Sunday, March 13, 2011


Stephanie Williams

I think most people reading this know that I am also working on my Masters right now. It just so happens that my Didáctica para Heritage Learners class is doing a webquest on Tuesday so when I asked Stephanie what exactly the Internet-based projects were and she replied webquests I sat down to listen :)

So a bit more about her (per the biodata)

Stephanie Williams graduated in Modern Languages at Portsmouth University in the United Kingdom. She has over 15 years’ experience in English teaching, both in the UK and in Spain. She is also a teacher trainer and is currently working in the languages department of Vicens Vives.
The title of her presentation is "Language Learning with Internet-based Projects"

Which per the abstract should be about, "why and how to use Internet-based Projects in the language learning class. We will see how varied Internet resources on topics of interest to students can motivate them to carry through an assigned class project, and help improve their language skills and build their confidence, self-esteem and learner autonomy in the process."

First she went over the basics, what an internet based project is (and the different types, but since this was mainly webquests I'll skip that part), how to search the internet, why to include the internet, what you need to do it, examples, how to assess a webquest, and the benefits of a webquest.

To summarize her presentation:

  • A WEBQUEST is based online (aka uses stduents enthusiasm for the internet to complete a task)
  • It is student led (students follow teacher's written directions but it is still mainly led by students). Basically: learner autonomy!
  • They need to figure out what information is missing and how to find it and make it make sense. Students use critical thinking!
  • It encouraged cooperative learning.

You need a:
  • feasible topic
  • time limit (keep in mind pug ins and what not take longer to load)
  • appropriate resources (static pages that the student will always find)
  • clear objective (students need to know EXACTLY what they are doing)
Then we all did a Webquest about Webquests! (created by an Aztec btws!) We all went through and completed our own webquest (in a group) with the objective of choosing the "best" one.

Sounds great? But you have a problem? No internet in the classroom? That DOES sound like an issue! You can try WebWhacker 5.0 it essentially downloads the sites so you can browse offline! I haven't tried it but you may want to try it out.

This is older, but if you like her style and want to know a bit more about technology I found this old slideshare that seems to be by her.

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