A WebQuest for 9th Grade Biology
Credits Based on a template from The WebQuest Page
Title Simply put, you will be separated into groups of 4 to 5 and build a
Introduction community. This community will take place in the Medieval Era.
The clincher of this particular assignment, is that this will be the only
information that you will be provided. You as the class will be the
designers and executors of your own assignments.
Please be aware, that I will be testing your designs, questioning your
information, and walking around. This assignment will be ongoing
through several weeks, as I will be forcing you to adapt, rethink, and
revise your projects. As the semester goes on, you will learn the
purpose of your project and draw comparisons and conclusions based
off of your projects.
Task In order to understand what it is that makes a medieval
community thrive, you must do some research. What do
these communities need? How do they endure? How do they
adapt? You will need to answer these questions, and come
up with several of your own to begin your community.
Once complete, every member of your group should be
assigned a role. It will be up to you as to what these roles
are. (Hint: What roles are played in today’s society to help
the community thrive and survive?) I will be around to give
you hints, but you are ultimately responsible for your
assignments of role.
I regret to inform you however, that you will be leading
your own project which will be ongoing. I will be stopping to
grade your progress based off of thoroughness of research,
your ability to adapt, and revise your projects.
To start your project, you must begin your research on medieval communities.
Before you research, ask yourselves some fundamental questions on how these
societies survived? Where do they get their funds, their food, their
1. Come up with a series of questions that will help inform you of medieval
society. Try to make predictions about how your society will work.
2. Once you have enough information, you will assign roles to each member of
your group, who will be responsible for one part of your project.
Process 3. Once you have researched what it takes for a medieval community to survive,
and assigned your roles, you will have to ask me to review your work before
being OK’d for the next step.
4. The next step will be given verbally by me once you have been briefed.
Please keep in mind that a great deal of the information gathering and project
building will be your responsibility. The outcome will be your own, and the
grading will be based not off of how well you do, but on how thorough you
are, and how you adapt your projects as the semester progresses.
I encourage you to visit the following websites:
Beginning Developing Accomplished Exemplary Score
Title 1 2 3 4
Introduction Information Information taken from Accurate information Accurate information Accurate information
Gathering only one source and/or taken from a couple of taken from a couple of taken from several
information not sources but not sources in a systematic sources in a
Task accurate. systematically. manner. . systematic manner.
Evaluation Data Data not taken carefully Data taken once in a Data taken twice in a Data taken several
Collection OR not taken in a careful, reliable manner. careful, reliable manner. times in a careful,
Conclusion reliable manner. . reliable manner.
Plan Plan does not show Plan provides clear Plan is neat with clear Plan is neat with clear
measurements clearly measurements and measurements and measurements and
or is otherwise labeling for most labeling for most labeling for all
inadequately labeled. components components.. components.
Modification Little evidence of Some evidence of Clear evidence of Clear evidence of
/Testing troubleshooting, testing troubleshooting, testing troubleshooting, testing troubleshooting,
or refinement. and refinements. and refinements. testing, and
refinements based on
data or scientific
Infrastructur There is no The infrastructure has Infrastructure has a Infrastructure has
e infrastructure, or the an unclear purpose for a clear purpose which can clear and precise
infrastructure has no medieval society. aid in the survival of a purpose which aid in
purpose and cannot be medieval society the survival of a
reasonably used to aid medieval society.
in the survival of a
Credits medieval society.
Now that you have done some research, assigned your roles,
Title and have begun your planning, it will be time for you to get
Introduction your assignments from your teacher. Make sure that you
keep your data organized, and to strive to find other sources
of information to help improve your project.
Evaluation As you continue on your project, you will learn more about
Conclusion what your project is about, and where it is leading.
Please keep in mind, that this project will be mostly student
Thank you to those who did the research on the websites that are provided on the Process
Title page and for displaying that information online for us to read.
Task - http://history.boisestate.edu/westciv/medsoc/
Process - http://library.thinkquest.org/10949/
Evaluation - http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/medieval_masons.htm
Conclusion - http://www.dartfordarchive.org.uk/medieval/industry.shtml
All photos provided by: JC Page
The WebQuest Page , The WebQuest Slideshare Group
A WebQuest for 9-10th Grade (Put Subject Here)
Introduction Designed by:
Learners JC Page
Credits Based on a template from The WebQuest Page
Introduction The idea itself came from JC Page in a methods class, where he was inspired to
create an inquiry lab. Although the idea was formed in 2007, there was no solid
Learners implementation of the idea until Webquest came along.
Standards This is a half lecture, half lab experimental project for students to essentially create
for themselves. This lab is an inquiry lab aimed at teaching cellular biology in a
Process unique way without allowing the students to know what they are learning until it is
It is a bit sneaky, but I feel that the students will be able to draw analogies from what
Evaluation they are doing to cellular biology, which are much harder to forget than a standard
lab and/or lecture.
This particular lab can be expanded or collapsed for any grades between 7th and
Title 10th grade biology. In fact, it is likely that if a teacher is clever enough, this lab can
be used all the way to 12th grade. Therefore, depending on the teacher’s ability to
draw analogies and their ability to lead students to certain pieces of information, one
Learners can make this lab extremely successful.
Standards What the learners need to know prior to this lab is truly dependent on the grade level
you begin with. Assuming the learner has no prior experience with the cell at all,
Process then we will assume 7th grade, and thus they require no experience anyway. The
entire idea is for the students to build upon teamwork, observations, adaptation, and
Resources creativity. Once they begin to form a picture of what their work is analogous to, they
will begin to learn the material.
Contrary to the simple nature of the project, the education has more depth than just
Title cellular biology. They will learn how science works, hypothesis, failure in science, re-
Introduction testing, evolving their ideas, peer criticism, critical thinking, and re-evaluation of their
work in order to improve upon it.
Science Standards Addressed:
Standard 1: Grades 6-12; All benchmarks for 6-8;
Benchmarks 1,2,4,5 and 6 for 9-12.
Resources Standard 3: Grades 6-8; Benchmarks 1-3, 5-6;
Evaluation Grades 9-12; Benchmarks 2-4, 9-10, 18.
Teacher Script Standard 5: Grades 6-8; Benchmarks 2,4, and 5;
Conclusion Grades 9-12; Benchmarks 1, 2, 4, 5, 6 and 7.
As a teacher, you should be familiar with these
standards particularly for this project. The
interweaving standards truly show a high amount of
critical thinking and evaluation skills pertaining to
how science itself works. If you lead them to learn,
re-evaluate, constructively criticize, hypothesize,
and re-test, then the student’s final product should
be an example of how science works.
If you would like to see the process, just scroll up to view the student version, for I
Title disallowed further information on that page.
However, here the process is far more complicated. The students will be in the dark
Learners about what lesson they are learning. I want them to form a medieval community
after doing initial research and observations, assigning roles, making a plan and
Standards putting that plan into action.
Process My goal is to steer them to creating a castle community. This project is ongoing
throughout cell biology. If a student, for example, does not build a castle, but a
Resources quaint little town, I will add in an attack of my own which will force the students to
respond and revise their town to add protection.
Evaluation - Please note, that whatever you do in an event such as this, that it
should be analogous to cellular biology. The example above would be a bacterial or
Teacher Script viral attack on a cell with no protection. This would devastate a living organism, but
Conclusion evolution drives us to adapt to changing conditions, which is exactly my goal for my
students. If they can evolve a cell that includes components such as the nucleus,
Golgi complex, mitochondria, the phospholipid bi-layer, RER, SER, vacuoles,
lysosomes, integral proteins, and various membrane-bound proteins, then their
lesson will be complete and will end in a class discussion. Hopefully the students will
lead themselves in this conversation and draw comparisons and conclusions from
My idea is to use Lego's, so that students can physically build their communities.
These aren’t cheap, but can be purchased in bulk at the Lego store or online.
Variations could include cheaper materials such as popsicle sticks, toothpicks (be
careful since some students get rowdy), Styrofoam cups and plates, plastic utensils
etc. Other variations could include online programs that do the building for you.
I suggest you have the following to do this lab:
•Any good biology book containing evolution, cellular biology, genetics, and cancer
•Enough Lego's and/or supplies for at least 5 groups of 5.
Learners •Imagination and patience
•You may need school permissions for websites involved
Standards •You do not need video/audio material as of yet. It is possible to incorporate video
once the students know what the assignment is all about.
Process •Make sure to include in your lesson a plan to guide students to where they need to
Resources go without giving them the answers and how to test their societies in ways relevant
to cellular biology.
Evaluation •Try to steer them towards evolution, the immune system, genetics etc. This
is a great opener into other topics.
Conclusion - http://www.britainexpress.com/History/Townlife.htm
The human resources needed are minimal. The students will build their projects, and you
will overlook them while they are out of class to see what you can do to encourage
them to improve (via a “viral” attack , AKA a military invasion)
The other primary human resource is the students themselves. They are truly the key to
Credits this entire project.
Title The rubric is truly for the student’s guidance. You will know if the project
is successful during the final conversations about what the students
Introduction have done.
It is successful if:
Standards -They made connections to the scientific method
-They made connections to cellular biology
Process -They used critical thinking skills in order to improve on their
Resources weaknesses as well as have the foresight to avoid complications
-They responded appropriately to failure and/or peer criticism
Evaluation -They have been able to react to stimulus from the teacher in order to
keep their project going.
-They can draw inter-science conclusions using a wide variety of
knowledge (this is more for the 9-12 grades)
Conclusion -They can use the knowledge gleaned from this project to predict the
outcome of more complicated topics.
-They can draw connections between their project and evolution,
genetics, cellular biology, macrobiology, the immune system, and
The wonderful thing about inquiry labs is the small amount of time it takes
Title to set up the project. The drawback to inquiry labs is that you must be at least as
Introduction creative as your students, and you will be a participant in your own plans. The following
will be a step-by-step setup on how to initiate the Kingdom project, but please be
Learners aware, these can be easily changed and altered to create a less creative, student-run
lab, but that also means you must provide more resources and guidance yourself.
Standards **READ THROUGH THE WEBQUEST AS YOU GO THROUGH THE
Process Title Page: The first thing you’ll tell them is that they will be creating a
medieval society. Expect some confusion from the students, and expect the infamous
Resources “why” question from them. It will be at this point you will face the most challenging part;
What NOT to tell your students:
Evaluation - Tell them that this project will become clearer to them as it progresses
rather than why they are doing it.
Teacher Script - Tell them that this is a student-run creative process that will be guided,
Teacher Script: rather than administered by, the teacher.
- Make sure you make no hints of science during this process. Your job is
Page 2 to guide them to the science, not show it to them.
- You will lead them to the introduction section after this part.
Teacher Script: Continued Introduction: The introduction is actually stated succinctly. Just follow
- Expect to hear questions like, “What does this have to do with science,”
Conclusion and ,”What’s the point?,” and many other skeptical questions. They will occur. Instead,
try to direct their energy to their curiosity as to why they are doing it.
*If the students skepticism exceeds their curiosity, mention that they will be
building these societies with Lego’s, and feed them bits of information to get
their curiosity going.
- Lead them to the Task link after this.
Teacher Script: Page 2
Task: The task is simply what they will have to do. Just go over the
Title directions with them and answer the typical questions that will come up. You want to
Introduction guide them to make a village, a town whatever. If they come up with castles, which
is the final product, fine, but try to lead them towards something smaller in scale so
Learners that you may test their adaptability later on in the process.
Standards The Title-Task pages are extremely important. Take as much time as
necessary for the students to understand that they will be doing this on their
Process own and to expect drawbacks. Answer their questions, guide them, and make
sure to leave just enough time left in the class for them to actually follow the
Evaluation Process: The process page contains their resources, a few
examples, and how they should begin their research. Make sure you have
Teacher Script permissions to the websites provided. Quickly cover their steps and let them get to
Conclusion work. Their questions will likely be more private, so walk around the room offering
- There is a hitch on this step: Once students have gathered their
information, they are to come to YOU for guidance, and to receive their next steps. It
is here that they leave the computer and begin the planning process to actually build
their society. You will have to explain that they will be provided with the building
blocks of their society, and that they must follow the process they created while
doing so. Keep an eye on students to help keep them focused on the project!
Lead them to the rubric and conclusion pages after discussing the process,
and before letting them get to work.
Rubric: I do not like the idea of using a specific rubric for this project
until their projects are underway and they are beginning to understand. However,
you can edit it to make it more vague, or use the one provided. It is up to you if you
Credits wish to discuss it. My advice however, is to avoid discussing the infrastructure
section. Teacher Script: Continued
Conclusion: This is the page where they should get the idea of how
Title they must continue their project. Their final questions will likely be revolved around
Introduction their assignment rather than their skepticism. This is where you let them go, and
start the guidance and seeding process.
Standards This page is linked to the Process segment off of the Teacher Page
This project is intended to teach teamwork, peer criticism, the scientific method, how
Title to respond to stimuli, ability to adapt, the ability to troubleshoot, and about core
Introduction knowledge such as cell biology, evolution, genetics, and the immune system.
Learners The interlacing connectivity of this project makes it a strong and worthy effort that
can tie in several areas of Biology without the students realizing what they’ve
Standards learned until it’s too late. By the time they figured out they were actually learning
something, they will already have the knowledge and the analogies needed to keep
Process this information.
Resources Furthermore, the number of scientific standards this project encompasses truly
shows the versatility and value of a project such as this. If done correctly, your
Evaluation students should be able to draw several conclusions, and even hypothesize about
future subjects in biology.
Conclusion Good luck!
The only sources used were the websites, to which I extend my thanks for publicly putting
Title up their research and efforts for us to share.
Learners - http://www.britainexpress.com/History/Townlife.htm
Standards - http://www.trytel.com/~tristan/towns/glossary.html
Process - http://www.britainexpress.com/History/Townlife.htm
Resources - http://www.medieval-life.net/life_main.htm
Evaluation - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Town_hall_in_Szyd%C5%82owiec
Teacher Script The WebQuest Page and The WebQuest Slideshare Group
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