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Annotation: Editor's Summary

Title:  Down the Drain
ID:   DLESE-000-000-001-635

The community reviewers gave Down the Drain a modal score of 4 (highest possible) or 3 on all of the selection criteria. The scores for Robustness as a Digital Resource and Scientific Accuracy were particularly strong. The lowest score was on Ability to Motivate or Inspire Learners, where the modal score was 3 on each of the three rubrics. On the other hand, individual educator-reviewers spoke highly of the student reaction to the activity, with comments like "my students loved taking control of their learning with a hands on approach."

The resource was strongly recommended for use with students who are economically-disadvantaged, have limited experience with technology, have low literacy level or are classified as learning disabled, by five or more educators who have observed the resource being used by such students. None of these educators advised against using this resource with such populations.

Our specialist reviewers found no errors of fact in the resource. They noted that the resource might have been strengthened by more discussion of hypothesis testing, and that the current database might not support the testing of certain hypotheses. Pedagogy reviewers praised the way in which the project involves family members and combines math and science in a meaningful way.

The most substantial drawback with this resource is that the Teachers Guide is not yet available, although promised for Fall 2003. Our reviewers recommend that the Teachers Guide should include grading rubrics for the student activities, and discussion of the alignment of the resource with education standards.

Kim Kastens, 31 July 2003

Community Review System