Before digital scavenger hunts existed, at birthday parties or just for fun, we would play the door-to-door scavenger hunt game (or as my friend’s mom called it, a wild goose chase). The first team to gather all of the items on the list was the winner!
So around the neighborhood we went asking for old light bulbs, a pair of mismatched socks, an egg…whatever wacky items the hunt creator(s) had dreamed up. It was always a lot of fun to participate, and I remember how this bonded teams together in a we came, we played, we conquered sort of way.
Fast forward 15+ years…I started hearing the buzz about an interactive App called Goosechase that could be used for a digital scavenger hunt in the classroom. Yesssss, I thought. This could be cool! (As you know, I’m all about using technology in the classroom!)
Getting Started with GooseChase
Last year, my goal was to use Goosechase to increase student engagement in my classroom. I used a Goosechase Digital Scavenger Hunt as a team-building activity at the beginning of the school year, and then used the App to facilitate “Adventure Week,” a week in the spring that kicks off our fourth quarter and asks students to “get out of their comfort zone.”
We define and talk about risk, have discussions about risk-taking in our society, and students form teams to challenge themselves socially, physically, mentally, and/or emotionally (our four main categories for risk-taking).
As a teacher, you have a lot of control over the digital scavenger hunt set-up. Here are some of the choices you’ll make:
- Password-protected or not?
- Individual or group play?
- Teacher-created groups or student-created?
- Teacher-moderated or not?
- One day or multiple days?
- What types of challenges will you issue?
- What types of proof of challenge completion will you accept?
Creating a Digital Scavenger Hunt
For Adventure Week I checked the box to allow students to create their own teams. I go over this more in the screencast below, but students will need to download the app, have ONE person from their desired team create the team and share the join code with other team members.
If you want to purposefully mix-up students for your Goosechase activity, you may create teams and assign students beforehand. For this option, before students log in, you will inform them of what team they should join.
Goosechase calls the individual tasks for students/groups “missions.” I tend to refer to them as “challenges” to set the right tone in my classroom.
There are a variety of pre-created missions which you can modify for your own digital scavenger hunt use, as well as a growing library of Goosechase games free for duplication and modification. Yessss!
For each digital scavenger hunt mission, you will need to decide and set a:
- Point Value
- Type of Proof Accepted (Limit to photo, video, or text, or allow students to decide.)
Monitoring Student Progress
It’s easy to monitor student submissions and progress with a digital scavenger hunt – no paper shuffling or tallying!
As a teacher, you’re able to see the leader board and easily sift through submissions on a mission-by-mission or team-by-team basis. If the proof submitted isn’t convincing enough, you may apply a negative point penalty. If the proof goes above-and-beyond, you may apply a bonus point reward!
I especially like that students can see the leader board and activity feed through the app. This means that students can see who is in the lead and by how many points, view the submissions of other teams, and keep track of their own progress!
Goosechase Digital Scavenger Hunt Tutorial Video
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