Creating Student Driven Input: GooseChase

GooseChase is an app that allows you to create scavenger hunt type games for groups.  I first experienced GooseChase in Katherine Gales’ classroom at Xavier High School last year.  Here is how I’ve used the app a few times:

  • I found some items or areas in our school that relate to something we’ve been reading or talking about.
  • I write some clues in Latin that lead the students to those items.
  • Students are in 3 groups and they follow the clues and take pictures to demonstrate they’ve completed the mission.

It is a nice change of pace.  Students have a chance to collaborate.  They process Latin messages that are connected to their school.  This is a great way to offer input with numbers, traveling to and from places and ideas connected to things that relate to your school.  One disadvantage of the free version is that there can only be 3 teams in a game.  Because of this it doesn’t work for large classes as the groups become far too big.

Today I realized there is even more power to the app.  While students are out completing the missions I see what they upload immediately.  If they don’t quite have my clue correct I can subtract points from their score and send them a message about why in the app.  This offers repeated input and a chance for me to recast the message in a slightly different way.  It also creates a communicative context in Latin as students are trying to solve the clues.

But that is only the start to the input power of using this app.  Tomorrow I will use the feed from the game students completed today to do image talks.  In Latin 2 we are ending the year with input about travel, going to and from places and our preferences in travel.  Tomorrow I will retell each group’s journey throughout the school using their images.  Basically I will do 3 mini story tells that recreates each group’s route through the school.  The input is compelling because students created it through their own style of pictures.

I spent about 25 minutes walking the school looking for a few interesting spots and making Latin clues for the game.  Students completed the goose chase today.  Tomorrow I will give the image talks and Monday I will have students write about their route.  GooseChase has provided 2.5 44 minute periods worth of input for me at the end of the year in a way that connects to students.  Need something different to do tomorrow?  Find some interesting spots in your school and write some clues and send the students off.

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