Monday, August 17, 2009


What are WebQuests? A WebQuest (WQ) is an "inquiry-oriented activity in which some or all of the information that learners interact with comes from resources on the Internet, optionally supplemented" (Dodge, 1997) with hyperlinks and tasks to complete. Last year during a SOSE unit for university Aaron and I developed a WebQuest on the water cycle. This WQ was an adventure based with you being a national park ranger in Australia finding how and why it is important to conserve water. The WQ was made by using a PowerPoint and linking the slides together with hyperlinks to different information websites, activities, games and assessment. The method used in delivering the questions was from TELSTAR. TELSTAR offers a powerful and stimulating structure for teachers and students to learn together in well-defined phases of learning:

  • TUNE IN - to the issue or theme being studied

  • EXPLORE - students' knowledge, attitudes and questions, as well as the methodology to be adopted

  • LOOK - for information

  • SORT - the information

  • TEST - the information using the hypothesis developed in the explore phase

  • ACT - upon the learnings of the unit

  • REFLECT - upon the learning of the unit

Using WQs as a teaching tool is a very engaging activity for students compared to traditional teaching. Traditional teaching involves students and teachers looking up information in books and websites at random - which can take a long time if you are sent on a link to a different focus. But with WQs students can travel at their own pace and can go back to find information on their topic by clicking on different links. It takes the guess work out for the students to find appropriate website. On the downside the teacher has to find the relevant material for the WQ which takes a great deal of time. Preparing the WQ by looking up appropriate site and linking them to essential learnings in the curriculum can be hard where as traditional teaching is more straight down the line. However a positive for this the teacher can keep a copy of the WQ and use it for new classes or share with other learning managers. Picture - Webquests C/O WebQuests in Social Studies

No comments:

Post a Comment