Interest Inventory Webquest

Introduction:

    The first day of class, a teacher should start to get to know her students.  The teacher needs to know their attitudes about the subject area being taught as well as information on what interests the students including the activities they participate in,  the music they listen to, and the movies they watch.  Some teachers like for students to write an essay about themselves, other teachers ask questions that guide students into giving the information that the teacher thinks is important.  The interest inventory is usually given the first day of class.  It is recommended that the teacher orally ask the students the questions about movies, music, etc to help establish a rapport in the class.  The teacher should also answer the questions so that the students get to know the teacher on a more personal level.  This sets the tone for the classroom environment.  It also gives the teacher ideas about rewards that may work with that particular set of students.

    It is also recommended to establish a file for each student and to place this completed document in the file.  If a students has academic difficulty or behaviioral issues in the class, the teacher can refer back to the interest inventory and open up conversation based on the information within the inventory.  For example;  a student does not turn in homework assignments.  Check the interest inventory and see if he/she works late hours or maybe participates in a sport.  A brief converstaion with the student about solutions to the late work night homework woes may work out a compromise that both teacher and student can live with.  A conversation with coach of the sport may end all of the homework problems in your class.  The Interest Inventory paves the way to get to know your students, what they like in a class and in activities, extracurricular likes and dislikes, and various interests.

The Task:

    You are to create a set of questions that will help you get to know your students' thoughts on your subject area, their interests,  and basic background information about them as well as their family.  There are no minimum or maximum number of questions.  Just make sure that questions are asked about:
1.    your subject area and school in general,
2.    interests in sports, music, and movies
3.   work schedules and  homelife (how many people live in your house, brothers and sisters, etc)

The Procedure:

    1.   Browse the internet resources below
    2.   Identify a format and question structure that you will use to create your interest inventory.
    3.   Write a set of directions that allow the students not to answer all of the questions
    4.   Write questions about your subject area to get to know your students' thoughts and attitudes about your subject area better
    5.   Write questions about what interests students (music, movies, sports, etc) to get to know what may motivate students and give the teacher a place to start building a rapport.
    6.   Write questions about the students background information (address, brothers, sisters, work schedule, schools attended, etc) to better get to know students on a personal basis.
    7.   Double or triple space the questions to give students room to write.
    8.   Make the font fun and entertaining making the inventory look user friendly.
   

Resources:

    http://srv650.hrdc-drhc.gc.ca/cslp-pcpe/cl/28/sp-pe/sp_q1.jsp

    http://www.markhamdistrict.hs.yrdsb.edu.on.ca/guidance/Interest%20Inventories.htm


http://www.saskschools.ca/curr_content/adapthandbook/learner/interest.html

http://www.nagc.org/Publications/Parenting/6-97_Pgs20-23.pdf


http://www.aea10.k12.ia.us/curr/stw/Lessons.html


http://www.k8accesscenter.org/training_resources/mathdifferentiation.asp

http://www.phschool.com/eteach/social_studies/2001_10/essay.html

Conclusion:

    You should now create an interest inventory of questions that you think would help you to get to know your students better.  You can use questions from the webquest resources if you would like.  Make sure that the questions have 3 themes:

1.   Your subject area (do students like your subject area, what is the hardest thing about your subject area, and other questions to give you an idea of their thoughts and attitudes about your subject area).

2.   The students' interests and extracurricular activities (favorite music, movies, sport, and anything else that would help a teacher learn about what interests and motivates students).

3,   The students' background information (brothers, sisters, work schedules, schools attended and any other piece of information that helps the teacher better understand the students).

Make sure that your interest inventory has a set of directions that permits students to not answer all of the questions and also be sure to provide a space for the students to write their names.

Examples of Interest Inventories:

            Margo Simpson’s Interest Inventory

            Toni Erwin’s Interest Inventory

            Dave Bennett’s Interest Inventory

Interest Inventory Assessment:

The Rubric is located in the syllabus under assessment and grading.