, and on occasion the pathfinder didn’t have a precise answer. The main source we used was Gale, because it was really simple and has most of the answers. Another source, was SIRS. SIRS was helpful, but definitely not as helpful as Gale was. Gale and the Africa Encyclopedia were surely the most helpful sources for my group. When we used google, I was concerned about accuracy and credibility. The concern was due to the fact that Google isn’t a reliable source, and anyone can make the pages.

    – Using Google docs has its ups and downs. For one, it is really slow to me. It messes up a lot and lags frequently. But for people like me, who don’t have Word, it is really helpful. It is almost an exact replica of Word. If not the same, then I would say that I’d prefer Google docs. Now that I have learned how to use it, I like it a lot. It helps make everything easier, so I don’t have to install programs and such. Word seems more secure to me, but Google docs is better for me. I am very comfortable with Word, but I believe that I will do the same with Google docs.

    -The scavenger hunt was extremely helpful to me. I learned a lot about South Africa, and the culture there. I found out a lot about the Apartheid and Nelson Mandela, also. For answering questions, this was a very fun assignment. I now feel more comfortable about South Africa. Today in class, we compared our answers. There were several that were similar to mine. However, most of them were very different. It is opinionated, depends on the person for the answer. This was a very fun activity, and I would love to do more like it. I learned a lot from the comparisons, that also made me feel more comfortable.

    -Jacob Holcombe, 4th Period

  33. murphy100915 says:

    My partner and I mainly used sources provided on the pathfinder. However, none of them went into the depth that I wanted for my answer. They included only basic facts about each topic. We went to websites we found through Google, such as Wikipedia and several independent pages about each topic. I thought the pathfinder was easy to use and did have enough information to know what to look for on pages found through Google. I was concerned about the accuracy of the pages outside of the pathfinder because I did not want incorrect information. I checked several independent pages when I cam across a fact I was unsure about. I did come across a few facts which were inconsistent, such as the years and other events relating to the Boer War.
    I greatly enjoyed working with Google Docs and using it to share documents. The experience of being able to co-edit the document in real time was new to me, and I thought it was very helpful in getting this done. I liked being able to assist each other with any problem with the information we came across. I also liked being able to chat with each other in real time and correct each other’s mistakes. We did not have any issues with Google Docs that affected our research. As of today, I would rate my comfort and confidence level with Google Docs an eight. I feel comfortable sharing and editing documents, but I would like to explore what other document types are available to share and communicate with.
    I was surprised by how separated the different groups of people were during Apartheid in South Africa. I thought that Apartheid was like segregation in the United States, where the different groups had different facilities, but were still allowed to contact each other. In South African Apartheid, the idea was to completely separate the groups. Another idea that stood out to me during the discussion was how many people strayed from the pathfinder. I expected most groups to simply use the resources on the pathfinder because we were told that they were detailed and accurate. However, I guess they did not want to read the long pages that were provided for them and went elsewhere for information.

  34. buelow53675 says:

    Jonathan B.

    As far as using sources for finding the answers, I stuck with the Gale Database. I managed to find all my answers, although some were harder than others. For instance, it took a half hour in order to find an answer to the cause of the Boer War. Gale only had one book on the topic, and I had a hard time finding it on the other approved sites for the questions. Overall, though, I thought that it wasn’t too hard to find all of the information that I needed. However, if I wanted to find more data and facts for these questions, I would need to stray somewhere else. These sites just simply don’t have everything. Out of the sources listed, I thought that the Gale database was the most useful. The thing that I thought was the most helpful was the fact that the database used actual books for information, and the fact that it could be ordered by relevance, somewhat shortening the research process. As far as accuracy and credibility, I wanted to make sure that the information I put out there was relevant, due to the fact that other people may use the information that we published to help on some project.
    Google docs, in my opinion, were a great way to get the research questions done. My partner and I were able to efficiently divide up the work, and then edit it without interfering with each other. The chat feature is also handy too, for if something were to come up outside of school, we could discuss it without having to go to all of the extra trouble. As far as the researching went, it was rather slow. Although the information that I found could be claimed as credible, the process of finding it and sorting it from excess information was tedious. However, when using Google Docs, placing the information was extremely easy. I personally didn’t encounter any problems, and everything went smoothly as far as posting the information. As far as rating my comfort and confidence level with Google Docs, I would have to say it as a 8 or 9. I find it extremely easy to use, and have encountered no problems so far. I have grown to like this program and intend on using it in the future.
    I learned a lot from my research. For instance, I didn’t know that the term Afrikaner was referring to one of the first settlers. In this instance in South Africa, the Dutch were the settlers. Another that stood out to me was the positive and negative effects on the national media of the World Cup. This, personally, is due to the fact that I watched the World Cup and got to see what some of South Africa looked like, and the fact that I play soccer. Yet another thing that stood out to me was the cause of the Boer War. It was caused by the fact that the independent state occupied by the Boers had gold, and the English settlers wanted that gold. Since the Boers were allied with South Africa, a war began between the English and South Africa. Eventually the English won, but it took them much longer than expected. This stood out to me mainly due to the fact that an independent state as tiny as the Boers had managed to stand up to England for some years to come.

  35. ryan54131 says:

    For our research project on South Africa, my partner and I used many sources, such as The Christian Science Monitor, Gale, and Galileo. We found that all of the assigned sources had an abundance of accurate information. Therefore, we did not desire to obtain information from other sites. One of the most helpful sources was Gale. My partner and I found an ebook on Africa in Gale. The ebook was very efficient because we were able to search keywords from our questions in the index. Also, we discovered an excerpt about apartheid from the same ebook in Gale. This helped us with questions that were specifically focused on the issue of apartheid. Additionally, we discovered that The Christian Science Monitor website was an extremely helpful resource. This site gave us copious amounts of information on South Africa before and after apartheid. All of these sources appeared to be very helpful and accurate because databases are generally very efficient and trustworthy.
    Working with Google Docs was a very interesting experience for my partner and I. Both of us had used Google Docs before, but we had never used any of the cooperative features. It was very useful to be able to use the same document and edit it simultaneously. Google Docs does appear to be a very good method to use instead of Microsoft Word, yet my partner and I had a few problems with Google Docs. In the beginning, I had to reload the page a few times in order to be able to actually edit the page. Also, my partner and I were disappointed that Google Docs is not as elaborate as Word. For example, Google Docs does not have a built-in dictionary or thesaurus. However, my partner and I identified some very useful features. We both enjoyed the ability to share the document in different ways. With our document, we could share with only each other, only people who had the web address, or with the entire web. On a scale of one to ten with my comfort and confidence level with Google Docs, I would rate myself as a nine because I am very confident with my ability to use Google Docs, but I am not extremely comfortable with using Google Docs.
    In our research and group discussions, I found some ideas that stood out to me. In our research, several ideas stood out to me. I found it very surprising that after Britain defeated the Boers in three years the Boers basically took over again because Britain did not have enough colonists. I would have thought that Britain would have done a lot of advertising during the war to try to get as many colonists as possible to come to the acquired land after the war. Additionally, during my research, I was shocked to find out the real definition of a shantytown. I did not know that the houses in the shantytowns were basically tents constructed out of any materials that people could find. I was also shocked when I found out what the Soweto Riots were. I was appalled to find out that police shot down rock-throwing, protesting students and killed hundreds of students. In our group discussions, I found only one idea that stood out to me. My group members also were shocked and surprised by some of the same ideas that I reacted to.

  36. josh c says:

    Josh Cooley Mrs. Lester

    Reflection Questions

    My partners and I used google to answer our research questions that we were assigned to find out. Yes we did stray away from the pathfinder. We did this because I found it hard to find information on the links provided. Also I find it very natural to look anything up that I am required to on google, or other search engines. Wikipedia and other scientific sites were the most helpful. I never was concerned about the accuracy or credibility because I have found that most of the time the first sites to come up on a search for google are typically very credible. I happen to know that major topics in wikipedia are managed and cannot be changed.
    My first experience of co-editing with google documents was very surprising. I was amazed by the fact that more than one person can edit the document at one time. It was a very efficient way to co-write a paper and I plan on using it in the future. The one concern i have with google documents is the fact that if not secured correctly, it is a application that can sabotage one’s work quite easily. For example as a joke we would occasionally erase a small bit of one of our groups work. I believe if I had been writing an important document and someone who knew of it had Mal intent they could easily erase or mess with my work. All in all I would give Google Docs an eight out of ten.
    Nelson Mandela stands out to me in the sum of my research. He was a great leader in the fight against apartheid. The thing that stands out to me the most about him is the fact that he lead the fight after he spent forty years in jail for fighting against apartheid. Also, I found the origin of Afrikaans very interesting. The fact that it is developed from so many different cultures is very intriguing. The fact that our groups could share what we found with each other stood out to me. The Internet is a very efficient way to share information and knowledge. I plan on using tools like Wikispaces and Google Docs often. I believe these tools can be used for many other classes.

  37. When my partner and I were working on the scavenger hunt, we used many resources and tools to find information. Although there are many helpful sites such as Google, we went to sites that were given to us by our teachers instead. These sites were very helpful to me because they had up to date information that was accurate and useful. I used websites such as “Apartheid’s Long Shadow,” “Apartheid of South Africa,” Africa: An Encyclopedia for students,” and much more. There are many more websites that can be useful other than Google just like these. Although each of these pathfinders are great for research, I began to stray from these sites and visited Google for more information, only because I am used to relying on Google and sites similar to that. Yet, I have recently realized that the pathfinders have very accurate information and I should use them more often. At first i doubted the research pathfinders because I have never used these sources before. After I had worked on my project for a while and got used to using these new sites, I saw that they were very dependable, so used them more. Research pathfinders have become a great relief for me when I stress over not being able to find certain information. Therefore I am going to use pathfinders more and more as I get assigned new projects.

    After using Google Docs for the first time, I realized that it was much easier to use and much more helpful. There are many advantages to having Google Docs. These advantages include co-editing, researching and sharing information. co-editing is when you can connect with a partner and you are able to edit and type on the paper along with the partner at the same time. This comes in handy because it is much simpler when it comes to communicating and sending the paper back and forth. In Microsoft Word, you have to type the paper by yourself, then when your finished you have to save, attach the file to your email and send it to your partner for them to continue on the paper. This can become a big hassle and gets frustrating. Yet, instead of having to go through all those steps, you and your partner can each work on the paper at the same time and see what each other are typing on the your own screen. Google Docs worked great for me and i did not doubt it at all. On a scale of 1-10, I would say using Google Docs is about a 9. Sites such as Google Docs has really changed my perspective on how technology works and how it just keeps getting better and easier.

    While experiencing new things by using Google Docs, Research Pathfinders, and more useful sites, i learned a lot more information about history. Me and my partner’s research questions were answered by using these resources. I learned many facts about apartheid of South Africa and the way things transformed over time. I was informed about the settlements in South Africa, national congress and government, places like shanty towns, and just the basic meaning of apartheid. All this new information introduced to me was very useful when it comes to learning about history and the way things worked back then. Learning about the apartheid of South Africa was an experience for me because I have never really tried to understand the concept of apartheid and how it had a great effect on people’s lives. It changed the world as it spread rapidly through places that contained whites and blacks. Blacks were treated differently and worse than whites because whites were understood to be superior. All of this new information has given me a new perspective on things and I will continue to use Google Docs and research pathfinders to gather information.

    Aly Chandler- 7th Period

  38. rich57377 says:

    1) My partners and I stayed with the assigned pathfinders on the Media Center’s website, such as Galileo, Gale, and SIRS. We found our information on these databases by using major keywords describing the topic in what we were looking for. We only used these three pathfinders, and did not stray to any other databases like Google or Wikipedia. I personally thought that Gale was the most beneficial, mainly because I was assigned a portion of the questions that could have been easier to find on Gale. Also, I have more experience using Gale because of my past literature classes. I was concerned about the amount of accuracy, because I tend to care about the accuracy even for non-graded assignments. But, the credibility honestly did not concern me very much. This is because we are using school-approved programs, that have already been read and verified for school usage. I did not copy and paste, and I have proof through my answers, so I am not concerned of copyright because using these databases are greatly encouraged at our high school.

    2) As this was my first time experiencing Google Docs, I was actually very impressed on how it worked. It’s tremendously effective on what I need to accomplish at school on a daily basis. The co-editing feature is my favorite part, which is also the main feature that makes Google Docs different from Microsoft Word. It’s very easy to share, as it’s based on the Internet, and does not have to be separately attached to any e-mails. It also saves money, because these non-Internet programs require a fee bought at an actual store. The only problem I have with Google Docs is that there is no built-in thesaurus to help increase my vocabulary easier, as Word did. A few minor computer problems occurred using Google Docs, but all I had to do was refresh the page and it fixed the error. On a scale of 1 to 10, I would rate myself an 8 on my comfort and confidence level, because I still need to get used to using a brand new program that I had previously had no experience with whatsoever. I’m sure once I use Google Docs on a regular basis, my comfort and confidence level would improve because I would have more time to play around and gain more experience with this intriguing program.

    3) While answering the research questions on South Africa, some ideas, like apartheid, stood out to me because I had already known and heard about those problems in South Africa. When answering the questions, past experiences from learning about South Africa and its problems quickly came returning to me, and it really helped me remember and connect to the questions being asked. Once I already knew the basic answer for a question, it would inspire me to fully understand and learn about the next question, other than just copying down words from the website and not even understanding what I was saying. This method really helped me connect with all of the South Africa problems that were asked, and it encouraged me to dive further into studying and learning about the problems South Africa still faces up to this day. When discussing with the groups, it helped me understand other people’s points of view on this subject, and how what they wrote reflects on how they feel about South Africa in general. If they felt sorry for the country, they would write about how long and how much suffering South Africa went through to get where it was today. If they were just writing down to finish the assignment, there was no emotional connection they showed when talking about their answers to me. Apparently, the people who worked knew what they were talking about and has something extra to add, while the other people would read their answers word for word off of the screen. All of the questions and answers everyone gave stood out to me, because I was comparing what they put with my own opinions and answers.

  39. card108560 says:

    In my group, I actually had two partners, not just one. As far as I know, neither of my fellow group members strayed off to search with Google. I actually started by searching for my information with Google.com. It wasn’t until after Mrs. Lester mentioned the Pathfinder that I even thought about using it. I was absent when we started the project, so I wasn’t sure where to get my sources from. I defaulted to Google out of habit, but I didn’t really find much until I went to the Pathfinder. When using the guide that Mrs. Hamilton put together, I figured that the information was solid and fairly reliable. I don’t think that she puts anything into the guides without checking their authenticity.
    I really like what Google Docs brings to the table when it comes to collaborating. Being able to edit and view documents in real time with your partners is a very cool feature. One of the reasons that I liked this feature was because of my ability to see the pace of others in my group. This kind of helped me to gauge how fast and in depth the answer to each question should be. When I started using Google Docs, I was unfamiliar with the interface, however similar it is to Word. That was the only real issue that I had while using it. Overall, it is fairly simplistic and not too cumbersome. It is more convenient to use and learn than Microsoft’s counterpart. After using it just once, I am fairly confident in my ability to use Google Docs. Although I missed the day that we went over it, I figured it out easily enough.
    The thing that amazed me the most was the power that the Afrikaners commanded after their ancestors took control of the area known as South Africa. Their original technology gave them every advantage over the indigenous peoples of the area. They cemented their power early on then passed it off to each generation. This power continued to amass until the Afrikaners had complete control. I find the fact that they were able to solidify their power and institute the apartheid to extremely interesting. The reason why makes sense, even how long it went on makes sense. I just don’t understand why the Afrikaners didn’t just do away with the natives entirely. Enforcing the apartheid probably was less work than genocide, but the very fact that they saw the indigenous as inferior makes me wonder why they didn’t do away with them.

  40. Ryan says:

    Josh and I used Google for our research on South Africa. So, we did stray away from the pathfinder. Matt, however, stayed on the pathfinder and used Gale and Sirs. It’s easy to stray because Google is so much easier and its simple to use and the websites are easy to read. The source I used for the questions was Wikipedia. I believe that a lot of websites say true stuff and don’t lie. If they did, the websites would lose business. Also, I heard that Wikipedia has some yellow bar that comes up saying the content is not true. Google is just so much easier than any other database or pathfinder. Everybody has used Google before and it’s just plain and simply easier.

    Well, editing was relatively easy to do on Google docs. I like how group members can edit each other’s work. I believe it is very helpful to have more than one set of eyes on the work. It is hard to see mistakes you do but easier to see others do. So, it all works out in the end. What really got me mad at Google docs was how it lagged really badly and how you couldn’t click were you wanted to. It makes it annoyingly harder to do work. I would rate Google docs an 8. Its cool how it lets more than one person work on it. But the little things add up to make it an 8 instead of a ten.
    What stood out to me is how harsh life is in some countries. We also talked about this in our group. It’s hard to live with something when you know its wrong. We also liked how some countries cut ties to South Africa because of how they lived. However, this has happened a lot in history. For example, the Europeans kicked out and treated the Indians horrible. This is just how the world is. No matter what any groups do that they think will make the world better won’t work. The world will stay the same and evil will always be here.

  41. schwab53702 says:

    I mainly used the pathfinder, Africa: An encyclopedia for students. I found this website to be very helpful and it was full of information. I found it very helpful that we had websites found just for researching that topic. I had two partners and Sara used the same pathfinder that I did because she came in late and I showed her what to do. Meagan on the other hand, I think used both Google and multiple pathfinders from the website. I am not sure why she used Google. I looked at all the websites in the pathfinder and found Africa: An encyclopedia for students to be the most helpful. I really liked how you could type in a key word and it would find it in the index. I didn’t really use any other pathfinders. I was not concerned about accuracy because both Sara and Meagan are hard workers and pay attention to details.

    I thought that the co-editing was very helpful. You could be working on one problem while your partner is working on another problem and you can see exactly what they are doing. I thought that sharing the document in Google Docs is a lot easier than trying to share than a Word document. Instead of trying to email the document a an attachment and then sending the newer document back to your partner, all you have to do is send them the link and you can both edit it. It defiantly takes a little bit of stress away because you don’t have to worry about who is going to take the project home. Everyone can access it at home. What worked for me was being able to see what your partner was doing at the time they were doing it. So then you could correct them right there in case they forget to do it themselves. On a scale of one to ten I would probably say a seven. That’s because I am getting used to Google Docs but there are still some things that I do not know how to do.

    The research that stood out to me the most was probably all the segregation in South Africa. I knew that there was segregation but I did not know how much there really was. I was unaware that they had actually made written laws about segregation. It stood out to me because I just don’t understand why we segregate people. Just because their skin is a different color doesn’t mean they need to treated like trash. I also learned why the Europeans came to South Africa in the first place. I thought that it was interesting how they came in search of gold. I also thought learning about the apartheid was interesting. I did not know it was the official racial system and that it was the government policy. I still don’t understand why they actually had written laws.

  42. rowland53994 says:

    Hannah R.

    For the South African research, my partner and I used the websites provided on the pathfinder. We knew these websites were reliable and had the information needed for the research. We knew they had the information because Mrs. Hamilton took the time to find sites for our use. These websites were also easy to access. We did not leave the pathfinder to find information. If we had, the websites would not have been as reliable. It was also easier just to use the information provided. The databases from the pathfinder that were the most helpful would have to be “Apartheid of South Africa” and “Apartheid.” We used these two sites for majority of the problems. These sites contained great information that we knew was reliable. We were not concerned about the credibility of these sites because they provided information from encyclopedias and other reliable resources.
    Google Docs is a great idea. All of my work is stored to a cloud that can be edited or viewed from almost everywhere. Google Docs allows people to collaborate and edit a document all at once even from different places. This is very helpful if I am working on a group assignment and I we are not able to get together. However, Google Docs still has some quirks that need to be fixed. When I was trying to write my blogs from here, it would freeze then mess up my entire computer. Also, in some cases, the view of the page would be small so you could not see your work. It also gets confused and freezes when many students are trying to access Google Docs at once. Because of these problems, I would rate my confidence and comfort of Google Docs a five. These issues need to be updated and solved so I can enjoy using Google Docs.
    Some information that stood out to me was about apartheid. Apartheid lasted so long in South Africa. It was the segregation of the natives (blacks) from the European settlers. The natives were treated so harshly with little respect. It really shocked me when I saw the sigh saying “Beware of the natives!” I do not know how the natives stood through all the abuse towards them. Nelson Mandela came along to help end apartheid and restore justice in South Africa. He is a very important part of South Africa’s past, present, and future. In today’s meeting, my group discussed the 2010 World Cup which was held in South Africa. This gave South Africa good media exposure and has really helped to bring South Africa together as a country. This makes me excited and anxious to see what South Africa can obtain and become. My entire group hopes that this will help South Africa’s economy grow into a strong success.

  43. vcatherine12 says:

    1. The sources me and my partner used were mainly the Gale Virtual Reference Library. We did stray away for some of the answers and use other sources than the research pathfinder’s page along with using the Gale site. This was only for convenience because you have to go through several sites to get on the Gale Reference library page and Google is very easy to get on. We also used some of the articles on the pathfinder to find more recent information on some of the questions. The source that I thought was the most helpful was the Gale Virtual Reference Library because it was the quickest and easiest to use. Also, because I am more comfortable with it than any of the other reference pages. Accuracy and credibility can greatly affect research because if the information is not correct or reliable then the whole research is false. So, what I did ,when I did stray away from the LibGuides page, was consistently check a variety of websites that looked credible with the answer I was looking for to be sure one website wasn’t completely wrong or unrelated to the topic. As for the research data bases that were on the LibGuides page, I thought had very credible sources from the information of the author, publication date, etc.
    2. Google Docs, much like Microsoft Word, was very simple and easy to use. I think it is actually much better than Word because you can share and edit the document with others all over the world and easily insert it to a Google site, blog, or anything else. This was actually not my first time using Google Docs, but I have learned more about the sharing device. This sharing device is the key thing that sets its part from other competitors such as Microsoft Word because it is on the web. I didn’t experience any problems other than cursor issues that only were a problem at school and not my personal computer. On a scale from one to ten, I would rate my comfort level with Google Docs about an eight or nine only because I think there are other devices I think I haven’t actually used and will eventually. Once I know I have every gadget and gizmo of Google Docs and everything that involves with it completely mastered and set, then I can rate it a ten. So, basically it is really on my part that I set apart an eight from a ten on the rating scale because I’m not completely confident in all the things that Google has to offer.
    3. There wasn’t a lot of information that specifically stood out to me, but there was a couple of thing that is worth mentioning. One thing that stood out to me while both doing research and discussing it was the shantytowns in South Africa. Although I knew Africa was very poor and is very corrupted in some parts, I never would have thought that South Africa could have some very poor parts to it. What I found out in my research was that there are actually several shantytowns on the the outskirts of large South African cities. In the United States, usually there are suburbs that surround large cities, but in contrast to us, South Africa has shantytowns. This was a bit eye opening because I had also thought of South Africa to be completely solid and wealthy country. Another thing that stood out to me was the first settlers of South Africa. In my research it is known that the first settlers were Dutch, which stuck me as odd for some reason. I think it might have seem off to me is because of the distance from the nation of the Dutch to South Africa. Realizing this is actually a complement to the Dutch for expanding their territory so far way from their own nation. The last thing that interested me but not necessarily stood out to me was the question over the influence of the World Cup on South Africa. Though I did not watch the World Cup religiously, like some fans, I still understood what was going on and where. I didn’t, however, think about what positive influence it could have on South Africa. This is probably because I did not know that apartheid ended so little time ago and how the world reacted to it. So, I think I have a better understanding on why having the World Cup in South Africa was a positive influence on their nation. All of these reasons that stood out to me while I answered them and discussed it with my group shifted my way of thinking of South Africa for the better.

  44. My partner Madeline and I used the Gale and SIRS pathfinders to research the questions. We relied on these sources to find all of our information. Both of the databases are very valid and accurate sites. I believe that all of the information that we obtained through these sites were correct and credible. There were several reasons why I chose to avoid search engines such as Google. First of all, all of the information that it displays could or could not be accurate. Next, I think the links that were given to us were simpler and more user friendly. In the databases, there were topic sidebars which had everything that we needed to find our answers. I did not use the search engines because it takes time to find valuable information because there are thousands of links to choose from, but on the databases, this is not a hassle. I think that the databases that were given to us outweighed the search engines in terms of reliable and accurate information.

    Using Google Docs was beneficial to this project. I liked the share feature because it allowed my partner and I to work on the questions at the same time. Also, we simultaneously discussed the information and edited the document. Sharing our information and editing together was a unique feature in Google Docs that I enjoyed using. I thought this was easier to use rather than having to send email attachments from Microsoft Word to share with my partner. This gave me the feeling of a faster, smarter, and more connected student. I did not encounter any major problems using Google Docs. I would rate Google Docs as a 10! Now, I really feel comfortable and confident using this instead of Microsoft Word. Google Docs shortened the amount of time spent on this project and will for many projects to come.

    While using these tools I learned new information that I was unfamiliar with. To add to this, I made present day and historical connections with them. As and example, I was unaware that there was a Boer War between the Dutch and English. Also, I compared Civil Rights in the United States to Apartheid in South Africa. I then compared and contrasted Nelson Mandela to Martin Luther King Jr. and found many interesting facts. These realizations really stood out to me. Another topic which stood out to me was the World Cup. I liked seeing how much South Africa benefited from the coverage of the World Cup. From struggling with Apartheid to people coming together to watch soccer in the time span of 16 years is remarkable. I think that being exposed to historical events and the progression of South Africa has helped me have a new understanding of the world around me.

  45. Maria T says:

    I used pathfinder in the beginning when I was doing my research. However, as I continued to look for the answers I could not find them in the articles I was reading. Also, my computer would not allow me to open the links to several of the articles. Therefore, I was not able to use those articles even if I had wanted to. I ended up using Google to find the answers for the African scavenger. For most of the questions I found the answers with the help of Wikipedia. I also found a few of the answers on independent websites. I did not ponder the credibility of the sources I used, because I had used some of them before.
    I do not like using Google documents, because it makes things harder. Microsoft word does not have many glitches, and is easy to use. However, while using Google documents I realized that it had a lot of glitches. Plus, Google documents requires you to have several windows open at once. Which sometimes caused my computer to run slower than normal. I would rate Google documents a 5 out of 10. Simply because I do not like it.
    I found researching the South African apartheid interesting. For example, I did not know that Whites had to have permission to enter the black cities. I also never knew that South Africa was segregated in the past century. It is amazing that they have come so far in such a small amount of time. Their hosting of the 2010 FIFA world cup brought notice to their current situation. Other nations noticed the impact apartheid had made on South Africa. South Africa still has a long way to go on improving their society. But they are heading in the right direction.

  46. My partner and I used pathfinders most of the time but we did stray and use google. We used different sites because we found it difficult to find certain pieces of information for some of the questions. Pathfinder sources that we used were Gale Virtual Reference Library, SIRS, and EBSCO host knowledge source. The sources that were the most helpful were SIRS and Gale Virtual Reference Library, on these sources I was not worried about credibility of the information. the reason being as to why i wasn’t worried is because the sources are credible and have their citations cited correctly, also they are sites that my teachers approve of and encourage to use.
    Co-editing is intriguing, while you are typing it is strange to see your partner typing at the same time on the computer. It is a fun experience though, because while you type your partner could be going through what you have just typed and edit the paper. What worked for me was that we could see the changes being made in real time and not have to wait for the other person to send a copy. I did come across a challenge in the glitching that occurred when we were editing at the same time, this glitch messed me up on typing and would not let me click on exactly where I wanted to type or change a word. On a scale of 1-10 it would have to be a 7, not completely comfortable with using google docs, but it is a new concept that I will use more often.
    There is a lot information that i learned and many things stood out but one thing in particular is that there was so much pressure on South Africa and many protests that weren’t just kept withing South Africa. Those protests spread throughout the whole world, this amazes me that one country can affect the way a whole world thinks.Some ideas that stood out from the small and class discussion is that South Africa has so much wonderful history, even compared to all the terrible things that occurred with its borders. It is an amazing, wonderful thing that was able to happen to South Africa, for apartheid to end is a great accomplishment. Also they have created a great name for themselves since then, coming back from a horrible history and reputation, to almost winning the world cup.

  47. Cole Maran says:

    My Partner used all of the sources that were provided by the Media Center and used those answers which my group found were not as detailed as the ones they used which were websites from a search engine. I used Google and found the answers I needed to for the questions and they were all correct. I did this shortly after trying the databases that were suggested and provided that did not give me and strait answers that took much longer to find. I was personally not worried at all about not using the provided databases due to the fact that I use search engines so often and know which websites and links that it provided would be wrong by their page’s configuration.
    I believe that the co editing idea of Google Docs. was a great idea because we shared the work load easily and could check one another’s answers faster. I say that I currently have a 9 out of 10 comfort level about using Google Docs. It offers comfort of knowing who you are sharing it with by only offering it to people whom you invite to join you to access and edit it. I enjoyed using Google Docs. because it showed me the second my partner hit the key of what they were saying so if they made a mistake I could tell them or fix it myself. I have worked with similar products that only allowed me to see my partners typing after they had saved the document. Therefore making the entire process much slower and aggravating.
    Honestly none of the information shoot out to me because I felt that the information simply was found and transferred to the assignment page and wasn’t necessarily taught o I didn’t remember any of it. If I was told to re do the sheet I would have to go all through the websites again because I have found that I learned from hands on experience that requires memorization and not searching for the information then copying it down onto a different page or website. I wish I could say that it helped but it didn’t what so ever.

  48. hamby53850 says:

    My partner and I had a very easy time using the resources and databases. Gale Virtual Reference Library was extremely helpful and supplied us with many answers to the questions. We never strayed from the given links because we didn’t have the need to. Without the GVRL, we would have had a hard time because it was so easy searching key words about our topics. We also used SIRS to find information. It was very helpful and simple to use which made this project go by much faster. We trusted all of these resources and believed that the information on them was very credible. These resources were very useful when it came to researching Africa. They had a large variety of ebooks and articles over the topics that we needed them for. I will definitely encourage my friends and family to use these databases and I will use them on projects that i do in the future.

    This was my first time using Google docs and it will definitely not be my last. I loved it how other approved people can edit and read your document. Without using this program, I don’t know what I would have done. It would have been hectic. Google Docs made it so easy for me to share what i had written with my partner. This was a good first experience for me. Before I really got used to how Google Docs worked, I was intimidated but now that i see the simplicity of it, I rate my experience a perfect 10. I use for all of my typing, in all of my classes. I plan on sharing my experience with family and friends and encouraging them to use it in all of the work they do.

    A research topic that really interested me was the Boer War. It reminds of how the world works today. Everyone is so eager to find plentiful oil in the ground. It has become a must in every city or town across the globe. It could be described almost as important as finding gold or diamonds. Oil has turned many countries into a rich, horrible place to live. You can’t even go through a single day without hearing how gas prices or rising and how oil was found some where. Oil now a days is much like gold and diamonds were back then in South Africa. My whole group had the longest and most in depth discussion about apartheid. We all wondered why the blacks and whites treated each other badly. We all agreed that Nelson Mandela was hero for helping to end it, but how he too suffered. Why would anyone treat some innocent person bad? It all amazes me. I enjoyed doing this project and will share all of the programs I used with other people that I encounter in my life.

    Period- 4

  49. Alexandra C says:

    The sources my partner and I used were mostly the ones given to us. However, we did go to Wikipedia and other places for information. This is because the answers we found on the pages supplied were too shallow. We were trying to find detail and this was the best way we could think of. Of course we were concerned about accuracy and credibility because if the source wasn’t accurate and credible then it would reflect badly on us as well. The sources that were the most helpful were Apartheid and As world cup 2010 kicks off, where South Africa stands 16 years after Apartheid. Apartheid had information about just about everything. the sites had decent detail, but not as much as desired. The Wiki page that I used did not have a flag at the top marking the source as unreliable, so I used it as a resource.

    Co editing was neat, though i like Microsoft Word better. In school, I have to click two lines below where i want to have my cursor. Also, Word automatically capitalizes “I,” but Google Docs doesn’t. I honestly used Word half the time, because it works better. I rather dislike Google Docs because I’m barely ever on my gmail and forget about assignments on it. it’s better for me to save it in word and use Google Docs to post it. A scale of one to ten about my comfort and confidence level is about a three. This is only because it annoys me to no end. I would much rather use Word. I plan to use Word and paste it in Docs to publish.
    The ideas that stand out to me were that South Africa’s image is steadily improving. Also, that Apartheid is not very far gone. Now a days we act like slavery is a thing long past. Yet, when you look at places like South Africa, they are still struggling out of the shadows of it. I was unaware until just recently that there had been segregation to this degree, I thought it was long past. The ideas from our discussion were that there are still many things that I don’t know about this area. I was not really aware of Nelson Mandela. I had heard of him, and learned a tiny bit about him, but not really. I now know more about South Africa than I have. However, I have still barely scratched the surface.

  50. leahy53990 says:

    I mainly used Gale virtual resources as my main resource to the South African apartheid scavenger hunt. However, I also used Sirs and The Christian Science Monitor as my other references . Ryan Zentko used Gale a bit too, but when he needed information quickly he used google. Josh Cooley also found Gale and Sirs very helpful. He did use Wikipedia for a little information on the tougher questions though. For the harder questions we searched on google, which led us to sites such as http://www.southafrica.com, and http://www.africanhistory.about.com. The sources on the pathfinder were helpful and we received most of our information from those sites. However, I also think that we could have got the same information on the other sites we used. I was not concerned at all about the credibility of our sources. Most of them were provided for us, so I knew that those were reliable sites. Then the two main sites that we used off Google seemed like they were very reliable sites too.

    I found it very easy to share documents and edit them with the new features that Google installed. I thought that it was very helpful that you can go into the document and edit others work. I think that this works a lot better than just using Microsoft because then you have to carry around a flash drive and you have a certain amount of space on that. In Google docs you have plenty of space to save your documents and you can access them on any computer. You also don’t even have to save because it does that for you. Plus it has almost all of the same features that Word does. On a scale of my comfort I would have to say that I’m at about an eight. I know what I’m doing, but I’m sure there is more to all of this that I don’t know about though.

    I think the thing that stood out to me was how hard life was where they live. Most people lived in little shacks packed full of people in shanty towns. Most also had no job, which is what a lot of the Africans came for in the first place. If they did have a job it was in poor conditions and did not get much pay. For example, most people got jobs in the mining industry. They worked in sweltering heat and many died in mining accidents. The idea that stood out towards me the most was the conditions people were in and just pretty much the whole idea of apartheid.

  51. gabriella pontoo says:

    My Partner and I mostly used the Article titled Apartheid of South Africa, and bits and pieces of the Africa Encyclopedia. The Apartheid of South Africa was more of the bigger picture where as the Encyclopedia provided more details and deeper meaning. My partner and I did stray away from the databases maybe once or twice unfortunately. This was mainly because we had difficulty finding the answer so we decided to take the easy way out. This did prove to be a problem because we had to compare what one source would tell us to the many others that came up. The Apartheid article proved to be helpful in starting us off on the answer and showing us what to look for. Although the Encyclopedia was extremely easy to navigate and obtain information from which allowed us to find the answers much more quickly. Accuracy and credibility were not a problem when it came to the articles that were provided for us. Due to the fact that they were under and academic database shows that they are reliable resources. We used google to find one or two answers and it proved to be very troublesome. We had to double check each answer that we found through google by making sure that all the websites agreed on the information we found.

    I personally loved co-editing, researching, and sharing information with Google docs. Its much less troublesome than having to email the link to one another or save it onto a flash drive. Also, this way you can be sure that your information won’t be lost. My partner and I were able to stay on one page and be up to date on what one another was doing so when we met up we both had a general idea of what was being turned in. I ran into no problems using Google Docs, it proved to be a very efficient way of everybody staying on one page and being aware of who was doing what and what the end result will be. I extremely liked the fact that you could be specific on who was allowed to edit the page, so even though my partner typed the information i could always come back and add extra info. that i found. The only problem I ran into is being unable to locate where the spell check or grammar check is. On a scale of 1 to 10 I would rate my comfort and confidence level with Google Docs as a 7. This is mainly due to my lack of experience with it, it’s hard to locate some of the tools that I need. When it comes to email and co-sharing though I believe Google Docs has proven to be and excellent way to communicate and work.

    One idea that definitely stands out to me is the positive and negative outcomes of South Africa’s participation in the World Cup. Especially the fights and thieves outside of the stadium, it shows that even to this day South Africa is still a developing country where a large percentage still deals with poverty and corruption. Also the separation between races is much more prevalent now due to the publicity and news. The negative publicity also showed that although Apartheid was not legally there, it did sort of linger around and is not completely gone. Although I have to say the Positive did outshine the negative. Not only did South Africa’s economy benefit from this, but so did the Nations pride and ability to stand as one and agree on one thing. Whether they knew it or not, South Africa’s participation in the World Cup brought the nation together despite ethnic differences and disagreements. This stands out to me because after many years of battling and corruption, this one single event dissipated all of that hate. The Boer War stood out to me at todays discussion. I learned that the Boers were actual Europeans at one point that just decided to settle and relocate there. The Idea of a European vs. European war just seems absurd, regardless if they were still in the mother country or not.

  52. cox53802 says:

    Jordan and I decided to split the questions. For our group this was the most efficient way to do things. The pathfinder had good information for the questions it applied to. Several of the questions I was to answer could not be answered with the information on the pathfinders. Therefore, I answered a majority of my questions without using the links supplied for us. I tried to stay with scholarly information sources. First, I tried using Gale and SIRS to answer my questions. This worked for all but two or three questions. Then I went to Google and answered the remainder of my questions. I returned to Google because it is habit and hard to break when it is easily accessed. From using Google in school I have been taught how to filter and use only reliable sources. Therefore, I was not too worried about the credibility of the information. I found Gale the most useful and easiest to navigate and have used it a few time for other classes since this project.
    Google Docs was a new experience for me. I prefer Word over Google Docs when creating or editing writing. When using Docs I had many issues. First of all the when you clicked to type the cursor would appear several line above what you wanted. This cause many mess up in the assignment and later frustration. There was also a lag which in its self created a few problems. While typing the lag would created spelling errors, repetitions and time to go back wait and correct. After the document was finished saving took several minutes. Although I generally did not like using Docs it has good features. One of the features that I like is the ability to share work with other it eliminates the need for multiple drafts. My favorite feature was probably the live chat, which allowed you to show your collaborator ideas and point out things while you both could make changes to the document. I would rate Google Docs with a 6 because the tolerance and effort put into the tool is almost not even worth the added perks.
    Before this I knew about Apartheid but not anything significant. As I learned I realized it was similar to the way African Americans were treated in the United States. The laws similar to Jim Crow prohibited the black South Africans from becoming a more respected people. During our discussions we talked about the difference in South Africa then and now. Then the press was negative. The rest of the world did not agree with the way things were done. They even banned South Africa from global events. This was trying to get South Africa to change its ways. However, South Africa recently received a lot of positive press from the World Cup. This was great for South Africa because it boosted the economy and helped cast a positive light on the people of the country.

  53. Bryce S. says:

    I only used SIRS. I always used it on research projects before and I always will. Ben used Gale and another search engine I forgot the name of. We both did the same thing: skimmed for our answers. I guess that’s because we’d rather search for what we’re looking for instead of reading through a bunch of information we don’t need. It’s worked pretty well for me so far. I don’t believe we strayed from the pathfinder. It’s not like we needed to. As for accuracy and credibility, we-or at least I for sure-stuck to the pathfinder, so we were certain our answers were credible. Accuracy is another thing. It really depends on how we paragraphed and/or summarized the information.
    I did not figure out how to share my Google Document with my partner. I’m not that very technologically knowledgeable. Google Docs is similar to Microsoft Word, but it just doesn’t add up to me. For starters, it isn’t calibrated correctly. I keep having to tap onto the space three sentences below the word I want to edit. I also have to capitalize I’s. I definately prefer Word. However, you (tou being Ms. Lester and Ms. Hamilton) practically require us to use this format. It seems worse at home, though. Docs keeps saying I’m misspelling my words and I dare not try to fix them because I don’t want to lose my place. All in all, I’d rate it at a 3 out of 10.
    I’m sorry, but nothing really stands out personally. I don’t like to personalize things or talk about anything too close to my heart. I guess what struck me the most was how bad segregation was. I’m a Christian, so I strongly believe that everyone was created equal. It pains me to see a certain group of people treated worse than others just because they’re different. However, that’s not really personal, which is what you asked for. I already knew most of the stuff we researched, so it came as no surprise to me. Oh, I know! The shantytowns! I feel sorry for those poor people. I know I’d hate to be in their situation.

  54. martin67115 says:

    me and my partner did stray from the path finder it was difficult to search and we knew that if we entered into Google what we were looking for we would find a fast an immediate answer we didn’t really think about credibility. we where so brought up by the simplicity of powerful search engines it is second nature. their were a few second thoughts about credibility but the results were astounding.

    the sharing of information was difficult and confusing but went through after a while. i didn’t like the fact that stuff could be over written by another person. most people had some trouble with this but we realized that if one researched and one typed than this would go much smoother.it did Google documents was very reliable with saving. Google documents was also very convenient since you never have to send the assignment back and forth.the Google docs itself was relatively easy to work with unlike some of the newer Microsoft. if i had to say how confident I was with Google docs i would say 6 out of 10 because i had a good first encounter but a lot has gone unseen.

    not much stood out at me but it did remind me of a connection i made earlier.i remembered once i read about how all the British and french colonies established Africa as their own. When i saw the soccer game being held in Africa i got to see that they have come along way since poverty and overthrown.they have now become a cultural hurth for any african willing to draw from their roots. it is also amazing how much they’ve accomplished in government and economic stability. it is amazing that they have come so far to even be able to host a popular world event.the research we did kind of pulled this connection back out of my memory. and a few of the questions di peak my interest.

  55. kyle k. says:

    My partner and I used all of the recommended sources. We did stray from the pathfinder quite a bit the information was just too hard to dig up, and time was running short. At least I used google, because it was the only information site I ever use and it was quick and easy. The only reason we strayed was because it was faster and there wasn’t as much digging to get to the information we needed. Google was way more useful than the pathfinder sites, just because there wasn’t as much digging. No I was not concerned about the accuracy of the google sites because I have used google all my life and it hasn’t provided me with false information yet. Take note that google was a last resort.

    Google docks was really cool, maybe I feel this way just because it is the first time I used it. The only problem was it doesn’t have as many options as word and takes considerable set up. After the page got set up it was smooth sailing, except for the occasional bit of lag. But the ability to co edit one document made everything worth it. I would give the system a 6 or 7, because of the setup and lag. I think that google docs is the first step to a whole new version of Microsoft word.

    I honestly didn’t pay enough attention to the work to have any particular question to jump out at me. Maybe I just got the more boring half of the questions. Either way the scramble to get it finished by the end of class made the deep meaning somewhat irrelevant. As for our group discussion, we made some simple grammatical changes to each others docs and made sure everybody knew what they were doing for the homework and how to get to the online questions.

  56. Morgan says:

    My partner and I used the sources provided. We did not use any other database than the ones given to us. I think all the resources given to us we helpful and credible. I think this because we we able to find all the answer we needed using the different sources we we given. I also think they were reliable because they had information that seemed legitimate and answered the questions thoroughly. I also was not concerned about the credibility, because the sources were given to us by our teachers. We had no need to use anything but the resources provided.
    Using google docs was a new experience to me. I think it is useful and convenient to use it. Co-editing and researching was a good way to get the work done fast. I liked using google docs because my partner and I we able to edit and review simultaneously. We could also access this document at any computer. I experienced some trouble working with this program, but no program will be perfect. I would rate google docs at an 8 on a scale from 1-10. Only because I am not use to working with program. I will probably learn to like this program very much once I have worked with it more, and learn more about it.
    What stood out to me was the shantytowns. I was surprised to find out how horrible it was for some people to live. I felt so bad when I found that they had to build the towns out of scrapes and had no sanitation or public services. It made me think how lucky we are to have good sanitation and nice homes. My group also agreed that it was a poor way to live and that we are lucky and grateful to live where we do today.

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