At Ashlawn Elementary in Arlington, VA, students are using computers as a communication and processing tool in conjunction with the time-honored methods of experimentation and group work. Coordinator Bonnie Bracey, who is also a member of the NII Advisory Council, has used the Kids Network (or Kids Net, as it is commonly known) with great success. Kids Net combines on-line computer activity with real-world experimentation and interaction. To get kids accustomed to using email for exchanging information, Kids Net's introductory project, the "Hello" unit, asks kids to design an ideal pet. The students exchange thoughts and plans for their pet by e-mail, as well as debate electronically as to what traits the perfect pet should have. They learn to communicate with other young students; they were entranced, for example, by stories from youngsters in Vancouver concerning a cougar which found its way into woman's house and got stuck.