Using Webquests in your Classroom
What are Webquests?
"First developed by Bernie Dodge and Tom March,
working with teachers in California, the WebQuest model has been embraced
by teachers around the world. As a result, a wealth of fully developed
WebQuests exist online that are available for use by you and your students.
WebQuests outline the steps of a learning journey so that students spend
their time exploring important questions and issues without wasting time
wandering around looking for information. WebQuests offer efficiency and
reliability. They also focus on the kinds of higher-level thinking and
problem solving now required by many state curriculum standards and tests.
" (from Canter Net at http://www.canter.net/netclass/activities/L6/slide1.html
Elements of a Webquest
WebQuests can be built to address a variety of curricular
goals. Whatever academic discipline or disciplines they are built to address,
all WebQuests should exhibit certain characteristics.
WebQuests include the following six elements:
Introduction: Sets the stage for the WebQuest. It creates
interest in the activity, provides background information and foreshadows
what is to come.
Task: Describes what students are expected to do in terms
of both process and product. The task should involve higher-order thinking
skills and the transformation of information. It should be both doable
Process: Describes the steps that students should go
through to accomplish the task. Because the steps of the process are clearly
defined and provided in the WebQuest, teachers are able to access and
implement ready-made WebQuests easily and effectively.
Resources: A set of information resources that are needed
to complete the task. Because resource materials are provided, students
can focus on using information rather than on finding information. A variety
of resources are included. Some resources may be Internet-based, including
Web documents, experts available via E-mail, or e real-time conferencing
and searchable databases on the Internet. Other resources may include
books, magazines, newspapers, and CD-ROMs that are available in the classroom
or school library.
Evaluation: Identifies the criteria for evaluation, often
through use of a rubric. This helps both students and teachers understand
elements of the process and product through which students are expected
to demonstrate their learning.
Conclusion: Brings closure to the WebQuest. It reminds
students of what they’ve learned and can point them in new directions
for further exploration and learning.
As you access the WebQuests online, you will assess their quality in
terms of the following.
* An introduction orients students to the activity.
* The activity is based on a doable and interesting task.
* Students follow a clear process.
* Students are provided with resources from the Internet and other sources.
* The evaluation allows students to demonstrate knowledge in an authentic
and relevant way.
* A concluding activity brings the learning together.
Quality of Student Learning
* Engages students in an inquiry-based activity.
* Develops relevant and authentic knowledge and skills.
* Involves collaboration among students.
* Supports the learners' thinking at the levels of analysis, synthesis,
* Involves the transformation of information, creating new knowledge or
* Students demonstrate their knowledge to an authentic audience, either
real or simulated.
Examples of Tasks:
Taskonomy of WebQuests
- This link provides ideas for a variety of tasks addressing curricular
design and differentiated learning
Use the following to help orient you on the design of a
Use the worksheet
to evaluate three examples of Webquests. Considering the elements of a
Webquest and instructional design, use the worksheet to evaluate the three
Webquests you've chosen.
Plan your WebQuest
Use a blank template to jot down ideas for your WebQuest. Meet with your
media specialist to collaborate and work on the Webquest. Also, "Tech
CEUs" available for curriculum integration projects collaborated
on with your media specialist.
WebQuest Building Blocks
Adapt Existing WebQuests
WebQuests Design Patterns and Templates
Creating your own Webquest
Refer to your assignment: Creating
Webquests for Greenwich Public Schools Teachers
Go to Webquest Wizard OR use your account with FinalSite to create a new page.
- Set-up pages for each of the steps in a WebQuest: Introduction, Task, Process, Resources, Evaluation and Conclusion
Add your content to each of these pages.
Add resources links - should include name of the site and full website
addresses. Work with your media specialist to add quality resources both print - and digital.
Find clip art. Possible sources:
- Provides a copyright-friendly collection of images and pictures
for educational use.
Clip Art -Any use of clip art from Discovery needs to have the
following tag: "Clip art licensed from the Clip Art Gallery
Save or download the image to your desktop. If you use a copyrighted
image, you must include citation information.
- Add images and format the pages.
- Save and publish the pages.
Posting your Webquest
- Use our new Web Content Management System - FinalSite - and create a Webquest using the elements presented in this workshop.