EDTEC 700: Blogging in the Classroom

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Classroom Blog Project

As a high school biology teacher, i would like to do a "hot spot" type fictitious blog site for students. Students will keep a blog or "live diary" in terms of their recations to the events on during their evolutionary trip. Set 200 years ago off the coast of South America.

This two week blog project will involve the following:
Topic: Evolution
Key Aspects: California Content Standards.

note: this blog activity will be closely aligned with the content standards to allow for acceptable use in my classroom.

Each ship will have 6 crew members each, who are sailing around the Galapagos Islands. Also, i as teacher will post a daily "Ship's Log or Activity Report" which will lead the students into activities to create meaning and perspectives based an the content standards.

Crew Members will have a specific role.
1. Dr. Research - Evolutionary Scientist
2. Deckhand / Second mate - The protege - Scientist Assistant
3. Captain - (the antagonist)
4. First Mate - Intelligent Design Theorist (also antagonist)
5. Engineer - Scientific Method Controller
6. Navigator - Data Recorder

The activity will last for 2 weeks, (3 class meetings per week)

i have 120 biology students therefore I will set up 20 ships with 6 crew members each. Also, i'll vary the ships log for each ship therefore each "ships" experience will be slightly different yet by the end have similar outcomes.


At 10:09 PM, Blogger Stacy said...

I really like this project! I think it creatively addresses the California Science content standards through student role-playing.

I would recommend having a specific set of experiments and observations that could have been performed on a sea voyage 200 years ago (physical descriptions of plants and animals, hydrographic measurements pertaining to salinity, temperature, etc).

Darwin's book The Voyage of the Beagle would, of course, be an excellent resource for the actual voyage.

Researching Capt. Fitzroy in Wikipedia would be a good resource for the antagonists.

A great general resource pertaining to the role of naturalists and amateur scientists during this great age of scientific research would be Humboldt's work as described in his book Kosmos. This is, in fact, a wonderful example of an early "Wiki" in which voyaging scientists collected data from around the world in an amazing collaborative effort. There is a great article about Humboldt in Wikipedia.

At 8:41 PM, Blogger Stacy said...

On a lighter note...

How about a fun way to introduce Darwin from a biologist at Swarthmore College?

Educational and entertaining!

At 6:38 AM, Blogger Matt said...

This is a fantastic idea, and I am very impressed with the motivational issues placed into the project. I believe that the students will appreciate your time and effort placed into the project, and they will respond accordingly. It seems like the teacher planning is very important in this process. Clear goals with a clear rubric for the project's end will help guide the students where you want them to go. Good Luck.

At 5:32 PM, Blogger Karl Cleveland said...

I like the role-playing aspect of the blog, and think this could be fun for students, provided they're happy with their role. You should check out this site on evolution: Becoming Human. It's a great example of using the web for documentary, as has some fun interactive and learning components.

At 11:06 AM, Blogger GringleGirl said...

I think with the suggestions made during discussion today, this should be a rewarding experience for all. I wish my high school biology class was this interesting. I like the idea of tying it all together with an essay.


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