Part 1

Chapter Contents

Part 3

[Introduction] [Projects] [Interpersonal] [Informational] [Pedagogical]
[Research] [Professional] [Navigational] [Conclusion]


A software utility "WebWhacker" offers unprecedented possibilities for teachers with limited access to the Web to download entire Web pages (complete with graphics and backgrounds) for storage on their own hard disks. "WebWhacker" affords student researchers the opportunity to read through documents and view images off line and to print or save only relevant information. Within the guidelines of copyright law, teachers can use some of the downloaded information to prepare classroom lectures or information collection activities. (A trial copy of "WebWhacker" is available for both DOS and Macintosh platforms and can be downloaded from their Web site.)


One such example of an information collection activity using information available on the Web is called "WebQuest". WebQuest (designed originally by Bernie Dodge from San Diego State University) is an inquiry-oriented activity in which some or all of the information that learners use comes from preselected resources on the Internet. WebQuests provide an excellent means for students (individually or in small groups) to assess the variety and quality of information available to them via the Internet. According to Tom March, member of the Education First Applications Design Team and author of "Searching for China:A WebQuest" :

"Students peruse the linked sites related to the individual's learning task, then come away with an understanding that is integral to completing the group's task. The group members work together to teach what they have learned to their partners. Finally, higher-level questions serve to guide learners toward more challenging thinking and thus a deeper understanding of the topic." (Tom March from What's on the Web? A Sampler of Educational Applications on the World Wide Web).


Articles relating to WebQuests

There are several ways in which teachers can adopt / use / preselect Internet sites for classroom use. Two articles which give excellent suggestions for turning Web resources into activities appropriate for learners are: Filamentality: Activity Formats by SDSU/Pacific Bell Fellows and Online Research Modules by J. McKenzie (from September issue of From Now On: Education Technology Journal).


Articles relating to WebQuests (continued)

Additional information relating to Webquests include Kathy Schrock's Web Quests in Our Future : The Teachers's Role in Cyberspace (including a 16-slide presentation based on the information found at Mr. Dodge's site), Active Learning on the Web: K-12 Version (a presentation to the faculty of La Jolla Country Day School, August 1996 ) and an article Distance Learning on the World Wide Web (published in 1996 Computer Trainer's Personal Trainer's Guide).

Other Examples of WebQuests

EDSITEment has produced a series of online activities as they relate to history and social studies. These guides are based on the themes of crossing borders in history and language, literature and myth Teachers will find over twenty different web-based lesson plans.

Several teachers and teacher trainers have produced Webquests for their own classes. These include: A Feudalism WebQuest: Japan and Europe by Daniel McDowell (students look at the feudal societies in Japan and Europe through documents on the WWW), War and the Presidents by Laurie Furman and Debra Hake (similarities and differences between the Trojan War and several American wars), Madagascar by Rhonda Wixom (following an assignment from EDTEC 596 at San Diego State University), Eyes on Art (developed by the Education First Applications Design Team) , Expedition to Encanto (groups gathering data from different vantage points and working in jigsaw fashion to agree on a report which is published on the Web), Comparing San Diego and Biarritz (aspects of two entities are compared and contrasted), The Planet Earth Expedition: A WebQuest (a California telementors' project), Egyptian Scavenger Hunt (close reading of some on-line resources), Searching for the Aztecs, Searching for Cortes , The Globe Theatre Quest (middle school history projects from Macomb County Public Schools), Elizabethan Scavenger Hunt, Demystifying Chaucer Is Britain's Parliament Significant? and Leadership and the Upcoming British Election by Mary Jane Dority (high school social studies lessons from Weaving Webs of Curricular Change Workshop, June 1996).

Additional information collection activities

Social Studies School Service has created a number of content-specific online activities to help teachers and students make the most of their Internet access at school. Based on their book Teaching Social Studies with the Internet. they have published some sample units including The Underground Railroad, The United Nations and its Related Agencies, The Black Death and Shakespeare's World, The American Revolution: Valley Forge, Women Get to the Front: Female Journalists in Wartime, The Immigrant Experience: Ellis Island Pilgrimage to Mecca: The Hajj, Temple & Funerary Architecture of Ancient Egypt. Ancient Greece and Rome Talk Show , and African Art and Culture .

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