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Teacher Resources by Grade
|1st - 2nd||3rd - 4th|
|5th - 6th||7th - 8th|
|9th - 10th||11th - 12th|
Research Building Blocks: Hints about Print
|Grades||3 – 5|
|Lesson Plan Type||Minilesson|
|Estimated Time||60 minutes|
Children are naturally curious—they want to know "how" and "why." Teaching research skills can help students find answers for themselves. "Hints about Print," taken from a research skills unit, is a step towards students completing a written research report. Here, students examine abstracts on selected books to determine their relevance and helpfulness. They brainstorm characteristics they would use when looking for a book as a research tool. They then carefully examine an information text, using their brainstormed criteria. Finally, after viewing an online demonstration, students practice evaluating resources.
Hints about Print: This online tool demonstrates the process of evaluating a nonfiction print resource to determine its appropriateness for a research project.
Nonfiction Book Evaluation: Students can use this form as a guide in evaluating resources for a research project.
Teaching the process and application of research should be an ongoing part of all school curricula. It is important that research components are taught all through the year, beginning on the first day of school. Dreher et al. explain that "[S]tudents need to learn creative and multifaceted approaches to research and inquiry. The ability to identify good topics, to gather information, and to evaluate, assemble, and interpret findings from among the many general and specialized information sources now available to them is one of the most vital skills that students can acquire" (39). In her article "Rethinking Research," Eileen A. Simmons agrees: "We can't expect students to produce outstanding research papers unless we teach them strategies for gathering information, analyzing, synthesizing, and evaluating that information through critical thinking." (115)
Dreher, Jean, et al. 2000. Easy Steps to Writing Fantastic Research Reports (Grades 3-6). New York: Scholastic Professional Books.
Simmons, Eileen A. "Rethinking Research." English Journal 89.1 (September 1999): 114-117.