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.