Human Migration Web Quest

HUMAN MIGRATION WEBQUEST Essential QuestionHuman Migration: Why do people move from one place to another?

Courtesy National Geographic

Why do you live here? Your family moved here from another place. Why? Throughout recorded history, human beings have migrated from one place to another. All of us have participated in this human migration. In this project we will explore our own family migration stories and connect them to the story of human migration throughout the world. Along the way we will be interviewing family members, working together in groups, learning new ways of using the Internet and having lots of fun. At the end of the project we’ll share our stories and our projects with our families at a celebration dinner.

National Geographic Genographic Study
Male ID Number for DNA Sample FW35G5T4C7

Female ID Number for DNA Sample FW35S96D8Y

The Task and Product

In this project we will be learning more about our own families’ migration stories—as far back as we can get people to remember. We’ll also be collecting family pictures and other things people used to record or remember things from their past. We’ll scan these things or take pictures of them to include them in our stories.We will also be working with National Geographic’s Genographic project and what they have learned about human migration patterns around the world. We’ll be making connections between our own families’ stories and the global human migration stories. We’ll be working with Internet tools like Wikispaces and Google Earth and will have maps and pictures to support our stories. We’ll be using Audacity to record our own family migration stories.You will be working in groups of two or three, usually students who speak the same language at home so that you can review your materials together more easily. Each person will create and record his or her family’s migration story on the computer and will then add scanned images or digital pictures of things the family has to remember these stories.You will be creating a team Wikispace to write what you are doing and will be using that space to create a presentation connecting your migration stories with the global migration stories we are learning about from National Geographic.You will be using rubrics to evaluate what you are doing and to improve it. Everyone is expected to do the work required to show “mastery” for this project. Any work less than an “A” is not expected. Everyone will support everyone else to do the best we can as a class.Your final products will all be available on your team’s Wikispace and we will share these products with families at a celebration “pot-luck” dinner.

The Process

You will see the teacher model his family’s migration stories and make connections to the National Geographic Genographic project. (His family’s DNA was sent to National Geographic and was included in the global migration story you will learn about.) In your teams, you will first develop a working vocabulary to understand what you need to do on the projects. Then you will begin to create a format for an interview of your family members—in the languages they prefer to speak at home. You will have some questions you will ask them and you will borrow some photos or take pictures of family Bibles or other things they may have to show their migration story. In your teams, you will put together what you have learned into a story which you will record on the computer. You will then add digital images of the photos you have collected. Once the family stories are completed—according to the rubrics provided to your team. Your team will then start making the connections to the National Geographic Genographic project’s human migration story. We will use video-segments from United Streaming to help us understand how these connections are made. We will also read a series of stories to help us make more connections with the human migration story. Once we have gathered what our teams think we need, we will create a presentation on our Wikispace to share both our family migration stories with accompanying photographs and our connections to the human migration story. Along the way, we will get feedback from other teams (peer review) and formative feedback from the teacher which the team will use to make the presentations better. When the presentations are complete, we will share them in class and get ready to have a presentation for parents in a celebration evening that will include a pot-luck supper. This project will be complete as we finish our Geography unit—before the end of the first grading period.

We will be using resources available from the Internet and will be gathering information from family members. Much of our work will be on the computer and links to the resources will be provided on your Wikispace page.


Rubrics will be provided to you on the Wikispace page to guide your team to creating terrific products and in helping the other students in your class to develop terrific products in their teams. These rubrics will be used by everyone and the purpose of using them is to provide feedback so that the team can improve the products to the best possible. Remember that we are sharing these in two languages (often) and will be sharing this with our parents as well as others in the class. The best products (agreed on by the class) can be published on a separate Wikispace to share the best work our class is producing.


This web quest project allowed you to connect what we are learning in this class to your family’s own migration story, and to make connections to the people we share the class with and to the human migration story that goes back to the beginning of recorded history. Along the way we have learned how to use tools to work together, to find things on maps, to learn essential vocabulary we will need to understand Geography. We had fun, brought out our best work to share with parents, teachers, and friends, and have a solid foundation for our next unit. We even get to celebrate with a pot-luck dinner with our families..

Credits:Dr. Joel R. Montgomery, Canton Middle School, IL School District U-46
Last updated – August 8, 2008
Copyright © Joel R. Montgomery, 2008
WebQuest Templates used with permission.
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Team Wikispaces