Shaar HaNegev students use World ORT computers to make peace


04 January 2008 Shaar HaNegev students use World ORT computers to make peace The Peres Centre for Peace has launched an educational programme at Shaar HaNegev in which students used laptops, donated by World ORT, to take on the roles of Israeli and Palestinian political leaders. As journalists from ABC, Reuters, Galei Zahal, Al Jazeera and Channel 9 looked on, the students used software, called PeaceMaker, to make far-reaching diplomatic, security and economic decisions. Their participation was made possible thanks to the portable computers, which World ORT gave to the school so that lessons could continue in bomb shelters and other areas safe from the frequent Palestinian rocket attacks from the nearby Gaza Strip. Communications teacher Ayelet Goldenberg said: This activity contributed a lot to the pupils both in the way they had to deal directly with the issue of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and indirectly in the way they saw the part the media played in reporting their own activities. The use of laptops made is possible to bring the technology into the activity rather than the other way around. It was wonderful that the pupils were using new technology to study and on the other hand that they were doing so in a secure environment. Mor Bider, one of the 15 Grade 11 participants, said: It was really cool to be the first ones ever to take part in this activity and that we were able to express our opinions to the media. It made us realise that these laptops open up new learning possibilities for us and we really appreciate World ORTs donation. We dont see the laptops, or our use of them, as something to be taken for granted.