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Monday, May 6, 2013

Research Options

With some warmer weather has come buds and even a few blossoms. I marvel at how differently the buds manifest themselves, depending on the tree species and type. Most of the maples in our yard simply get reddish buds on the branch tips, but our neighbors' maple has the added fluffy hairdo, making the tree appear to be ablaze. Soon, all these maples will display similar leaves.

My former English teachers each seemed to teach a different way of conducting research, all hoping to guide students to an organized final product. Some methods were more cumbersome than others for me, but I dreaded the outlines most. I have taught students how to use outlines, notecards, t-charts, and various inquiry methods, but in the end, each will have a preferred method for conducting research.

I have been conducting research of my own lately, and I am refining what I prefer, what works best for how my brain works and how my questions flow. Though I have a general idea of what I want to know, I have loved how one topic leads to another and how a source can direct me to several others. I am reminded again to provide students with choices so they, too, can discover what fits best for their style.


  1. As you know, teaching research is really, really tricky because of the many different learning styles of students. I taught research papers to high school students, primarily 10th graders, and it more than challenging ... and difficult for both students and teachers. The rigidity of form has been lessened over the years and the current methods make much more sense now than in previous years.

  2. Oh yes, you are a magnificent teacher!! Carry on! and lucky are the children who attend your school!

  3. This just makes me wonder what you are researching . . .