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.Continue reading Show less
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.