Thursday, February 28, 2008

Lesson 28

Follow this step by step guide to a good newspaper article:
1. What was your research question for your Dust Bowl article?
2. Research your question using keywords in a search engine. Find two reliable and relevant (useful) Web sites. Use your Evaluation Checklist (in your folder) to help with this.
3.Take notes on the information on your Web site.
Title of Web Site 1: _______________________
URL: ____________________________
Information I Can Use: My Notes:
Direct Quote 1
Direct Quote 2
What does the site say in answer to my question?

My response to what the Web site says about my question:

Web Site #2: ____________________________
URL: ___________________________________
Information I Can Use: My Notes
Direct Quote 1
Direct Quote 2
What does the site say in answer to my questions?

My response to what the Web site says about my question:

4. Now, open a new Word Document.
5. Save it as “DustBowlArticle1” in your English Students folder in your home directory.
6. The HOOK: Grab the reader's attention by using an opening sentence which is a question or something unexpected!
7. First paragraph: In the first few sentences, answer these questions:
8. Now, give the details. It is always a good idea to include one or two quotes from people you interviewed. Write in the third person (he, she, it or they). Be objective. Use active verbs so the reader feels things are really happening!
9. Last paragraph: Write a good conclusion. You might try ending with a powerful quote from one of your sources.
10. By-line: At the end, state who wrote the article; 'By ....'.
11. Proof-read your article and edit where needed.
12. Add a citation for each of your sources.

Save your article again in the English Studies folder. You will be putting it into a newspaper template soon.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Lesson 27

My Question: _____________________________________

My Keywords: ______________________________________



My Search Engine: ____________________________________


Don’t forget to EVALUATE the two Web Sites you select! Use your EVALUATION HELP guide to assist you as you select two useful and reliable sites!

Title of Web Site #1 - ________________________________________

URL: ___________________________________

Direct Quotes My Notes My Response

Title of Web Site #2 - __________________________________________

URL: ___________________________________

Direct Quotes My Notes My Response


Helpful Strategies that I used to find my two Web sites:

Helpful strategies that I used to evaluate my two Web sites:

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Lesson 26

Students will write down their questions from the last lesson. They will think of 2 backup questions in case they are unable to find enough sites for the first question. They will then identify topic and focus keywords for the questions. Finally, they will find Web sites that they can use to answer their questions. They will record the URLs in a Word doc in their home directories.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Lesson 25: Asking Questions February 19, 2008

February 19, 2008 – Lesson 25 Questioning

When we’re researching a topic, we ask questions BEFORE to find out:

1. What do I ____ALREADY______ know?

2. What do I _________WANT________ to know?

We ask questions during the research to find out:

1. Where can I ______FIND______ the info?

2. Can I _____USE_______ this info?

3. Can I ______TRUST_______ this info?

We ask good questions because:

Good ____QUESTIONS________ lead to good _KEYWORDS_________;

Good ______KEYWORDS_______ lead to good ____SEARCHES______;

Good _____SEARCHES______ lead to good _____ANSWERS______!

Good questions have:

1. Appropriate _SCOPE_: Not too _SMALL__ nor too _LARGE__.

2. Are ___RESEARCHABLE___: it’s __POSSIBLE__ to find the answer on the Internet or in books.

If you can answer the question with a few clicks, the scope is too small.

If you’d have to ask lots of little questions, the scope is too large.

A question is UNresearchable if it:

1. Relies on __OPINION__ (Who’s responsible for the Dust Bowl?) or

2. Is ____UNCLEAR______. (What was the Dust Bowl like?)

Good questions have two parts:

1. ____TOPIC____ - General Inquiry

2. _____FOCUS___ - Specific Refinement

Questions that have a TOPIC and a FOCUS are researchable because these two parts become your keywords for searching.

You can tell if a question is likely to be a good one by asking:

Is it too large?

Is it too small?

Can you find the answer on the Internet?

Does it rely on opinion? Is it clear?

Does it have a topic and focus?

TOPIC: Dust Bowl

FOCUS: You pick (farming, weather, government, people, migration, life styles, etc)


When your question has been approved by Mrs. Gibbs or Miss Jackie, please post it on the blog!

Lesson 24 February 14, 2008

Synthesizing What We Read On the Internet

Lesson 24: February 14, 2008

A: ____________________________________________________

S: ____________________________________________________

R: ____________________________________________________

R: ____________________________________________________

S: ____________________________________________________

A: ____________________________________________________

Reading for Synthesizing

Partner Reading and Synthesizing

l Go to Mrs. Gibbs’ Web site

2. Click on the link for the PBS Dustbowl

3. Click on the link for People and Places

4. Click the link for the name of the person or event written below:

Your Person or Event:

Black Sunday

Read one paragraph at a time.

Partner 1: Read aloud for Main Idea

Partner 2: Read again, then pause to think and discuss

Together: Write your notes on the double entry page attached.

Together: Write your personal response on the attached page.

Together: When you’ve finished all of the paragraphs,

write your synthesis.

Together: Post your synthesis on the TICA Bulldogs Web site

Click on New Post

Type in your synthesis

Click on Post

Click on View Blog to see what everyone wrote

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Lesson 23 Synthesis

Synthesizing What We Read On the Internet

Lesson 23: February 12, 2008

What are we doing when we synthesize information from several sources?

Reading for Synthesizing

A: Activate prior knowledge;

S: Scan for key words;

R: Read through once to get the main idea;

R:Read through again - pause and think/discuss;

S:Summarize in your own words;

A: Add a personal response.

Write a Silly Sentence:


Practice Together

The realities were obvious. It was flat, treeless country where you couldn't count on rain, and the wind blew all the time. On old maps it had been sensibly labeled The Great American desert.



Practice Online Together



Thursday, February 7, 2008

Lesson 22 Feb. 5th 2008

Harlem Renaissance Project - Paraphrasing!

When we write about things we've read from online (or print) sources, we need to put the information into our own words. This is called paraphrasing, and it helps us to:
  • make the information our own by saying it in our own words
  • avoid plagiarizing material - a huge no-no!

Today, we're focusing on paraphrasing information from online sources.

You will receive a double entry journal with eight boxes:

In the first box, there is a direct quote from the encyclopedia about Langston Hughes. We'll read it together, then look at the box on the right to see how this quote was paraphrased.

In the second box down, there is another quote from the same article. Let's work together to paraphrase this one! We'll write out paraphrase in the box on the right.

Next, log back on to one of the sources you used for your Harlem Renaissance artist project. Find a quote from the article and write it in the 3rd box down. Write another in the 4th box. Work with your elbow partner to paraphrase each of those quotes.


  1. If you don't have all of your slides completed (please see Lesson 21 for list of slides you need), please finish those now!
  2. Look through each slide to see if you've copy-pasted information from sources, or if the wording is very close to the original.
  3. If you've not paraphrased the information that is on your slides, please do that now and include your original writing only on the slide.
  4. If you're quoting the article - or a person - word for word, make sure you have it in quotes and include the citation on your works cited page
Good luck! We'll take time off from lessons to look at your presentations on Thursday!