Every year, the research question for the project evolves around a different theme. Past themes have included climate change and water.

Phase 1 – Setting the groundwork - September to November

Teachers that express their interest in participating in the project contact the coordinating team to establish a partnership. From the first weeks of September, teachers introducue the theme to their classes by presenting their students with an overarching question. From this starting point, students further investigate the topic by developing their own questions and collaborating with each other to find answers and deepen their understanding of the issue.

In some cases, in order to establish the authenticity of the research questions, local experts from the community make presentations to the students using locally relevant data.

As students work, they investigate their hypotheses, reject or amend ideas based on new information, and synthesize their ideas. They prepare to present their research questions and give a status update of their research at the First International Meeting.

Phase 2 – Establishing partnerships – December

An international meeting is scheduled where classes present their initial research questions and give a brief introduction about themselves and their community. One goal of this initial meeting is to identify common research interests among participants and to establish parterships between classrooms who are researching similar issues.

Phase 3 – Research, developments and updates - January to April

Classes continue to research their questions using a variety of sources including the internet, books, subject matter experts and discuss their findings in the Knowledge Forum, the online asynchronous forum for collaborative learning. Teachers may set up one-on-one meetings with their partner classrooms or work alone, preparing to present again at the next international meeting.

Students present their research findings and further questions at international meetings that are scheduled monthly.

Phase 4 - Conclusions – May

Students present their final conclusions at an international meeting. They reflect on their learning and set goals for future investigations.