Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Mrs. Cheney's students research

My 8th graders are in the middle of the beloved and much anticipated research paper. When I introduced the assignment, they clapped their hands with glee. Hands shot up with questions to be asked. Questions like, "Can I write more than six pages?" and "Is it okay if we only use primary sources?" and "What? The internet? We don't need the internet to write a research paper!" and "Plagiarism? No thank you! That's against the law, ma'am!" Yes, the fact-finding, note-taking, outline-writing, MLA-formatting excitement exceeds Christmas cheer in Mrs. Cheney's 8th grade language arts classes.

The best thing about the research paper is the process of discovery. I'll share a couple of examples with you:
  • I can't believe there aren't any books about Zac Effron in this library!
  • It's says here that Bob Marley liked to smoke pot!
  • All the websites about (guns, Nazis, Hitler, white supremacists, cocaine, Hugh Hefner (?!?), Ecstasy, etc.) are blocked!
  • Mrs. Cheney, this website is all about some guy who has the same last name as you! Are you related? (It was Dick Cheney, of White House fame)

Ahhhh, good times, good times!

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