Review by Shaun Langevin, Common Sense Education | Updated April 2019

GooseChase EDU

Digital scavenger hunts provide dynamic, fresh learning experiences

Subjects & skills
Subjects
N/A

Skills
  • Communication & Collaboration
  • Character & SEL
  • Critical Thinking
Grades This grade range is based on learning appropriateness and doesn't take into account privacy. It's determined by Common Sense Education, not the product's publisher.
3–12
Common Sense says (See details)
Teachers say (1 Review)
Privacy rating (How we rate)

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Pros: Highly engaging and fosters collaboration in any subject area.

Cons: Video recordings are a maximum of 15 seconds; devices must maintain internet connection.

Bottom Line: Students and teachers will enjoy the powerful learning of a modern scavenger hunt.

The types of scavenger hunts you can create with GooseChase EDU are only limited by your creativity. In language arts, try a vocabulary scavenger hunt; for the word "encumbered," students could snap a picture or take a short video of themselves carrying too many things. If students are studying using evidence from text, have them snap photos that back up a certain topic sentence. In math, students can find and submit photos of different geometric shapes or their solutions to problems. Teams could also submit videos (the maximum length is 15 seconds) explaining concepts like divisibility rules or strategies for multiplication facts. In science, students could find different elements around the school or go outside and search for vegetation and wildlife. Physical education teachers might have students record short videos of different badminton or volleyball skills. World language teachers could have teams submit short conversations, or they could name objects in a foreign language and have students submit photos of those objects.

During a scavenger hunt, a teacher can monitor all activity from the GooseChase EDU website. There are many extremely useful features available to teachers, such as removing submissions that miss the mark or awarding bonus points to teams. Most importantly, teachers can send messages to teams, a great option for communication when a scavenger hunt is taking place over a large area.  After completing a GooseChase, it's a good idea to bring the class together to process some of the findings.

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GooseChase EDU is a web-based platform that creates scavenger hunts for an app of the same name on mobile (iOS and Android) devices. First, teachers go to the website to create a new game with a basic description. Teachers then add missions to their game. Each mission is a scavenger hunt clue, which comes in three types: photo/video, text, or location. Photo and video questions are the most popular, where students submit a picture or video (limited in length to 15 seconds). Text missions are completed by typing information. Location questions are interesting but less frequently used: The teacher can set it so that mobile devices fulfill a clue by being in a certain area, down to a 50-meter radius (though they recommend 100 meters). Teachers should take care not to place any location-based clues in areas with roads, cliffs, fast-moving water, or other hazards.

Students use an iOS or Android app as they complete the scavenger hunt. Teachers have the option to create teams and a starting/ending time for their scavenger hunt, and then assign each mission a point value, which is tallied as teams make their submissions. When the scavenger hunt is over, teachers can choose to download all of the media teams submitted -- a useful feature should the teacher choose to create a movie, presentation, or share some student findings on social media.

The free version of GooseChase EDU is limited to five teams with one active game at a time. This option will be sufficient for many teachers. The Educator Plus plan ($49 per year) allows for up to 10 teams of up to five devices each. This option also has an unlimited number of live games (more than one scavenger hunt can be live) and the ability to do individual games for 40 students. The Educator Premium plan ($199 per year) has the same capabilities but with up to 40 teams or 200 individual participants. Beyond this, school and district pricing is available.

GooseChase EDU can be used to create some amazing activities for any subject. Each step for creating a game has directions next to it, making the process a breeze. And there are plenty of example games on the site, although often the learning doesn't go beyond identification. To make the most out of the tool, teachers will need to spend time creating thoughtful activities that dig deeper. More depth could be added by allowing lengthier video submissions.

GooseChase EDU doesn't want to rack up a student's cellular data use, but including an option to upload video only when connected to Wi-Fi would solve this problem. With a two-minute limit, teams could read a passage or provide an analysis that's more fleshed out and meaningful. It would also be helpful to have a built-in feature that would support students by reading the clues. The location-style clues are cool, but a 50- or 100-meter radius limits their usefulness. Similarly, the devices students are using need to maintain an internet connection. This is a hindrance for classrooms that use iPads that connect to the internet only via Wi-Fi, as they can't take those devices in the woods or on a field trip and expect to be connected. An internet connection is a necessity for live updates as the scavenger hunt progresses, but it would be an improvement to at least have the option to perform a hunt offline and to upload media at a later time.

While the free version would be adequate for many teachers, it may frustrate others. For each game, teachers get up to five teams with five devices per team. There also can't be more than one live game at a time, which means teachers with several classes couldn't easily manage games that they wanted to go beyond the class period. 

Overall Rating

Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return?

Students will love working in teams and being creative with these fun digital scavenger hunts.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer?

Students write text and take photos and short videos to complete missions -- a powerful way for them to show learning. Teachers will need to create their own hunts to generate more meaningful learning.

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students?

Directions help teachers through the process of creating a scavenger hunt. Teams gain points, but teachers should provide students with more specific feedback.


Common Sense Reviewer
Shaun Langevin Technology coordinator

Teacher Reviews

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Featured review by
Brian W. , Other
Other
China Grove Middle School
China Grove, United States
Goosechase Edu - Making Scavenger Hunts Interactive
Goosechase is an amazing app that can increase student engagement and enhance learning. This tool helps takes the traditional scavenger hunt to a new level. The tool can be used to enhance field trips by allowing students to synthesize powerful learning connections and showing what they learning. It can also be used for collaboration when students are put into groups. ...
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