Evidence-based Info-Lit

School Year 2015 ~ 2016

Goal: Gather evidence that shows student learning and engagement in research skills. Evidence should come from various content areas in grades 6-12.

Goal: Reflect on work I created and lessons I taught to support student learning.

Goal: Create a 6-12 research skills continuum to use with teachers for planning purposes.

August / September 2015

English, grade 10

Holocaust WebQuest

Student Work: 

Exemplary / Average

My Reflection: 

       The task was to create some kind of experience for students in one lesson which would give them some context for the events of the Holocaust before beginning to read a class novella, Night. I created a WebQuest using various high-interest websites. The questions were designed to spark thinking and also require students to skim and scan for answers. Some questions were for factual recall, some were to help students connect the history to their own lives in some way. (See Holocaust WebQuest)

I was not able to attend the lessons when students completed the activity, but one teacher (Miranda) kindly sent me the results of some of their work. Most were completed fully and showed good understanding; a few others were incomplete due to lack of time, lack of interest, or lack of understanding. In talking with the teacher afterward, it seemed that a bit more time was needed to complete the task well. She reported that students enjoyed the activity. From their comments, I can see that several points were completely new to them, so I do get a sense that they learned quite a bit about this period in history.

As far as research skills, I didn't have a chance to observe them, but I can guess that those who completed the work best were able to navigate the sites better and used better skimming strategies than the others.

English, grade 9

Digital Storytelling and Copyright

Lesson Guide

My Reflection:

     Students learned about the importance of copyright and the idea that they can use filters in google and use other web sources to find images that are copyright-free. They learned about creating a license for their own work, and chose a license for their final product. I showed them how to use EasyBib to create citations, how to format the works cited page properly, and how to "read" a works cited page to catch mistakes.
     I would have liked to come at the end of the unit to help students build their works cited page in class. They would have benefitted from actually doing that work alongside the lesson, rather than having the lesson early before they had gathered all of their citations.

Grade 8 Science
Chemical Compounds - Up for Debate

Research Guide

Exit Ticket: What is your winning argument? Students wrote on a index card without looking at their notes or talking with their partners. This helped us see which individuals had a solid understanding of their argument before the debate.

Videos of Work time

Sample debate
Feedback results

My Reflection:

      This was a big unit that incorporated a lot of research skills. Students learned about Cornell note-taking, which was a good fit for debate since it kept their notes easy to see at a glance. They used the research guide which forced them to interact with quality information and to use databases. Overall, I was very happy with their level of engagement, grit, and their ability to gather and understand the information they needed to support their arguments.
     Student feedback showed that they would have liked more time to gather their information, so an increase to three full sessions would probably help. Also, I think some time as a group to talk about their findings in a more organized way would have helped.
    This was my favorite use of my time at FDR so far because I was involved in the planning from the beginning and was present at every session. 

Science, grade 7

Socially Responsible Solutions

Research Guide

My Reflection:

     I did not teach during this unit so I'm not sure how well the guide worked for students. I heard from the teachers that it was helpful but I didn't get to actually observe the students using it. I wish I had made a feedback form for students to complete so I could have known which resources they used the most.

Science, grade 6

Chemistry in our Everyday Lives

Research Guide

My Reflection:

     I taught students how to use the research guide, talking about the differences among the three types of sources we wanted them to use: databases, websites, and news websites. They were able to navigate the pages easily and found the information helpful. They loved the videos that were part of each topic. I didn't get to stay on to see their final results, but the teachers reported that their essays had good information. 
     I would have liked to follow up with them about citations. This would also have been a good assignment to teach about the difference between paraphrasing and summarizing.

Other work in August/September:

EE Workshop about citations. This needs to be given in grade 11 before students begin their research. Having this session on the grade 12 work day was not as effective.

October 2015

November 2015

Grade 8 Science
Genetics Unit

Research Guide

        I was pleased to be able to focus the skills in this unit on close-reading and other literacy skills. The content, controversial issues related to genetics, was a good fit for slowing down the reading process to understand the chosen articles deeply, then to move to summarizing, and finally synthesizing. As a planning team, we decided to limit the amount of "research" time by limiting the number of sources students could use. Starting with one common source, I taught mini-lessons on each of the literacy skills shown on the guide. We moved into outlining the information, using a form to keep ideas organized and connected with their source. The final project, an in-class written essay (using the outline) seemed to go well. I need to get some of these samples from the teachers.

Other work in November:
Google Calendar Training sessions

December 2015
English, grade 10
Graphic Novel MemoirsRefugee Crisis Guide

Google Training Preparation

March 2016

Humanities, Grade  7
Romans and Mongols 
Research guide

English, Grade 10
Gender Issues

Opposing Viewpoints lesson

Grade 6 and 7 Science 
Science Showcase 
Research Guide and Mothership

Grade 8 Science 

Research Guide and Mothership

Grade 8 Humanities 

Industrial Revolution
Research Guide and Talking Point Grids

Other work in March

Grade 10: Membean set-up 

April 2016

Grade 6 English

Grade 9 Humanities
Migration Research Guide

English Department
NoRedInk Proposal

May 2016

Grade 10 Humanities
Migration Essay Citation Lessons:
Lesson 1
Lesson 2

June 2016

Library Transition meetings
Build new library website

IB Psych, citation lesson

1 comment:

  1. Sarah, this is amazing documentation of your work over this year. Thank you for sharing this record and all your reflections.