Saturday 21 January 2012

Webquest: Festivals and Holidays

Image by OLD SKOOL Cora
A few days ago I did an activity with my students which has been a little disregarded lately - the webquest.

I remember at the dawn of using computers for learning, webquests were rather popular possibly because other web activities had not been "invented" yet. Webquests meant students could get access to the computers and have a jolly time online, especially because computers were rare in their homes.

A webquest is a creative and dynamic activity requiring some web search skills. Students usually like webquests because they get a chance to spend a lesson in the computer room (if it is not homework) and do what most of them like - browse the web.

My 16 year old students had just studied the topic of festivals and traditions and what seemed to me a logical follow-up was their independent work on summing up the basic info about the most popular holidays. We did the activity in the computer lab and the hardest part was that the students did not have any links provided but had to find the information relying only on their own search skills.
The chart they had to fill in asked for the date and place of the original holiday, traditional food, drinks and activities.

Take a look at one of the charts completed by the student.

Here is the handout. You may print or download it. If you feel like removing some of the festivals I have included in the chart or add your own, go ahead.

All in all, it was a productive and win-win classroom activity.


Tyson Seburn said...

Webquests are still popular, particularly among our settlement-focussed classrooms, who have very tempered access to computers or computer labs. I think you're right in that they stem from a Web 1.0 time period, which those particular students largely still feel familiar. That doesn't discount their validity (or fun). As a result, there's almost always still a session at our conference on how to do them.

Simon Thomas said...

Thanks for sharing this, Baiba!

I hope you don't mind, but I've added a link to this post (and your blog generally) on the ELT News Feed section of my site, here. Let me know if you would prefer it wasn't on there and I'll take it off!

Best wishes,
All best wishes


Baiba said...

Tyson, thanks for sharing your Canadian experience. It would be useful to learn more about the different uses of webquests in your parts.

Baiba said...

Simon, sure I don't mind and I am happy to know you consider my post interesting to your readers. Thanks!