As a librarian, I teach the importance of finding information. To get students excited about research, I have them select a research topic. With 500 students, this is a bit scary. However, they must follow my criteria when they select a topic.
1. You can't already know a lot about your topic. (If you used it last year, can't use it this year!) Not that I remember what they researched.
2. It has to be appropriate ( Understanding keywords and internet safety, somethings just won't get past the filter)
3. It has to be something real. (No aliens or unicorns)
I conclude, by saying what works well....
Famous people, places or things, animals, or sports. I then approve each topic and share with the entire class. This cuts down on the silly topics like chocolate chip cookies.
Each week we use a new reference. They need to find 3 facts each week in order to move on to the next reference.
Week 1-Books (Big Universe or Library Books)
Week 2- Encyclopedias
Week 3-1 Website ( This forces them to find the best website.)
Week 4-Wrap up
Week 5 &6 -Share our information with the entire class.
I teach the research, then the research goes back to the classroom after we share what we have learned. This year, I was excited to see a project based on their library research.