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Waltee’s Quest: The Case of the Lost Art

What it is: The Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland has one of the most incredible site for students I have seen.  Waltee’s Quest is an interactive adventure where students help solve a mystery and discover a variety of art along the way.  Students begin their adventure by watching an introduction animation of the Walters Art Museum where inside curator Waltee is getting ready for an exhibit and preparing the museum for visitors.  While Waltee is preparing, lightning strikes, the elevator shakes, and a wild whirlwind takes all the museum treasures with it.  Students ride a magical elevator to travel to different worlds in an effort to find the lost art.  As students explore the different rooms, they discover treasures and learn about the real museum items. Students can click “Learn more” every time they discover a new item and the “Walteepedia” opens up with more information. This is truly one of the most engaging, interactive, sites I have seen.  I love that the site drops students in the middle of a story mystery and enlists their help to right the museum.  As students explore each room they learn more about history, see incredible artwork, and get an inside peek into being a museum curator.  The graphics and attention to detail are really amazing! How to integrate Waltee’s Quest into the classroom: Waltee’s Quest was created with attention to detail.  When students begin their quest, they are asked to enter a name and passcode.  This combination can be used at a later time to access a saved game.  This makes it ideal for the classroom where students may not have time to complete the game in one sitting. Students can visit Waltee’s Quest as a center on classroom computers.  Because students can track their progress, they don’t have to complete the game in one sitting but could work on it in bits and pieces throughout the school year.  The quest allows students to get up-close and personal with a variety of art and history.  Students can use what they learn in Waltee’s quest as a launching point for art history or as inspiration for a creative writing piece.  Students can write a story about the art itself, about Waltee and his quest, or a mystery based on the game. In the elementary classroom, Waltee’s Quest can be used to introduce students to the idea of mystery.  If you have a projector-connected computer or interactive whiteboard, students can work together to explore the museum and find treasures.  As students find clues, they can work together to solve the mystery. Waltee’s Quest can also be used as a virtual trip to an art museum, if you can’t swing a trip to a local art museum as a class, this site will provide students with the next best option in a way that engages them in discovery. Tips: Make sure that students know to write down the name and passcode they use to login, if they want to return to their game they will need this later! Please leave a comment and share how you are using Waltee’s Quest in your classroom.

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Google Story Builder: Create a video story Google style

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Create, Evaluate, Foreign Language, Government, History, inspiration, Interactive book, Interactive Whiteboard, Knowledge (remember), Language Arts, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Social Studies, Spelling, Subject, Technology, Understand (describe, explain), video, web tools, Websites | Posted on 18-03-2014

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iLearn Technology Google Story Builder- Easily create short video stories

What it is:  I can’t help but love Google’s commercials. They are brilliant in their simplicity and weave together a story beautifully. In the past, Google let you build a story by way of a Google search. Now with Google Story Builder, you can build a video story that looks like it is being typed live between two collaborators in a Google doc. SO very happy! It couldn’t be simpler, any age could create a fantastic little video with this tool! Students create some “characters” for their story. These characters are the Google Doc collaborators. Next, students type text for each collaborator to add to the doc. Finally, students choose music to accompany their video. That is it! When students are finished with their video, they can share it via a weblink.

How to use Google Story Builder in your classroom: Google Story Builder is an outstanding little tool for sharing a story or learning. It allows students to demonstrate learning or understanding in a fun, easy way. A lot of tools can become THE focus of a project. You know how this goes, as soon as you mention that students will be creating a video project all of the learning journey goes out the window and immediately the focus is on the hilarious video they are going to create. The learning can become an after thought. With Google Story Builder, this isn’t the case. The outcome is going to look similar for everyone so the focus is the learning and story. Creativity comes through the story and the music chosen. This is the best kind of creativity, it requires students to know the topic or subject well enough to create a mini parody of it.

Students could use Google Story Builder as a book report. Students can think about major themes or the climax of a story and retell it through the collaboration the story characters in this Google Doc. How awesome would it be to have Romeo and Juliet creating a document together? How about Junie B. Jones and That Jim I Hate? The Little Red Hen asking for collaborators for her latest cooking project?

As students learn about major players in history, they can create a Google Story about those historical figures and their interaction if they had a shared Google Doc. For example students might imagine the writers of the US constitution drafting the constitution as a Google Doc. Or Galileo arguing with the “church” (the story I told in my video).

Students could personify any inanimate object or idea as a character in a Google Story. How about parts of speech arguing which part of speech is the best or should be used in the sentence being typed? Countries of the world telling all about what they are known for? Periods of history as characters? Science ideas (evolution vs. creation)? Math stories including characters like Odd Todd and Even Steven? The possibilities are as varied as your student’s imaginations!

Teachers can create a Google Story to help their kids with inference. Create a story between two characters and ask students to infer about context. What is happening? Do you think the characters are friends or foe? Why? What do you think they are working on together?

Tips: I created the Google Story above as an example. What will you use Google Story Builder for in your classroom?

 

Rodan + Fields Consultant

Comments (3)

Hey

its not working anymore? When I try your link or my own it gives error:

“Traceback (most recent call last):
File “/base/data/home/runtimes/python/python_lib/versions/1/google/appengine/ext/webapp/_webapp25.py”, line 714, in __call__
handler.get(*groups)
File “/base/data/home/apps/s~docsstorybuilder/0-5-2.374820600079542031/app/pages/story.py”, line 50, in get
self.render(“story”, cgi.escape(values))
NameError: global name ‘cgi’ is not defined”

My name is Megan Long and I am a student in EDM 310 at the University of South Alabama. Before this class, I never really explored all of the resources that Google has available for free. Now, I am using Google Mail, Google Drive, and Google Calendars. I have never heard of Google Story! I believe that this is a great resource for teachers to use in the classroom, especially for visual learners. I will definitely explore this resource more. Thanks for sharing!
If you would like to connect with me through social media: LongMeganEDM310.blogspot.com, Twitter @MeganElaineLong

Sad! It looks like it is currently not working :(

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