The City Rings
Date du début: 1 sept. 2015,
Date de fin: 31 août 2017
The project 'The city rings' focuses on the world of sound, a hitherto seldom explored domain, at least in secundary education. Sound can be directly perceived by the senses, can be relatively easy analysed with scientific equipment. This challenging 'hands on' approach will motivate students to really explore sounds and the effect they have have on the word at large. Our first goal here is to coach the students to come up with the right kind of questions and develop problem-solving strategies while using ICT-tools they hadn't used before. We are certain that the development of this new methodology and the use of these new ICT-tools can be transferred on other domains (away from 'sound').
In the course of these two years students (16-18 years old), staff, parents' representatives and the city council will work together and organise a large number of activities that have two focus points. We will be coached by 'Aifoon vzw' a professional organisation subsidized by the government and who have 'sound' as their point of investigation.
The first focus is on sound as an element that (often subconciously) influences the well-being of students in schools and citizens in cities. By measuring sounds objectively in spaces in schools and in cities we'll come up with mathematical figures and by administering quesitionnaires to students and citizens we'll find out about the subjective appreciation of sound environments. We'll certainly also investigate the sounds in concerts, on earphones of mp3 players to see if, when and how they can be dangerous. These research activities should come up with data that are compiled in data banks which will allow for making comparisons and drawing conclusions. All these results will be published on our webblog 'Sound check'. This should result in a number of recommendations : the 'Sound Charter'.
The second focus is on sound as an expression of identity. In the same way we visualize the person on the other side of the phone by listening to the voice, we experience the soundscape of a city as an expression of its identity. What's more even our listening is culturally determined. We want to investigate what cultural difference and similarities we detect when we make our subconscious analyses and judgments explicit. We will need the new ICT tools in our 'hunt' for the sounds of a city, recreating the soundscape we think reflects our cities best. This should result in a number of sound recordings (sound files, soundscapes...) and a number of articles (reflections on sound and identity) which will be published on our community 'Earbook'.
The fact that we publish our results on websites, give presentations of our results during meetings with students from other schools, parent's committees and city councils, have our results published in newspapers and broadcasts over the radio ensures that this project has a far larger impact than just on a number of students directly taking part in this project. On the long term this project will generate a raised awareness for our sound environment, affect the planning of spaces in school buildings and the building sites of cities. In the end working for a better sound environment will make Europe and this world a better place to live.
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