Seventh Grade Research

Projects:

Social Studies: Ancient MesoAmerica

Science: Medical Reports (Disease)

Research Skills Taught in the Library

This year students learn to organize their notes notes into subtopics as they are taking notes.  Again, we provide lined note taking sheets, which look a lot like the sixth grade sheets, except that students will keep one set of sheets for each subtopic.  (Click here for the Research Sub-Topic Form.)

Seventh graders continue to learn how to take notes efficiently, effectively and responsibly to avoid unintentional plagiarism.  We continually reemphasize our mantra: own words, own order, one idea per note. New areas of focus:

One idea per note. This becomes more complicated this year.  We emphasize that research is about learning and understanding, not just taking as many notes as possible.  Rather than simply reading a sentence, taking a note or two reading another sentence, etc, students learn to:

  • read a paragraph
  • understand it
  • determine the key ideas
  • then restate those ideas in their own words.

So, while in 6th grade it was acceptable to write the subject’s date of birth on one note, in 7th we might expect to see date, place and any other pertinent family info all in one note.

Own words. For the Medical reports, we show students that sometimes sources (especially scientific or medical sources) will use technical terms that need to be copied exactly.  Sometimes these are familiar words like “blood” and “muscle” which do not have appropriate synonyms, and sometimes these are scientific terms like “bronchial tubes” which the student would need to define. If a note contains many technical terms or phrases, try to change the order of the words significantly to avoid plagiarism.  As always, make sure you understand the idea before you take the note!

Internet Skills Taught in the Library

eBooks and Databases: Now that every student has an iPad, we encourage them to use the eBooks and Databases we provide. Follow the links under Research and Digital Sources to find out more.  With the iPads, every student can access the same great sources at the same time, or even from home. Additionally, databases often give you the citation, making your life a little easier!