CALL LESSON for a WebQuest
Based on the WebQuest model by Bernie Dodge and adapted by Christine Bauer-Ramazani
COVER PAGE / Slide 1
Title of the Lesson
A WebQuest for xth Grade (Put Subject Here)
Put Your Name
Put Your E-mail Address Here
Put the course (GSL520: Computer-Assisted Language Learning) and Saint Michael's College here.
Put some interesting graphic representing the content here.
Add navigation (action) buttons in the right-hand corner (next slide, home, previous slide) for viewer control.
Good sample WebQuests for ESL:
Concepts of Culture: A WebQuest for Fourth Grade Social Studies, by Aimee Perrino, Rebecca Baker, Elizabeth (Beth Ann) Cope
What's New at Our Zoo? A Science WebQuest for 5th/6th Grade Intermediate English Language Learners, by Sheryl Dunn, Susanna Mason, and Jen Harvey
Vermont Housing for International Students--A WebQuest for Intermediate Level International Students at the college level, by Rattiya (Jane) Panichkul and Hung-che (Ben) Chen.
INTRODUCTION (slide 2)
This document should be written with the student as the intended audience. Write a short paragraph here to introduce the activity or lesson to the students, i.e. give some background information. If there is a role or scenario involved (e.g., "You are a detective trying to identify the mysterious poet."), then here is where you'll set the stage. If there's no motivational intro like that, use this section to provide a short advance organizer or overview. Remember that the purpose of this section is to both prepare and hook the reader. Include some warm-up activities.
It is also in this section that you'll communicate the Big Question (Essential Question, Guiding Question) that the whole WebQuest is centered around.
If your WebQuest is about a place, include some general information, a picture, and/or audio files.
If it is about a person, describe something about the person that gives general background to the students.
If you are creating a scenario with opposing points of view, describe the views briefly.
QUEST/TASK (slide 3)
Describe crisply and clearly what the end result of the learners' activities will be. The task could be a:
- problem or mystery to be solved;
- position to be formulated and defended;
- product to be designed;
- complexity to be analyzed;
- personal insight to be articulated;
- summary to be created;
- persuasive message or journalistic account to be crafted;
- a creative work, or
- anything that requires the learners to process and transform the information they've gathered.
See the WebQuest Taskonomy: A Taxonomy of Tasks for more explanations of these tasks and examples.
If the final product involves using some tool (e.g. a word processor, e-mail, PowerPoint, the Web, video), mention it here. Don't list the steps that students will go through to get to the end point. That belongs in the Process section.
To accomplish the task, what steps should the learners go through?
- Form teams of 3 or more students...
- Choose a role to play....
- ... and so on.
Think about and specify--What is the task that the student(s) must undertake? Why is the job necessary? What are the circumstances surrounding the task or the question that may cause conflict? What led up to this circumstance? Is there more than one way of looking at this. Can you see conflicting roles for people--such as environmentalist and industrialist?
You should briefly outline for student(s) what they are expected to learn. For example: Despite the known risks of space flight should the elderly be encouraged to make space shuttle flights for the sake of gaining potentially beneficial medical knowledge?
Specify the Standards/Objectives addressed in this WebQuest. Create a hyperlink to the specific standards for your state. (For objectives, create a link to the page/slide where they are listed.)
1. Roles (slide 4): This is the heart of the WebQuest! A good WebQuest generates some tension or conflict that must be resolved so you should try to develop three or more roles. Remember that you want this to be a collaborative activity for students. Briefly outline for student(s) what they are expected to do. Learners will access the on-line resources that you've identified as they go through the Quest/Task. Explain that students who have similar roles may work together to compare ideas based on the factual information they have collected, or that students may continue to pursue their role individually until the conflict generated by the original guiding question(s) forces them to resolve the issue with the entire group.
- Be sure that they understand that their role may place them in conflict with another person's role. How should they resolve this conflict?
- What overall idea should they keep in mind that will allow them to compromise? Is there a greater good?
2. Procedure (slides 5 - 6)
In this part, students will be asked to accomplish what was stated in the objectives. This must be done through carefully scaffolded activities, which may be handouts, exercises, links, etc.
Organization: Describe briefly how the lesson is organized. Does it involve more than one class? Is it all taught in one period per day, or is it part of several periods? How many days or weeks will it take? Is it single disciplinary, interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary or what?
Activities: Describe the activities for each part of the process (i.e. each day), giving clear instructions and links to resources, worksheets/handouts, etc. If students are divided into groups, provide guidelines on how you might do that.
If there are misconceptions or stumbling blocks that you anticipate, describe them here and suggest ways to get around them.
Variations: If you can think of ways to vary the way the lesson might be carried out in different situations (lab vs. in-class, for example), describe them here.
Describe what steps/activities need to be carried out before the project can begin. Give clear instructions. If you have identified or prepared guide documents on the Web that cover specific skills needed for this lesson (e.g. how to brainstorm, how to prepare to interview an expert), link them to this section.
Group work: Once the students have understood their roles and investigated the background material necessary to make informed decisions, then it is time for them to come together as a group and to discuss the issue(s). Group work should result in a consensus document or presentation.
Give the students directions on this group work.
Roles: Be sure that they understand that their role may place them in conflict with another person's role.
How should they resolve this conflict? What overall idea should they keep in mind that will allow them to compromise?
Is there a greater good?
TEACHERS (slides 7- )
1. The Learners - slide 7
||This is the page to be used for teachers who would like to use your WebQuest with their own class. Describe what the lesson is about.|
||Please write a paragraph for a current or prospective group of students. Include a description of the class. Specify age/grade (middle, elementary, early childhood, etc.), language proficiency level, native language background, class size, content area (mathematics, language arts, etc), class needs or goals, previous computer work, recent class work|
(step by step) - slide 8
Describe what preparations/steps/activities need to be carried out before the project can begin. Give clear instructions.
What skills does a teacher need in order to pull this lesson off? Is it easy enough for a novice teacher? Does it require some experience with directing debates or role plays, for example?
What skills or information do the learners need to have before they can complete the task? Examples include exchanging email addresses of the group members, familiarity with Word (or PowerPoint), the peer review process, effective group work, etc.
If you have identified or prepared guide documents on the Web that cover specific skills needed for this lesson (e.g. how to brainstorm, how to prepare to interview an expert), link them to this section. When preparing activities, consider the different learning styles of your students; see Learning Styles and Learning Style Inventory or The VARK Inventory.
3. Standards and Objectives
Specify the standards and objectives--content, linguistic, computer literacy, social/cultural, and academic--to be met by this WebQuest and link them also on the Task page for the Students. List by subject area (WebQuests should be interdisciplinary projects). Please detail the expected outcome for each objective.
NOTE: For K-12 teachers in the U.S., these should be tied to the standards set for each state (please refer to K-12 Links; Vermont K-12 teachers refer to the ESL standards developed by the WIDA Consortium; find your grade level and specify the standard referenced).
The expected outcome must be performance/achievement-based and measurable through an assessment procedure (e.g. a test/quiz, rubric, etc.--see Evaluation below). Be as specific as possible. It is recommended to begin objectives with "By the end of the lesson/unit, students will be able to ..." and follow with an action verb that expresses the expected performance/achievement. Think of what the students will demonstrate/be able to accomplish after completion of the lesson. Then answer the question, "How will the students demonstrate that they have accomplished this objective?" Each objective should have several bullets that specify the expected, measurable outcome. Example: "By the end of the WebQuest, the learners will be able to … (+ specific behavior) by completing the XYZ worksheet with 80% accuracy." Or, if you prefer to use a rubric, e.g. for assessing writing, speaking, research, or even technology skills, you can specify which aspects you will use to evaluate the students’ proficiency/success. Whatever you state in the objective(s) will need to be included in handout/worksheet form (= "scaffolding exercises), research, discussion, etc. AND measured in the evaluation segment (through rubrics, for example). I would strongly advise you to look at some samples of objectives done for previous WebQuests, e.g. What's New at our Zoo, Discovering Vermont, and Vermont Housing for International Students.
Also, please look over "The 4 P's of Lesson Planning," with particular focus on the objectives in Preparing a Lesson and the list of Action Verbs for Learning Objectives.
4. Materials/Resources (slide 11)
Please list what's needed to implement this lesson. Pay particular attention to scaffolding tasks that allow students to accomplish each of the objectives you stated. These could include links to electronic files that address specific skills, such as information on how to brainstorm, how to prepare .... Some of the possibilities include
- specific hardware (what kind? How many?--e.g. computers, color printer or other peripherals--scanner, digital camera, web cam, etc.)
- specific software (What kind? How many copies?)
- e-mail accounts
- handouts/worksheets (electronic files) with exercises, guiding questions, puzzles/quizzes, etc.; see
- web sites
- Video or audio materials
- specific reference material (in the classroom or school library)
- classroom/Online Encyclopedias and/or Dictionaries (see the Online Dictionary/Encyclopedia section in Christine's Links to Useful TESL/CALL Web Sites)
- library resources.
Note: If the lesson makes extensive use of specific websites, it would be appropriate to list, describe, and link them here. It would also be helpful to link the names of books suggested to Amazon or other online sources.
Describe also the human resources needed. how many teachers are needed to implement the lesson. Is one enough? Do you need to coordinate with a teacher at another school? With a partner in industry or a museum or other entity? Is a field trip designed in as part of the lesson?
Outcome: Provide options for how students may present their information to the group. Here are some ideas:
Flowcharts Brochure/newsletter Multimedia Presentations Written piece--summary, essay, paper Debates Concept Maps/Venn Diagrams Web Site/Page Summary Tables
of students' learning (slide 12)
assess all of the components of your students' learning specified in the objectives. Examples of rubrics to choose from can be found here:
Provide students with a clear understanding of the grading criteria which will be used to evaluate their learning as well as their performance. Include an evaluation of each of the objectives you stated.
Provide links to online rubrics which will allow students to know upfront what grading criteria will be used. Make sure you
Creating a Rubric for a Given Task and
Scoring Rubrics for Your Classroom
For various types of assessment, see Teaching Tips--Assessment.
OR Create an online rubric with RubiStar or TeAchnology's Rubric Makers.
Include a phrase such as, "Please click here to review the criteria on which your individual grade will be based."
"You will also receive a collaborative grade. Pleaseclick here to review the criteria which will determine you collaborative grade."
Explain how the grades will be counted or averaged.
CONCLUSION (slide 13)
Put a couple of sentences here that summarize what they will have accomplished or learned by completing this activity or lesson. You might also include some rhetorical questions or additional links to encourage them to extend their thinking into other content beyond this lesson.
Explain to students how the conclusion will offer the opportunity to engage in further analysis. For example:
Ask students how their roles could have been interpreted in a different light?
Ask students if they had interpreted their roles differently, how might the outcome have changed?
Ask students if they were flexible enough to compromise with the group and attain resolution, or did they yield to group pressures?
Ask students what new questions did the issue(s) generate? Why would these new questions be important in answering the original question(s)?
Include follow-up activities, such as homework assignments (in-class, out-of-class, individual, collaborative)
Discuss any problems technical, learner, language, group) that could be anticipated and provide possible solutions. Please see "The 4 P's of Lesson Planning, Potential Problems and Pitfalls.
Last updated on October 03, 2012