The High School Sydney Region Jeopardy Tournament via Video Conference kicked off two weeks ago and already it’s making headlines! Heat 4 of the Tournament brought together four schools, two from Sydney and two from regional centres in New South Wales – one over 600km away. One of the schools, Colyton High Trade School had a reporter and a photographer from the Penrith Star newspaper there for the whole match. And to make a great story even better, they actually won their heat!
DESPITE never having watched an episode of the game show Jeopardy, year 8 Colyton High School Trade School students won their first game, uniquely via video conferencing. As in the TV show, the student game consisted of a series of questions with money attached.
Questions were specified to test students on history, spelling skills, geography and all things Australian.
Facilitator Stuart Hasic, as well as teams from Murray, Randwick Girls and Bathurst high schools, could see each other on a plasma TV screen, using microphones and audio systems to communicate with each other.
The space bar on a keyboard was used as a buzzer and students watched a projector screen to see the questions, calling out to the microphone with their answers.
Colyton High School Trade School computer co-ordinator Paul Kerr said students love the interactive classes because they don’t have to travel but are still able to communicate with students interstate.
The Star asked if they missed face-to-face interaction and all students shook their heads. “It’s really fun to see other schools far away”, Isabella said. “This system is a lot better it’s a thrill but you feel safe in your own environment.”