Teachers in Action Professional Development through Inquiry By Gerald McCarthy Broad Research Question: Will Inquiry-based learning improve student achievement in science? Specific Research Question Will WebQuests help improve student achievement when learning about Magnets (Invisible Power)? What is a WebQuest? A WebQuest is an inquiry-oriented lesson format in which most or all the information that learners work with comes from the web. WebQuest.org. Department of Educational Technology, San Diego State University. 2008. Retrieved 2013-03-12. Magnetism Website Overview A Webquest is broken into 6 parts, as listed above. Introduction Task Process Evaluation Credits Teacher’s Notes Classroom Context • I teach 3 classes of multiage grade ¾ science. • Conducted WebQuest with all 3 classes. All three classes were observed but data were collected only from my class • Class size for 3 classes was 18, 19 and 19 students. Detailed Timeline • • • • • • Research WebQuests (Google/scholarly articles); Send home permission slips; Give students survey about their learning style in science; Show students some already created science Webquests to get them use to the routine; Buy resources I needed for magnets; Do pre-test on Magnetism. Detailed Timeline • • • • • Create and upload WebQuest online: http://www.k12.nf.ca/woodlandelem/WebQuest/ Action%20Research/Magnets/Magnets.html Have students do the WebQuest on Magnetism that I designed, take video clips and pictures; Evaluate students’ assessments (worksheet, poster); Do post-test on Magnetism; Compare Data. Science Learning Survey I had students do a pre and post learning survey to see how they liked to learn science, determine if their feelings changed about the way they learn science and also to get a better understanding of my students. The first percentage is the pre-survey and the second percentage is the post-survey. Learning Survey 1. I like to figure out things? Agree 74%/79% Somewhat Agree 21%/21% Somewhat Disagree 5%/0% Disagree 0%/0% Most students liked to figure out things both before and after the webquest. During survey I explained what “figure out things” meant. Learning Survey 2. I work better on my own? Agree 21%/21% Somewhat Agree 16%/5% Somewhat Disagree 42%/53% Disagree 21%/21% More students, after the WebQuest, did not want to work on their own. Learning Survey 3. I work well with others? Agree 32%/47% Somewhat Agree 32%/42% Somewhat Disagree 16%/11% Disagree 21%/0% After doing the Webquest, more students enjoyed doing group work than before. Learning Survey 4. I do better when I work at my own pace? Agree 95%/95% Somewhat Agree 5%/5% Somewhat Disagree 0%/0% Disagree 0%/0% There is no change. Learning Survey 5. I am comfortable using the computer/internet? Agree 58%/68% Somewhat Agree 21%/21% Somewhat Disagree 21%/11% Disagree 0%/0% More students are more comfortable using the computer, the internet and sending documents to the printer, than before the WebQuest. Learning Survey 6. Choose in order from 1 (most important), 2 (important), 3 (least important) how you like to learn science: Computer 37%/42% Textbook/Notes 0%/0% Experiments/Hands-on 63%/58% There is marginal change before and after the Webquest, students continue to enjoy doing hands-on activities the most, with computers the second preference. Nobody liked reading or taking notes. Student Evaluation Students enjoyed creating the posters. I used a rubric to score, which was also on the Webquest website. Student Evaluation Magnetism Pre and Post Quiz Magnetism Pre and Post Quiz The class average of the pre-quiz was 63%. The class average of the post-quiz was 88%. The conclusion is that students learned from the Webquest. How Students Felt Jack & Michael Sholanda & Madison How Students Felt Kaitlyn & Kyla Lydia, Hannah & Amy How Students Felt Cole, Steven & Jules Jamianna & Amelia Teacher Observations • I found creating the website a lot of work; however, once done it can be used again. • Most students enjoyed doing the Webquest. However, LD students had difficulty reading instructions from Webquest. • Students interest in using computers for science increased. As well, students still enjoyed doing hands-on experiments. Conclusion In conclusion, based on the data, student observations and interviews, students did achieve more in science using webquests.