—Learning & Leading with Technology, v32 n8 p30, 31, 34, 35 May 2005.
Are these students talking about their classmates? No, they are describing the Signing Avatar characters--3-D figures who appear on the EnViSci Network Web site and sign the resources and activities in American Sign Language (ASL) or Signed English (SE). During the 2003-04 school year, students in schools for the deaf and hard of hearing participated in the field test of What's the Weather? and Are We Getting the Oxygen We Need?—two of the signed EnViSci3-6 joined hearing students from Maine to California in examining the water cycle, observing cloud cover and precipitation, measuring humidity and air temperature, and using the Beaufort scale to estimate wind strength. Another group in Grades 5-8 investigated the respiratory and circulatory systems, measured aerobic-activity levels and pulse-recovery times, researched the effects of smoking, and voted on whether cigarettes should be harder to buy.