Teacher Information Page

 

Introduction | Learners | Standards | Process | Resources | Evaluation | Conclusions

 

Introduction

This lesson was developed as part of the Warrensburg, Missouri School District's WebQuest Academy project, a State funded Competitive Technology Grant.

In this WebQuest, eighth grade students will take on the responsibility of preparing for a job interview as a Jefferson City Capitol Tour Guide. Students will be required to do the following:

This WebQuest is designed to be used in conjunction with the field trip to Jefferson City. It is designed to increase the students knowledge about the places that will be visited on the field trip. This is an annual field trip for th Discovery Team.

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 Learners

This lesson is anchored in eighth grade American history and could involve language arts and reading/writing classes as students prepare their brochures. Since this is a team field trip to Jefferson City, out entire time incorporates Missouri history into their classes either before or after the field trip.

This WebQuest could easily be adapted for use in other grades that focus on Missouri history.

In order for students to participate in this WebQuest, they should be familiar with using the Internet (specifically using the "back" button to go back to the previous page) and should also be familiar with using more than one program at a time (hiding the Internet while using AppleWorks for example). No previous knowledge of Missouri history is necessary.

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Curriculum Standards

As a result of this WebQuest, students will meet the following Missouri Show-Me Standards:

Performance Standards Addressed

Content Standards Addressed:

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Process

The Discovery Team takes an annual field trip to Jefferson City each spring. We tour the Capitol, the Governor's Mansion, the Supreme Court, and then ride the Amtrak train home. This is a very popular tour so you must begin planning early. Probably the most difficult part of this trip is making arrangements with Amtrak as they are not especially "school" friendly. Because we have to pay for the train tickets withing two weeks of booking the trip, the students must pay in December or January for the trip. This is the official beginning of the trip to Jefferson City.

I would introduce the WebQuest about three -four weeks prior to the trip. I would first let the students know the website address and what will be expected of them in the WebQuest. I like for them to have a chance to look at it on their own first. It makes it very easy to do this as my classroom computer is hooked up to my tv so the students can view the WebQuest as I discuss it.

On the first day in the computer lab, we do the scavenger hunt. It takes one 90-minute class to complete. I printed the scavenger hunt page from the WebQuest and made a copy for each student so they could write their answer on it. Some students had to finish as homework either at home or by coming in before or after school to work on my classroom computer. Because I had several students in each class who did not have Internet -access at home, I allowed the class one additional class day to complete it. I then graded the scavenger hunt in class and the students were told to study for a quiz over the scavenger hunt for the next class period.

On my second day in the computer lab, we began by taking the quiz I had prepared at the funbrain.com web site. When you use this link, click on "quiz lab" to begin. You can click on "quiz lab tour" to learn about what this site has to offer. You will be required to register in order to use this site. It is very easy to use!!!! Please register your own class and add my quiz to your collection if you would like to use it. Otherwise, your student's scores will be emailed directly to me and I won't know who they are! Other teachers on my team use this site so my students are familiar with how to use it.

When students were finished with the quiz they began the brochure process. I printed a copy of the brochure directions so that each student had a hard copy at their computer in case of emergency. I know I prefer a hard copy as opposed to relying on reading the computer screen. In order to begin their brochure, the students first had to know their groups and know who was doing what. (Students signed up for their field trip groups in math class. I made a copy of their groups and numbers 1-2 on the list did the first brochure, numbers 3-4 did the second brochure, etc. No argueing, etc.)

Most students were able to complete the brochure during class. I did open the computer lab before and after school two days to allow students to finish before our trip. (We still had one week before the trip.) We printed their brochures and students were allowed to take them on the trip with them so that they could refer back to them during their field trip. It seemed to make the trip much more meaningful.

My students also wrote letters to their elected officials in Missouri about a law they would like to see created or repealed. Although it was not a part of this webquest, it is a crucial component to really come full circle. Not only do the students have the opportunity to learn facts and details about Jefferson City, they are able to go see it for themselves, and also be able to put a face with the name on their letter while knowing where it will be read and maybe even debated.

If I can help with any other information, please email me with questions or comments. My email address can be found on the title page.

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Resources Needed

In order to implement this lesson you will need:

As for human resources, one teacher can easily handle the scavenger hunt day. However, the more computer literate adults you can gather, the better it is on brochure day.

As for the actual field trip itself, we put one adult in charge of a group of ten students. And a word of advise on the train ride, groups must sit together with their adult! And if the students want to go to the snack car for food, go one group at a time alternating front and back. We learned this the hard way on our first trip!!!!

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Evaluation

Any time my students do a project in my class it is worth 100 points----therefore, you will notice the scavenger hunt, quiz, brochure, and post-trip quiz total 100 points. I decided this way a process for the students to work through, so the entire webquest was the project.

Refering back to the standards, I have identified how each standard was met :

1. Conduct research to answer questions and evaluate information and ideas (1.2)----scavenger hunt

2. Use technological tools and other resources to locate, select and organize information (1.4)---scavenger hunt and brochure

3. Apply communication skills to the job search and to the workplace (2.6)---the WebQuest process is the job search skills and post-trip interview

4. Develop, monitor and revise plans o action to meet deadlines and accomplish goals (4.5)---monitor progress on scavenger hunt and brochure

5. Continuity and change in the history of Missouri (SS.1)--scavenger hunt research, field trip

6. Principles and processes of governance systems (SS.3)---scavenger hunt, brochure, and field trip

7. Speaking and writing standard English (CA-1)---scavenger hunt and brochure

8. Writing formally and informally (CA-4)---scavenger hunt and brochure

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Conclusion

The importance of government can never be overlooked. As the teacher of eighth grade students, I believe it is my job to help them understand government does not happen in some far off, remote place that they can never understand or be a part of. This webquest and field trip were designed with this in mind.

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