It's been almost a year since Terry Deniston, one of the coolest educators I will ever know, told our class how great WebQuests were.
I tried them once in my 450 High School practicum, but with little success. Many of my links were a little lame, and some of the essays I sent them too were a little more advanced than what they were prepaired for.
Friday, I finally understood what Terry was trying to tell us.
My students are starting on Night by Elie Weisel. Surprisingly, many of them don't know about the holocaust (world history is next year). So I put together a WebQuest, or page of previewed links, so that students can spend one quick period on research rather than sifting through the credible and uncredible information on Google.
Going in on Friday morning I was contemplating how I was going to keep my eyes on the screens of the whole class when half my desks face the other half. I was sure partners would have trouble staying on task.
Instead, I hardly did any classroom management. In what is normally my craziest class, the students who normally do nothing were finishing their worksheet before some of my brightest students.
I knew technology increased student interest and introduced relevancy. But I hadn't truely seen it in action until this week. It was amazing. I wish I had a video camera.