Thursday, November 11, 2010

Learning through Webquests- a Different "spin" on History & Science Learning

I recently had been going through my many email newsletters I subscribe to and found out about this site  (Webquest.Org ) for researching Webquests. I was not exactly real familiar with Webquests and just how they might fit into our home learning.  Afterall, we already have a program we have been working through and have been satisfied for the most part with it so I wasn't entirely sure something like a Webquest would really be helpful to us until this past week my son had gotten a new PS3 game in and was all excited and explaining to me and showing me things about the game he liked.
I found his explanations really interesting because as he told me how he enjoyed the game and it explained what it had to offer in the areas of history and science and the very fact that it was so interactive and full of adventure he just loved it.
Three words stuck out at me as I listened to him; Science, History and Interactive.  I remembered the Adaptive Learning Curriculum that we had purchased and has not been used yet because we had been working on our Introduction to Neurology Unit and that got me thinking even more... "interactive".... so once I learned more about what Webquests actually are  ( link provided) and how they are used I feel like I may have tapped into yet another one of my son's strengths. ~ he loves using the computer for learning and I think this may just really ignite further in-depth learning for him.
In our history program we are working this portion of our year on Ancient Civilizations and will be starting a unit on Ancient Crete and then Ancient Greece.  I decided to use our chapters on these as a springboard for a possible Webquest he could attempt to do. 
I found this Webquest, appropriately titled "Greece" and plan on reading through this and see if it might be something for us to try out. It sounds really neat.  In the introduction it is explained that you are a tour guide for a group of sixth graders who are creating a model for Ancient Greece and your job is to be the tour guide and escort the people around through sightseeing tours and provide information in specific "points of interest".
The webquest is actually set up to be used in a classroom setting but we can tweak things so that he can either choose one particular area to learn about OR if he chooses he can learn about each and do the activities for each.
I am still browsing and found a few more that I have to share. I plan to look through all of these and he can choose which one he might like to do;

Ancient Greece Webquest: ( your a film maker and your boss has assigned you to reconstruct a documentary on Ancient Greece)
The Olympic Games of Ancient Greece ( task is to find out as many interesting facts and information about the Olympic Games)
Ancient Greece ( creating a time capsule for Ancient Greece)
Get Civilized! ( another webquest where your creating a time capsule, this one is for younger elementary aged learners, approx. grade 3)- I really like the pictures in this one and you could use this along with possibly a lapbook also if you so choose. here is a lapbook on Greece. There are others also you can find by using Google.
Webquest of Ancient Greece ( travel back in time to Ancient Greece and come back to report on various aspects of the culture) ages 12-14 as mentioned.

Along with doing the Webquest or various Webquests, we will be reading "Greek Myths" by D'Aulaires and also "The Odyssey" by Homer.  I also thought that it might be a great time to maybe start the Percy Jackson series as well, we shall see.

Our younger son heard about these Webquests also and as I explained to the boys what these were they both now are interested in doing something like this. I think it just kind of adds a bit different "spin" on things. So I will be looking in their history and science to see what other Webquests we will plan to do also.


Stephanie said...

We are in the midst of Ancient Greece ourselves and I love the idea of a webquest. I'll have to take a closer look at those you listed. BTW, Percy Jackson was a great way to get my son interested. He learned a lot about the gods by reading those books.

Learners at Home said...

Wonderful Stephanie and great timing too! lol I am glad to hear that it encourages me to pick up the series and start it. :) He love Greek Mythology so I think it will be great. I have found many other Webquests for Ancient Civilizations also, do you think they would be helpful if I post and share them?

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