Project 3: Website for a social cause
For this project, you will research 10 little-known, thought-provoking facts you didn’t know about a cause you care about. For example, maybe you care about hunger in the U.S., You’ll do the research, then use it to create a website with an idea for a national campaign similar to those featured on DoSomething.org. Finally, you will heighten awareness of your cause by sharing your website on your social media networks and, if you’d like, submit your idea for your campaign here, on the DoSomething.org website.
Think about a cause that you feel comfortable sharing via your own social networks. Boyd says, “People are exposed to the things that their friends choose to share. If that content is valued, it is spread further through friend networks.” Therefore, your site should have “spreadability” so that it can be shared in an effort to “leverage [your] own networks” and heighten awareness of the issue.
Your campaign should: 1) strongly influence viewers and challenge them to understand social problems differently; 2) motivate viewers to want to do something about the problem—present at least one manageable solution that people anywhere in the U.S. can implement. You’ll see lots of examples on DoSomthing.org.
This approach requires outside research and an annotated bibliography of credible sources from the library, online research, or field research (interviews, participation in events relating to your cause, etc.) You will create your site using a free website building platform. While there are many website building platforms available for creating free, aesthetically pleasing websites, I recommend weebly.com. This platform requires no knowledge of HTML and CSS coding, and offers a very user-friendly, intuitive interface. If you have experience building websites and would like to use a different platform, be sure to let me know in advance.
Guidelines and requirements:
1) Explore various campaigns on DoSomething.org until you get a good idea for how the site works and how the campaigns are set up.
2) Brainstorm a list of causes you care about. A good cause to create a campaign for is one that can be researched (like the hunger example above), and one for which you can answer the questions on the DoSomething.org submission application.
3) Create an annotated bibliography with a summary of each source and an explanation of how the source is useful. From your sources, decide which are the 10 most interesting, least well-known, most startling facts about the problem that informs your cause and plan a way to display them on your website.
4) Plan your national campaign: What’s your cause? What is the timeframe? What will you ask people to do—donate something? Host an event? Improve a space? Make something? Share something? Start something? Take a stand? What will people do to “Know it,” “Plan it,” “Do it,” “Prove it”? Remember, your solution must be one that anyone in the U.S. can participate in.
5) Create a site map that briefly outlines the pages on your website. Following the DoSomething.org templates, create an outline for where you’ll include information in a manner similar to “Know it,” “Plan it,” “Do it,” “Prove it,” and anticipated FAQs. One of your pages must include your 10 facts and a list of works cited.
6) Register for a free account on weebly.com and create your site.
7) Share your site on your social networks and collect feedback from your viewers.
8) Submit your idea for your campaign on the DoSomething.org site if you are <25 years old. Apparently, if you’re 26+ you’re considered old!
To submit Project 3 for assessment, submit the following to your Project 3 forum on Sakai before 11:55 pm on Saturday, November 7.
- Annotated bibliography
- Project 3 postwrite
- The link to your weebly site