Wednesday, May 26, 2010

TechQuest Project Evaluation

I’ve learned a lot from the first phase of implementation of my New Student Academy TechQuest project. It was interesting to see it all come together at the end, at least the first stage of it. It’s really important that the entire is mapped out at least briefly, especially to guide you towards your end goal and to see the light at the end of the tunnel (although judging from mine, there never will be a clear “end”). That map will work as a guide for me during the next few months as I work to complete the entire project. Another important aspect that I would include would do differently is I would take a look at the resources I have for review (not for the actual teaching that I create myself, but for games and activities to send them to after they’ve completed my “class” and need more review) before I create my project. For example, if I have games to learn the information, and then I see the same games to use as resources, there isn’t a point in putting them in my project in the first place as actual learning, because they’ve already been created and I don’t want to reinvent the wheel.

I also am happy to say that I have found a quiz program to use to give feedback while the student is taking the quiz – ZOHO Challenge. It allows students to receive feedback and work their ways to the correct answer. It doesn’t just let the student go through the entire program without being accountable for their learning. It helps create a more meaningful experience with a higher accountability. I will be changing my entire project in regard to Google Forms and switch it with ZOHO. It is a great tool for students and teachers.

If I could give anyone a suggestion from my experience, it would be to 1) have a plan BEFORE you begin the project (actually written on paper), and 2) to start right away and work on it a little bit every week. If you don’t do this and it’s an assignment, you’re going to regret it. If you are just creating the project and it’s not a class you are going to feel overwhelmed and will probably give up if you don’t set a time frame and pace yourself. Also, something to think about is to make the project a stand-alone entity. For example, if you build this on your school website and you lose your job, you won’t be able to take the website with you. So, I recommend creating your own website to build the project.

Finally, I would do the same project again and would try to make more interaction in the learning process at the beginning of the project when the students are actually learning (and not reviewing). I plan to implement the next parts differently in this way (and change the number “class” to reflect this new way of viewing things). I will, as I have said before, use ZOHO Challenge and not Google Forms. I plan to implement this throughout my classes that I give. I will also be expanding my “Academy” to include all the materials and information we learn in class available to the students at home. 


  1. How will you "try to make more interaction in the learning process at the beginning of the project". I will be checking out ZOHO--thanks for the recommendation.

    I am interested in the project. I had a hard time getting a sense of what you did or did not do based on this blog. Can you give specifics? What part did you implement?

  2. It sounds like you have and are creating a meaningful educational tool for your students!

    I agree with the fact that you need a plan to follow and I like idea of doing a few steps at a time so it is not overwhelming. Also, I like the idea of making it a stand-alone so you can take your project with you wherever you go.

    I know I just started to utilize Google Forms and I can tell it is limiting. I cannot wait to use ZOHO Challenge for projects for my students. It is so great to see resources in action and that they are useful and not a waste of time. Our time is a valuable resource!

    Finally,I like the idea of using it more in the beginning of the learning process and not just for reviewing. Making it support your curriculum throughout the learning process and making it available to them at home makes it more beneficial to your students.

  3. Kerry,

    I agree that having a plan can be very beneficial. Given that this is your (our) first project of this type, I think that there was a lot of discovering, as to what things work and don't work as you go along. While this can be exciting from the standpoint of learning new things, it can also, as you said, become overwhelming and maybe frustrating at times.

    As you go along, even though you may feel as though you're inventing the wheel, you may just be creating better "tread" for it. Keep in mind that everyone learns differently and that using what exists and tweaking it a little may just broaden the scope of learners you reach and may just make it that much better in the end.

    You've incorporated some great ideas and have given those kids who start late a means of catching up. At the same time, as a Special Ed. teacher, I'd be excited for my students to have the opportunity to learn in your class as well. The reason I say this is that you've not only created a tool to help kids catch up, but also one that affords extra practice for the kids who can't keep up and needs extra practice. You've gone into the realm of different learning styles with your project and that opens up the language to a new group of people who may not have attempted it before. :)

  4. Hey!

    Greetings from the Zoho Challenge team. Thank you for mentioning Zoho Challenge. We're glad you like the product.

    We're constantly looking for suggestions to improve the application. We want to make test creation and delivering an easy process for teachers.

    You're always welcome to send your feedback to or you can post your ideas in the forums.