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Grade School WebQuest on Ancient Civilizations

written by: Linda M. Rhinehart Neas • edited by: SForsyth • updated: 10/31/2013

History can be fun with a WebQuest. Ancient civilizations and WebQuests become a challenging and interesting activity of students of every grade level. Whether researching one particular ancient civilization or comparing and contrasting several, a WebQuest get students involved in their learning.

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    Task

    Wikijunior Ancient Civilizations Composite When you first assign the WebQuest, have the students imagine they are stepping back in time. Give them a task that will create ample opportunity to investigate. Here are some ideas:

    • Imagine you live in ancient times. Your task is to find the best place to live. Research the various civilizations in and around Mediterranean. (Greece, Roman, Mesopotamian, Egyptian, etc.)
    • You are a travel agent. Your task is to pick three ancient civilizations to promote for your agency. Research all the aspects that travelers will want to know about.
    • You are a reporter for National Geographic. Pick an ancient civilization and prepare a report about the various aspects of the culture.
    • You are a time traveler who has just landed in an ancient civilization (pick one). Learn all you can about the civilization you land in so that you can report to others when you return.
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    Process

    The process of the WebQuest tells the students how they will be sharing the information they find. For all of the WebQuests above, Kon Tiki Museum, Oslo, Norway students can work in groups. Each person is an expert in a particular field of research such as, science, history, art, architecture, music, technology, etc. Each person is responsible for reporting to the class.

    Webquests are the most fun when there are various multimedia ways for the students to report on their research. This can be done with:

    Depending on what task is given for the web search, have the students prepare a presentation in which the entire group has the opportunity to present a part. Assign some form of written report; for instance, if they are travel agents, they must create a travel brochure, if they are reporters, they will create a magazine article or if they are time travelers, they can write a reflection on their travels.

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    Resources

    Teachers should give specific resources for the students to use in their research based on their age and grade level. This avoids the possibility of students getting lost surfing the net.

    There are several great sites on ancient civilizations. They include:

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    Assessment and Conclusion

    Assess students on various aspects of the WebQuest, including:

    • how well they worked together,
    • the quality of their presentations,
    • how well they covered the topic,
    • how well they accomplished the assigned task

    In conclusion, have the students reflect on all they have learned. Ask them to write a reflection paper at the end of the unit regarding what they learned, how they learned it and what, if any, suggestions they have for the future. Do not grade them on this paper.

    Article Resources:

    Ancient Civilizations WebQuest

    Photo Credit: Ancient Civilizations Composite, Kon Tiki