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Afterschool Curriculum Choice: Technology Resources

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Curriculum Details for
WolfQuest

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Resource Description
Staff, Planning,
and Costs
Standards, Research, and Evaluation

WolfQuest

WolfQuest is a free online game and resource that teaches wolf behavior and ecology through exciting game play and intense social interactions. Players immerse themselves in a 3-D wildlife simulation that leads to powerful informal learning. In addition to the game, WolfQuest supports an online community where players can post tips and strategies, ask questions of wolf experts, share personal artwork and stories, and test their knowledge of wolves.

Having launched at the end of 2007, with an updated version released mid-2008, WolfQuest is supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation.

Content Focus:
Science

Linkages to:
Social Studies, Life & Social Skills, Multimedia/Digital Literacy

Grades/Ages: Ages 10 and up

Costs: Free
The costs shown were accurate at the time of the review. Please check the publisher's web site for current prices.

Publication Date: 2007-08

Developer Contact Information
The Minnesota Zoo in partnership with the design team from eduweb.
http://www.wolfquest.org

Design Overview

The premise of the WolfQuest game is that players join a wolf pack made up of friends or computer-controlled wolves and live the life of a wild wolf in Yellowstone National Park. As a wolf, players explore the wilderness, hunt elk, and encounter strange wolves on their quest to find a mate. The challenges they face in this game reflect the biological needs and parameters in the real-world habitat of wolves. The game is designed to create strong emotional connections between players and wolves, changing player's attitudes toward wolves and habitat conservation in the real world.
  • Activity Types: self-directed online game, collaboration
  • Materials/technology required: Computer, WolfQuest Game (download for free from website) available for both Mac OS X and Windows machines; Internet required for a multiplayer game and recommended for accessing the online community

    For specific system and fastest graphics quality setting requirements visit: http://www.wolfquest.org/game_info.php

  • Program Length/Duration: Varies
  • Site Adoption: Informal Science Education (ISE) institutions, zoos, museums, afterschool programs, community centers, libraries

Instructional Approach

The WolfQuest game takes players through an interactive, virtual experience, where collaboration is necessary to move gameplay forward. This virtual environment provides an engaging first-hand learning experience for players that allow them to apply what they are learning in a real-world context.

Consideration of Special Student Populations

While the developers hope WolfQuest appeals to players of any age, they are specifically targeting young people, especially 10 to 15-year olds. They note that youth around this age often stop visiting zoos and lose their curiosity about animals. With the game and the offline activities it inspires (i.e., visiting zoos and parks), the developers hope to revitalize their interest in wildlife and the environment.


Online Training for Afterschool Staff
The Afterschool Training Toolkit is available online free of charge.

The following resources can be used with the online Afterschool Training Toolkit to give you the resources you need to build fun, innovative, and academically enriching afterschool activities.