The website competition for schools, now in its ninth year, kicks off today. SWITCH wants school students from all over Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein to design their own website together with their teacher.
The success story of the Junior Web Award began in 2007, when the SWITCH foundation launched the competition to mark its 20th anniversary. As the pioneer of the Swiss Internet, the foundation wants to promote the latest generation's World Wide Web know-how.
Creating their own piece of the Internet
The classes taking part can design and publish their own website free of charge. They take a playful approach to learning how to work with modern communication technologies and discovering the full spectrum of web design from choosing a topic to creating a concept, putting together a structure and handling technical implementation. They are given information materials, guides and free content management software to get them started. "The Junior Web Award is a simple and fun way for children to come up with an appealing website without having to spend a lot of time on the layout, design and programming," says teacher Rita Burtscher of Sennweid secondary school in Baar (canton of Zug).
Young project managers
The competition makes an ideal project to encourage active learning. Secondary-school teacher Roland Spycher from Pully (canton of Vaud): "Once they understand what goes into creating a website, children are really keen to try it out for themselves." Classes can be split up into different project groups. This is clearly a popular option with teachers, since 680 of them have overseen the creation of 1,200 fully fledged websites since 2007.
The competition is now open to all classes at primary schools and level I and II secondary schools in Switzerland and Liechtenstein. After signing up at www.juniorwebaward.ch, entrants must produce a website by themselves on a topic of their choosing. The deadline for submitting projects is 11 March 2015. After that date, there will be a public vote, and the websites will be assessed by a panel of professional judges. The winning classes will be invited to an awards ceremony on 19 May 2015 at the Kongresshaus Zürich. There are some great prizes to be won thanks to sponsors Samsung and Google. Katja Reichenstein will host the event in three languages.
For more information and to see the winning projects from the past three years, visit the website: www.juniorwebaward.ch
As a partner of the universities, SWITCH brought the Internet to Switzerland more than 25 years ago. Today, the non-profit organisation with 100 employees at its headquarters in Zurich develops Internet services for lecturers, researchers and students, as well as for commercial customers. SWITCH stands for security on the Internet.