This project has been a challenging, yet fun
experience. We began to work on the site in October and it has
taken about six months to finish it. Our web club meets once a
week, but we did TONS of work in between. This is the plan we
took the ThinkQuest categories and thought about
subjects that interested us. We made a list
and then voted. It was unanimous. We all
Our coach said that the best way to
get information was to visit a couple of area mines.
She found two and planned the trips. It was so
much better to see it in person rather than in a
We all did research even though we
didn't all like it very much. We wanted our site
give kids all of the info they need to do rock and
mineral assignments. We needed lots of
understandable facts on
We took most of our own pictures.
Our pictures come from visits to mines, jewelry
stores, and even Ebay! Some mineral pictures
were hard to find and we emailed some very nice
people that were selling chunks of them on Ebay.
Then we had a problem with Caterpillar, Inc., a
company that sells mining equipment. We
applied for permission to use some of their graphics
on our site. We received permission but we
found out it was only for a year. Our coach
said that we couldn't take them off the site after a year.
We couldn't use them after all. Then we
emailed a used machinery website and they let us use
any pictures we wanted! That was great!
We created the website layout,
design, and theme. We wanted an upbeat site that
wasn't like the dark ones that we found on the
Internet. We had to make ours different from
the ones we were seeing and we think making it more
kid-friendly did that. We voted when there
were disagreements and everyone accepted the results
of the vote.
We split up the jobs based on our
strengths. It didn't take us long to figure
out that some people did research very well.
Some were good at taking the information and putting
it into their own words. One of us was a GREAT
artist! We were lucky enough to have a few
team members who took good notes and others who took
good pictures. We assigned tasks based on
strengths AND whether we were available when a job
needed to be done.
Editing. We really don't like
to edit. That didn't matter, though, because
it had to be done. Everyone was assigned pages
to edit and we were surprised to see how many errors
there were even though we thought we were careful.
A couple of team members came in every day to make
Finally, the site is done. We
feel that we met the following challenges:
We took a major topic and
narrowed it down so that it would fit the
needs of a younger audience.
We took a topic that was hard
to understand and made it understandable for
our younger visitors.
We worked through problems
when we disagreed or when we just weren't
able to get info we needed. We didn't
quit looking for good machinery graphics
when we had problems with Caterpillar's. We just kept
looking until we found someone else who
would help us. When we couldn't do a
job alone, we looked for [and got] adult
partners to help us. We included them
on our Citations page.
And, when we wanted a more
global view, we searched for a long time to
find a team member who could help us.
It took us four months to find Kris and he
is truly a member of our team!
Caley took notes
and pictures on our trips. She wrote some of
the mineral and trip reports. She also helped
design the website, find missing graphics, transfer
typed information into the website, edit, and get
our email permissions. She worked on
the survey, too.
Jennifer took notes on one of
our trips. She wrote a LOT of our longest reports
for the site. She also helped design the website,
find missing graphics, edit, and add hyperlinks to the
site. She also worked hard on the survey and added
tables to the site.
Shaun took notes and pictures on our
trips. He helped design the site and choose its
theme. He is responsible for all of the
navigation, mine, and miner graphics on the site.
He also did reports on rocks and minerals and edited
Kris became a member
after the design had been chosen. He lives in
Bulgaria and has researched and written reports for the
site. He visited a quarry for more info and lots
of videos. Kris wrote several pages.
He helped the team by giving us a more global view of
mining and the environment. He also edited site
Marlin did reports on rocks and minerals
and is responsible for adding all of the pages to the
website. He helped search for graphics and links
and did all of the text tags for the pictures.
Marlin edited the site, too.
Charlie took pictures
on the trips and did reports on rocks and minerals.
He helped choose the design and theme of the site.
He helped edit and find missing graphics.
Coach helped us find
research sources. She arranged [and went on] all of our trips. She helped us find our team member from Bulgaria. She advised us but let us make our own decisions.
She gave us "brain food" when we needed it and
pushed us when we slowed down. She taught us
how to use FrontPage and Photoshop and helped us
find errors in our site.
This was a team effort and
everyone added their skills and talents wherever they were
needed. We worked very hard on this site so that at
the end we could truthfully say:
We did our BEST!