Research Skills Teacher Resources
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The Research Process: A Dress Rehearsal
Ninth graders perform research in this unique form of a lesson. They use this time as practice for creating a formal research presentation. Students choose a topic and narrow it down and brainstorm ways to present the information found.
Making inferences about the 2000 presidential election
“Hanging chads.” While these two words may be infamous to most of us, few middle schoolers understand their importance to the presidential election of 2000. As an exercise in drawing inferences, class members examine a Mini Page article about the changes made in political policies and election laws prior to the 2004 election. They make inferences and then check the validity of their assumptions by conducting research. Directions for the activity, links to required resources, assessments, and modifications are included in the detailed packet.
The Research Process: A Dress Rehearsal
Tenth graders investigate how to conduct research without writing a research paper. In this research lesson, 10th graders work in groups to research one topic. Students break down their topic into smaller subjects and each member chooses a creative way to present their findings through an oral presentation or visual aids.
Fahrenheit 451- The Granger Experiment
Young scholars read the novel Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. They then conduct research on British and American literature from 1800 to the present and select a book that they believe is important and should survive in the event that all books and literary resources are destroyed. They memorize and recite a portion of the work they have selected and justify their book's importance to humanity based on the research they have conducted.
Global Issues Research Project
Students examine different global issues and share their learned information with others. Students choose a topic to research, write a research essay, conduct a survey about knowledge and attitude toward chosen topic, and create an oral and visual presentation of their researched information.
Are Sharks as Dangerous as We Think They Are?
Students conduct research to address the question, "Are sharks as dangerous as we think they are?" They present their findings in oral presentations.
In this conducting research instructional activity, students read 1 paragraph pertaining to the research process and then respond to 20 short answer questions.
Application of the Principles of the Constitution
If you want to challenge your US government class, this assignment requires them to identify a contemporary issue or event that reflects the four main principles of the Constitution (federalism, separation of powers, protection of individual freedoms, adaptability/flexibility). Working in pairs, groups conduct research to prepare for a presentation to the class. This is a great exercise to measure a deeper understanding of constitutional principles.
Assessing Research Materials
Teaching learners how to evaluate a research source is an important part of the research process. The fresh idea here is that groups first develop a list of reasons why resources should be evaluated, transform these reasons into criteria, use the criteria to develop a rubric, and then test their rubric against two resources (one reliable, one not). Although designed for teacher candidates, the process outlined would work equally well for the secondary classroom.
Students examine why some countries are rich while others remain poor. They view a video on the website, Guns, Germs and Steel, analyze primary sources to conduct research about plants and animals, and create a game based on their research.
Telling Time Timeline
Use the Internet and library resources to compose a telling time timeline -- a visual history of time. Students will develop research skills and gain perspective about telling time by discovering the history of clocks and time.
Twelfth graders integrate technology into the research process in order to advance skills. The research is done using the internet and other contemporary methods like the library. The research is then analyzed.
American Revolution: An Alternative History Book Study
Eighth graders use the Big6 research process to conduct research on key participants in the American Revolution including Patriots, Loyalists, and British Military figures. They read the novel Year of the Hangman by Gary Blackwood (or another alternative history novel). Students create American Revolution Trading Cards.
Literature biography project
Build upon your learners' skills in research, note-taking, outlining, and expository writing, while providing them an opportunity for independent learning as they complete a literature biography project. The activity is broken down into six easy steps, from making their choice on what author to research, to the writing of the bibliography. Each step is submitted separately and builds into a portfolio. The project can be modified to explore other topics concerning the author, such as an analysis of their childhood and how that is reflected in their writing.
Presidential Elections and American culture
What do statements made by presidential candidates reveal about what they want the public to believe about them? What can be deduced about American culture and values based on these statements? Do these values change over time? How do political messages reflect these changes? Class members access three Mini Pages and examine comments made by candidates in 1979, 1988, and 1995. They then craft their own campaign commercial. Included in the packet are detailed directions for the various activities, worksheets, and links to all required sources.
Start Your Engines: An Internet Research Lesson
Fifth graders engage in a lesson which offers informational how-tos for conducting research on the Internet. Three search engines are introduced and used to gather information to solve a specific problem.
Tour of the Solar System
Learners engage in science, math, and language activities as they do research on the components of the solar system. The class begins with some anticipatory activities and discussions before it is divided into small groups to conduct research on one specific space object such as a planet, the moon or comets. This resource provides a list of possible research prompts and activities for groups to complete. After the research is complete, each group prepares and presents a display on their objec
Alternative Energy Sources
After reading the True Story of the Three Little Pigs, sixth graders consider the use of sustainable and alternative energy sources. They participate is a panel discussion on the topic, conduct research and present their findings orally. This lesson is driven by research and discussion which make it collaborative and engaging.
Beginning Biography Research
Have your class read texts on a specific famous person using a Student Encyclopedia. They will learn to use basic research skills to answer questions about their famous person, take notes, and learn how to cite sources to complete a simple bibliography. Note: There is an extension to write a short report available.
Celebrate Hispanic Heritage
Students identify and describe traits that represent Hispanic cultures, research and analyze traditions and culture of Hispanic Americans, read observations Hispanics make about their identity, conduct research on issues of identity and heritage, formulate interview questions based on reading materials, summarize contributions of Hispanic Americans, and write biography about accomplished American that includes information on heritage and identity.