24 December 2008

Traditional Reports: Begone!

Recently, another teacher and I were looking for an alternative to traditional biographies. We are finding that our AP World History students aren't paying attention to the people in history (though admittedly there IS an awful lot for them to grasp). We decided to give Glogster a try. Glogster asks you to 'poster yourself' and is actually something of a social networking site. However, they do have an education version that allows teachers to create a master account and sign up for student sub accounts. After being assigned an individual (or two) in history, pairs of students did a bit of research and put together a "Cliff Notes" version of the person's life and significance. Students can add photos/drawings, text, video and listen to music as part of their assignment. They can also link to sites for further information. The big thing is that they can draw from a variety of media to learn about a person.

For the most part, the BioGlogs (as we called them) came out pretty well, though we need to emphasize significance in history more. Below is an example from a group that had Locke, Montesquieu, and Rousseau.