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Exploratory Activities (Introductory/Focus)

 Students will make a list of print-based research materials available in the classroom or library (dictionary, thesaurus, atlas, encyclopedia, etc.)






 The 8th grade Computer Literacy learner will have an understanding of the use of the Internet as a research tool.




Concept Development Activities (Procedures/Activities)

 The instructor will lead a discussion of each of the resources listed by the students in the exploratory activity and in what way each is used as a research tool. Students will have selected a research topic in their history class. This topic will be the basis for this lesson.




Guided Practice

 Students will visit the following sites:

Miriam-Webster Online Dictionary

Roget's Online Thesaurus

Virtual Reference Desk: Maps and Atlases






Independent Practice

 Students will use B.J. Pinchbeck's Homework Helper ( to locate 5 research tools that the student will use in preparing the history paper, bookmark them, and be prepared to demonstrate their use to the class. Students will use a word processor to make a list of URL links to print out and take with them to their history and English classes.





Students will review the use of web-based tools in preparing a research paper..








 Students may prepare a web page for research tools which will be posted on the school intranet for the use of all students.






Materials, Resources, Software

Internet-capable computers

Browser software


Originality and Creativity

Student Products/Evaluation

 Students will endeavor to locate unique research tools and as a class prepare as extensive a list of them as possible.




 Students will use a word processor to list and print out their links.








 Students will present their findings to the class and discuss the merits of the various tools.









 Students will compare web-based tools with traditional print-based tools: how does scrolling compare with page turning? which tool is easier to use?









 Students will compare the attractiveness and ease of use of various research tools.








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