Teaching with the Web:
A Collection of Online Treasure Hunts and Webquests
Teacherís Guide to Mathematics in the Games We Play
This webquest may be implemented in the 1st Year Math classroom OR in the 2nd Year Math classroom. It is designed for integrating the various lessons in either curriculum (that is, whether 1st Year or 2nd Year).
The lessons to be integrated can be all of the lessons from the start of the school year until the time when the webquest is implemented. Thus, if the webquest is implemented at the beginning of the third grading period, it will help students integrate and apply lessons taken up during the first and second grading periods. In the 1st year curriculum, these are lessons on measurement, the real number system, algebraic expressions, and possibly first-degree equations and inequalities in one variable. In the 2nd year curriculum, the lessons covered would be on systems of linear equations and inequalities, quadratic equations, rational algebraic expressions, and variation.
Students can also identify in the sport assigned to them mathematical concepts taken up in the elementary grades.
In general, the webquest helps students appreciate the real life applications of mathematics, especially in sports. Thus it should develop a positive attitude to learning mathematics.
Before starting on the webquest:
1. Make sure that you are thoroughly familiar with all of the components of the webquest.
2. Prepare a work plan, in which you indicate the inclusive dates for the various steps in the webquest process. The time allotment for each step in the webquest process is indicated in the Process section. But you need to identify the actual dates for every step. Your schedule should be such that the webquest is completed in four consecutive weeks, not spread out over a long period. This is to ensure a focused interest in the project.
3. Draw up a list of games or sports to assign to your students. There should be one game or sport per group. You may of course assign the same game or sport to more than one group.
4. Prepare the materials you will need to distribute to students during the orientation session, such as copies of the webquest (print the printer-friendly version of the webquest, which is marked with a printer icon on the webquest index page of the sourcebook).
5. Coordinate with the Center Manager the use of the computer center (this is one reason why a work plan is needed) and let him/her know of any technical assistance you might need (especially for Steps 2Ė3 and possible Step 5).
For every step in the webquest, here are the things that you need to do:
Orient your class to the webquest. It is recommended that you give a print copy of the webquest to each group. You can also do the orientation in the computer center, where groups can read the electronic or soft copy of the webquest on a computer assigned to them.
Carefully go over the Task and Evaluation sections of the webquest with your students. And then go over the Process. Encourage students to ask clarificatory questions and be ready to provide answers.
Group your students into groups of four-five members each, using the grouping method you decided on prior to starting the webquest. Make sure that there is a mix of abilities in each group.
Give the groups time to decide on the distribution of roles among them. Make sure that the assignment of roles is by consensus among the group members. No one member should decide which roles the other members will play, to ensure that all members will be motivated to participate in the activity.
And then assign each group a sport or game to study. You can do this by having group representatives draw lots on which are written the games or sports you listed beforehand.
Schedule a class session at the computer center for your students to go over the websites listed in the Resources section. This can be on a Saturday (a half-day per section will do perhaps) so that there will be enough time to read the resources. Remind the students to complete their background research within one week. They can continue the online research in Internet cafes after school hours.
Monitor the studentsí work in this step by asking for mini-reports during regular class sessions (take no more than 10 minutes for this). Make yourself available for consultations, should the students need this.
Remind students to complete the work within the time allotted (2 weeks).
Remind students to start work on their reports as soon as they have the data they need.
Groups should meet to critique the parts of the report each member wrote and to put the whole report together. You might wish to facilitate this by setting a special class session on a Saturday during which all groups will meet, with you present to monitor the group discussions. This meeting can be at the computer center so that groups can also encode their reports. You and the Center Manager should provide technical assistance as needed.
Remind students to refer to the scoring checklist in the Evaluation section of the webquest for guidance on how to prepare their report.
Collect the group reports at the end of the special session. Do not forget to congratulate your students for completing the webquest and make a short (10 minutes) synthesis of the lessons learned.
In the next class meeting, distribute copies of the self-assessment and peer evaluation forms for students to fill in. This is individual work. Each student should therefore have a copy of the forms. An alternative is to write out each form on a piece of manila paper and post these in the classroom for students to copy. The students can simply write their answers to the forms on a piece of paper.
After the webquest (when all group outputs and accomplished student self-assessment and peer evaluation forms have been submitted):
1. Evaluate the group outputs using the scoring checklist, assign points to the self-assessment and peer evaluation, and compute each studentís final grade or score for the webquest.
2. Let everyone know his/her score for the project.
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