What is webquest? What does it do?
Webquest is an inquiry-oriented lesson model in which most or all the information that learners deal with are from the web. This can be used for integrating information technology with lesson activities.
Questgarden is a online place for teachers to designing their task-based webquests under the direction of lots of example templates and guidelines out there. Additionally, the webquest can be built together by several co-authorr or search for the specific ones and adapt them into corresponding teaching context.
Why is this particular tool or technology relevant to language learning? What approaches to language learning or research underpin the use of this technology?
Webquest definitely provides a new way of the language teaching. First, let's take a look at the composition of webquest.
Composition of Webquest:
The layout of the webquest is clear and teachers or students can design and accomplish this task step by step. The aim of webquest is to encourage students to work together to learn the language while they are searching for the information and solving the task. The materials usually are authentic and attractive than the coursebook. According to thses, teachers set the goal and can scafford students during their learning.
How might you use it to forster language learning in class/outside class?
To do the webquest, students are required to explore information and cope with the task apart from English learning. This kind of creative activity compared to the traditional methods can effectively stimulates learner's intrinsic autonomy. Especially when it comes to the teamwork, students probably get more actively involved in the process with mutual interations. I prefer to use this within the class targeting on scaffroding them properly while they are dealing with this. Besides, teacher can start with introducing this elaboratively and end with concluding this activity breifly in class.
Here is the example for a webquest: Dinosaurs Before Dark
The advabtages of webquest:
- The aim of the task is clear
- The format is explicit and can help learners think and research by themselves
- Lots of information are availvable on the web
- Promote learners motivation and autonomy with choosing the stimulating topic, doing reaearch indepently or within a team.
- The evaluation criterion is not clear
- The process of planning and designing a suitable webquest is very time-consuming with loads of preparation works even adapting an existing webquest.
- Age limit