The ARRL Letter
Vol. 21, No. 48
December 13, 2002
==>ROCK STAR GIVES MAJOR DONATION TO "THE BIG PROJECT"
Hoping that his donation will spur others to contribute to "The Big
Project," veteran rock star and well-known amateur Joe Walsh, WB6ACU,
given in a major way to ARRL's Education and Technology Fund. ARRL Chief
Development Officer Mary Hobart, K1MMH, says the "significant gift"
through the Joseph F. Walsh Foundation will fund an additional eight
schools in the ARRL Education and Technology Program.
ARRL President Jim Haynie, W5JBP, expressed his gratitude for Walsh's
dedication and support to The Big Project's goals and aims. "I am
particularly pleased with Joe's donation, as it emphasizes his belief in
our school project and more importantly, investing in the future of
Amateur Radio," Haynie said. "The additional schools that will be
into the program as a result of this donation represent a big step in
increasing the number of students participating in the ARRL Science and
Walsh, best-known as a guitarist, vocalist and songwriter with The
and The James Gang, has been an active Amateur Radio operator for more
than 37 years. He's also an avid collector of Collins Radio gear. The
amount of his donation was not made public.
The Big Project--as the program is popularly known--highlights Amateur
Radio as a significant resource for teachers in classrooms as well as
enrichment and after-school programs. The 40 pilot schools now in the
program receive a complete Amateur Radio station, technical library and
curriculum that makes technology fun and relevant for the participating
Walsh's contribution was one of 3500 made by ARRL members,
who--together--have raised more $225,000 to fund the Education &
Technology Program in 2003.
==>CURRICULUM REVIEW IS NEXT ON "THE BIG PROJECT" AGENDA
With the addition of 14 new schools--13 pilot schools and one progress
grant school--in December, the ARRL Education and Technology
Big Project"--is up to a total of 41 participating schools. That's more
than double the number of schools involved since the program's launch in
Early in 2003, the 13 pilot schools will be receiving complete Amateur
Radio station equipment, a curriculum and a technical library, said ARRL
Education and Technology Program coordinator Jerry Hill, KH6HU. The 14th
school, which already uses Amateur Radio in the classroom, will receive
$500 progress grant.
More than new schools is being added to the Education and Technology
Program. Hill said that as the program nears its first full year in
existence, an evaluation of the curriculum is now under way.
"We have a new draft of the curriculum, and we'll be testing it in all
the schools, asking them to add their lessons and activities and report
back in June," Hill said. "Then we'll get a new one out for September
post it on the Web. The new curriculum will be out there for anyone to
use." Hill says he does not expect Web posting until late next year,
Hill said that The Big Project will update the curriculum yearly, so the
program can offer teachers and students a continually improved program.
One of the first major efforts will be to split the text of the
into two parts--elementary and secondary. That way, Hill said, the
can offer developmentally appropriate levels of instruction while still
teaching similar concepts to all participants.
The program's first pilot school was DeGolyer Elementary School in
Texas. DeGolyer, which tested the program beginning in 2001, got
major-market media exposure December 9 when its activities were featured
in a Dallas Morning News article. Under the direction of teacher Sanlyn
Kent, KD5LXO--who was not a ham when she began working with the
at DeGolyer--the program has turned out 30 new young hams in fewer than
This is a Grant program that will give away $65,000 in cash and
products/merchandise. The description and link to more information are
Submit a Grant Proposal by explaining how you and your friends
new ways to be active. All applicants must be in grades 3
through 8 and
enter on behalf of a classroom of no more than 35 students or on
of a qualified non-profit community based organization. So if
you are too
old... pass it on to your sister, brother, cousin or younger
I suspect anyone that has been on the web for any length of time has
gotten the Nigerian Scam letter, or something similar. This is where $23
million dollars or so needs to be gotten out of the country due to
political concerns/changes. The following site shows what one person has
done ... and it is actually quite funny!
Getting people involved in amateur radio is a world wide concern. Some
progress is being made with ARDF as shown by this excerpt from the
minutes of the IARU Region 1 ARDF Working Group:
The 3rd European Youth ARDF Championship held in Nessebar/Bulgaria in
which girls and boys up to the age of 15 competed against each other.
were 70 participants from 10 member societies of IARU Region 1.
The 11th ARDF World Championships 2002 were held in Tatranske Matliare
Slovakia, with 309 competitors from 29 member societies. All three
IARU were represented at this World Championship. The huge number of
participants resulted in a new record for competitors and participating
More information about "The Big Project" is available on the ARRL Web
A brief description of the program is located at:
The FAQ (copied below) is located at:
The program brochure (PDF format) is located at:
Amateur Radio Education & Technology Program
Aka "The Big Project"
What is the Amateur Radio Education & Technology Program?
The Amateur Radio Education & Technology Program is an educational
program to enhance student learning
through authentic application of mathematical and scientific concepts.
The project emphasizes integration of math,
science, writing and speaking, geography, technology, and social
responsibility within a global society.
To encourage teachers who may not be aware of the educational potential
of Amateur Radio, the ARRL has
developed the Amateur Radio Education & Technology Program, which will
include the following:
Classroom Bookshelf -- provides schools with publications related
to the use of technology in wireless
On-Line Sourcebook -- provides tips and ideas for teaching wireless
technology to youth in schools,
community groups and clubs
Radio Lab Handbook -- handbook of lesson plans and projects to help
teachers provide authentic,
technological experiences for their students
Stations in Schools -- provide Amateur Radio equipment to establish
a school station, for qualifying
Progress Grants -- grant awards to teachers currently using amateur
radio in their classrooms.
What is the Classroom Bookshelf?
The Classroom Bookshelf consists of a series of selected ARRL
publications to serve as a reference library for the
Pilot Schools. These publications include license manuals, handbooks and
books on specific topics of interest to
amateurs. As a gesture of commitment, a local Amateur Radio Club is
asked to purchase the Classroom Bookshelf
(at a significantly discounted price) for the Pilot School.
What is the On-Line Sourcebook?
The On-Line Sourcebook will be a Web site with a collection of teaching
tips, demonstration, lesson plans,
laboratory activities and helpful information for teachers. The
Sourcebook is meant to be a living document for
teachers, by teachers. Teachers will be encouraged to share their ideas
and experiences with others by submitting
lessons to the Sourcebook for other teachers to tryout with their
What is the Radio Lab Handbook?
The Radio Lab Handbook, currently under development, will include
information, guidelines, and resource topics such as:
How concepts addressed in Amateur Radio can be used to meet
National Educational Standards
Frequently asked questions on how to approach school officials to
approve use of Amateur Radio / Short-wave listening in the classroom
Frequently asked questions by parents about Amateur Radio
Unit plans, lesson plans, and demonstrations, emphasizing authentic
activities in wireless communications for students
Bibliography and resources (ARRL support services; how to find
local radio clubs and ARRL Field Organization volunteer assistance,
books, Web sites,
Sample layouts of classroom Amateur Radio stations and short-wave
listening posts. Emphasis on educational usefulness and student safety
Guidance on meeting the Federal Communications Commission's rules
on exposure to radio frequency emissions
Suggestions for accommodating special needs students.
Information on becoming a licensed radio amateur for students who
want to earn their own Amateur Radio licenses
Radio Lab Handbook is being developed for specific age group levels,
beginning with middle school. Critiques of the handbook will be
regularly solicited from
teachers, so that improvements and revisions can be made.
What is meant by Stations In Schools?
The Stations In Schools program will provide Amateur Radio / Short-wave
listening equipment for teachers who can demonstrate plans to implement
educational program centered on wireless communications.
Equipment provided may be:
A compact short-wave receiver
An Amateur Radio Station devoted to specific modes of operation
(such as amateur satellites, digital modes, amateur television)
A general purpose Amateur Radio Station, HF, VHF, UHF, or
The equipment will be provided at no cost to the school or teacher.
Assistance of volunteers from local Amateur Radio clubs or the ARRL's
Field Organization may be called upon to provide technical assistance to
the teacher for
What Is A Progress Grant And How Do I Apply For One?
Teachers in both public and private schools who enrich their classrooms
through imaginative means such as Amateur Radio often must do so at
expense. The Amateur Radio Education & Technology Program provides
modest Progress Grants to teachers who are currently using Amateur Radio
classroom and who need financial assistance for specific purposes.
This may include such things as station upkeep and maintenance (e.g.,
replacing a defective cable, equipment repair), upgrades (e.g.,
replacing an old satellite
tracking computer program with a newer improved version), and various
supplies and consumables.
Progress Grants have a limit of $500, and will be awarded on a quarterly
basis. The application will be held on file for one year, after which
time the school will have
to file a new application.
How Do I Get Involved With "The Big Project?"
Schools interested in using amateur radio in their curriculum, using it
as an enrichment program, or as a club activity, are welcome to apply to
become a Pilot School.
Schools currently using amateur radio in the classroom are welcome to
apply for a Progress Grant to assist them in maintaining their station
or enhancing their
program. Applications are available on the ARRL Web site.
An Evolving Project:
The ARRL Amateur Radio Education & Technology Program is being
implemented in phases. Phase I, the application phase, is up and
running. Phase II, curriculum
development, is underway and involves a review of existing available
materials and development of new curriculum including authentic
activities for students. Phase
III, the implementation and evaluation phase, will involve expanding the
number of schools and evaluating and updating the curriculum.
The Amateur Radio Education & Technology Program is a work in progress.
We will continue to evaluate, update and review existing material. And
we will continue
to look for new, fresh material to introduce to schools.
ARRL is committed to education and the future of youth in wireless
The ARRL Amateur Radio "Education & Technology program is funded in
large part by voluntary contributions. To find out how to support the
visit our donations page. that regard.
Just a reminder that the deadline for the December Key-Klix is this
Monday, December 2, and I'm assembling this issue. Submissions can be
e-mailed to me or to keyklix(a)sbarc.org, faxed to the number below, or
dropped off at my house by prearrangement.
Mack Stanton, KD6NBZ
230 Bonnie Lane
Santa Barbara, CA 93108