Monday, June 29, 2009

First Web Quest!

That was a big job! That took me several days longer than I thought.

My first thought was: I was in the hunt for the perfect websites. Finding no perfect match--I searched a lot longer than I thought humanly possible. I was also in the hunt for age appropriate music, video and articles.

I was disappointed how my links worked and that I could not make it a paperless assignment. Google Docs kept dropping my links. I would try the link--it would work and then the next day it would disappear. Now I have my Google Docs permanently frozen! Can even go into create a new one.

Here's my WebQuest link:

I think after sitting for another 6 hours today on this web quest I need to go outside and do something physical! Yea! Karen

Sunday, June 21, 2009

WebQuest--A Major Production

Okay--now I have done some readings on WebQuests and I have looked at many different examples of WebQuests and now I am feeling a little overwhelmed! I think I have settled on for my template. It seems to do a nice job on walking me through the steps. I am just awaiting an okay on my revised proposal so that I can jump right in.

In many of the readings on WebQuests they emphasize that using a webquest allows students to use information rather than looking for it.

So while I am waiting for my proposal I need to finish collecting my online resources. Then put together the worksheets and the activities.

Feeling a little overwhelmed--but this too shall pass! Karen :0

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

My First Encounter with Web Quests

According to Thomas March Article, Revisiting WebQuests in a Web 2 World, a web quest is a "scaffold learning structure that use the world wide web to motivate students to investigate." He also said that, "scaffolding, motivation, thinking and compelling online resources stand central to every web quest".

So I thought wow a web quest is going to be a great higher level thinking tool to use with students. So I was with a veteran teacher who really loves to use technology and she said she does not like web quests--didn't see the value in them. A science teacher who use them fairly frequently thinks they are great for inquiry learning. So now I am on the quest to see if web quests can be an effective web 2.0 tool to use with Middle School Students.

There are a couple of great ideas that I got from this article:
First the Thinking Routines.

I want to make a poster and start practicing thinking with students.

Thinking Routine
1. What do you see
2. What do you think about it?
3. What does it make you wonder?

1. Make a claim about the topic
2. Identify support for your claim
3. Ask a question related to your claim
What Makes You Say That?
1. What's going on here?
2. What do you see that makes you say that?
The goal is to move students beyond learning as "knowledge" to view learning as "understanding".
So often I see learning going on with no understanding--so my question to ponder today--is that the students fault or the teachers? And can a web quest move students to understanding?
Til later------Karen :)