Virtual Woodland Wander
Younger children may need to practice this task in the schoolyard, to develop their procedural writing skills
Students will use their literacy orienteering skills to guide a scientist towards their favourite feature (treasure) in the Cumberland Plain Woodland.
Explore the woodland in 360º using the Virtual Woodland Wander and click on the hotspots to find out the plants and animals of the Cumberland Woodland.
Ask students to select their favourite feature (treasure) on the Virtual Woodland Wander and mark its location on the map provided on the student activity sheet.
Students write a set of step-by-step instructions to find their treasure using the Virtual Woodland Wander. Tell students that each ‘click’ of the mouse represents one ‘step’. Brainstorm descriptive terms students could use to write their instructions - for example, north, south, east, west, left, right, forward, straight, etc.
In pairs, students read their instructions to a partner and see whether their partner can find their treasure. As students read their instructions word-for-word, they are not allowed to give any further instruction. Students may need to refine their instructions a few times before their partner guesses the correct location.
Create a game where each time a student refines their instructions, they lose a point. Students with the most points (and therefore clearest instructions) win.
Prompt student reflection on the task. Did they guide the scientist successfully? Why or why not? What improvements to their instructions did they have to make, and how many times did they have to improve your instructions until their partner found the treasure?