We are so excited to be joining Jasmine McClain over at Buzzing with Mrs. McClain for another You Oughta Know Blog Hop. Be sure to check out her blog, it is ADORABLE!!!
Our You Oughta Know post is all about Information Investigators. Information Investigators is an exciting and engaging process that allows students to examine a variety of materials using higher-level thinking skills to answer essential questions based on science and social studies standards in a collaborative environment.
This process has been extremely successful in our classrooms because it makes the connection between reading strategies and skills found in the Common Core State Standards with reading informational texts including charts, graphs, photographs, etc. Students are provided with an engaging opportunity that encourages them to persevere with grit and enthusiasm.
We begin by presenting an essential question embedded in a real-world situation. Below is an example of an essential question and real-world situation.
Our kiddos love the idea of having a job! They take their job very seriously. You can see that this essential question requires the students to first determine what a behavioral and structural adaptation is and then what types of adaptations rabbits have.
Students, in groups of 4, are then given a box of "exhibits" which consists of photographs, informational texts, articles, as well as links to various websites, videos, and songs that all provide information surrounding the essential question.
Students view themselves as investigators who must sift through the information provided in order to identify valuable information and they record the information in a research pamphlet. The pamphlet can look any way you want. It might be a foldable, lapbook, or simply a small booklet. Below are some photos of the pamphlet sections we created for our kiddos.
|One important part of Information Investigators is giving students an opportunity to reflect on their learning.|
|This showcases the job description (essential question) as well as the Science and Reading goals. The second portion is where kids record their answer to the essential question independently.|
|This part of the pamphlet changes depending on the reading standard. This is where the kiddos work with their group to record information they feel is important to answering the essential question.|
|This is a portion of our pamphlet that we added over time. Students are able to extend and apply their new knowledge to another question as well as record some questions that have come up as they were researching.|
We try to plan an Information Investigators for each unit of study. Sometimes we begin the unit with the activity to give students prior knowledge on the topic. However, sometimes the concept is too challenging to start with and requires some direct instruction before beginning Information Investigators. Finally, there are units where we use Information Investigators as a review or final activity in a unit. It all depends on the concept that is covered.
If you are interested in creating your own Information Investigators, check out this freebie in our store that will walk you through step-by-step.
Be sure to follow us at Two Nuts Teachin' from the Same Tree so you will be notified when we add Information Investigator kits to our store. This is the first in a series of blog posts about Information Investigators, so check back soon or follow our blog to be notified when a new post is up!