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Using WebQuests in the Social Studies Classroom

Using WebQuests in the Social Studies Classroom
A Culturally Responsive Approach

June 2008 | 152 pages | Corwin

"Founded on a well-established educational rationale, this book takes the critical and challenging step of helping teachers integrate culturally responsive education into their own practice. By using real student stories, the authors spin an engaging narrative that both informs and entertains."
—Tom March, Codeveloper

Foster student inquiry and higher-level thinking with this powerful Web-based model!

Today's educators face the challenges of making content engaging and relevant for students from diverse backgrounds and incorporating technology in the classroom. Designed to optimize content learning and promote greater intercultural understanding, Using WebQuests in the Social Studies Classroom shows how educators can make social studies personal and real while nurturing globally minded students.

This unique guide presents practical strategies for using WebQuests: inquiry-oriented, collaborative student activities that use Web-based information for solving problems through focused analysis, synthesis, and evaluation. Aligned with the National Council for Social Studies (NCSS) standards, the American Historical Association criteria for Excellent Classroom Teaching, and the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) standards, this comprehensive resource includes:

  • Real stories portraying culturally diverse classrooms
  • Comprehensive examples of culturally responsive WebQuests
  • Guidelines, tips, and step-by-step instructions for developing WebQuests

Reflective exercises throughout make this guide an ideal professional development resource for teachers interested in learning more about culturally responsive social studies and technologically enhanced instruction.

Why This Book?

Real Voices... Typical Classroom Challenges

Practical, Usable Curriculum Content


About the Authors
1. The Challenge of Culturally Responsive Teaching
Meet Harrison Songolo

The Need for a Culturally Responsive Context

The Larger Narrative

Powerful Social Studies... Powerful Citizens

Imaginative Entry

The Quest for Connections

2. The Technologically Competent Social Studies Teacher
The NETS Project

Essential Conditions for Successful Technology Integration

Technology Resources

Special Considerations for Classroom Technology

Web Site Accessibility

Assistive Technology

Legal Implications

Online Technology Resources

3. The WebQuest Model
Background and History

Why Use the WebQuest Model?

Example WebQuest No. 1: Exploring Socio-Economic Conditions

One Zambia, One Nation?

4. Designing WebQuests
Core Components of a WebQuest





Other Components of the Model

Design Process

Selecting a Primary Design Tool


Assessing WebQuests

Online Resources

5. Getting Started: Learners, Topics, and Design Patterns
Getting Started

Anita’s Classroom

Meet Happy-Hardy Guinguing

Brainstorming WebQuest Ideas

General Social Studies

Online Resources: Social Studies Topics

Culturally Responsive Topics

Online Resources: Cultural Sensitivity

Anita’s Challenge: Teaching World Religions

Design Patterns

Example WebQuest No. 2: World Religions and Conflicts

Religious Conflict: Is an End in Sight?

6. Authentic and Engaging Tasks
Meet Juan Pablo Escoriza

Posing Authentic Problems to Challenge Thinking Skills

Brainstorming WebQuest Tasks

Exercises: Tasks From Example WebQuests in Previous Chapters

Chart of Possible Tasks

Online Resources

Example WebQuest No. 3: Immigration: Past, Present, and Future

Lights, Camera, Action! An Immigration Perspective

7. Evaluation Rubrics
Meet Vladimir Emilov Evtimov

Using Rubrics

Online Tools

How Many Rubrics?

Rubric Dimensions and Scale

Exercises: Evaluation Rubrics From Example WebQuests

Online Resources

Example WebQuest No. 4: Effective Use of Maps and Geographic Tools

Calling All Cartographers!

8. The WebQuest Process: How, What, and When
Meet Haseena Niazi

Teams and Roles

Exercises: Teams and Roles From Example WebQuests

Choosing Appropriate Resources

Internet Resources

Search Engines

Selecting Web Sites

Social Studies Links

Accessibility Issues

Copyright, Fair Use, and Citation of Sources

Other Resources

Exercises: Resources From Example WebQuests

Online Resources

Example WebQuest No. 5: Voting Rights and Responsibilities

Let Our Voices Be Heard!

9. Finalizing Your WebQuest Design
Meet Poroma Kanya

WebQuest Introductions

WebQuest Conclusions

Using Images and Other Tools

Teacher Page and Credits

Assessing Your WebQuest

Tom March’s Seven Points for a Great WebQuest

10. The Challenge Ahead: A Quest for Peace
Humanistic Education

Choices for the 21st-Century Education Program

A Workable Peace

Freedom Writers

A Final Quest

Keeping the Quest Alive

Other Resources
A. Ten Thematic Strands in Social Studies

B. National Education Technology Standards for Students

C. Sites for Selecting Specialized Resources

D. Standards Associated With Example WebQuests

Suggested Readings: Cultural Responsiveness in the Classroom

"Founded on a well-established educational rationale, this book takes the critical and challenging step of helping teachers integrate culturally responsive education into their own practice. By using real student stories, the authors spin an engaging narrative that informs and entertains."

Tom March, Codeveloper

"Shows teachers how to create quality WebQuests using constructivist principles while also encouraging teacher reflection. The book has inspired me in my efforts to make my teaching responsive to students’ needs and the real-world requirements of our education system."

Greg Oppel, Social Studies Teacher
Edmond Memorial High School, OK

"Offers endless resources for the novice or experienced teacher. In a culturally diverse classroom, WebQuests provide students with an opportunity to showcase their cultures and take pride in their learning. While the text is geared to the social studies teacher, the steps of the WebQuest are explained so that any teacher in any discipline may develop and utilize this resource in their curriculum."

Luis M. Oliveira, Spanish Teacher
Middletown High School, RI

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ISBN: 9781412959513

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