Welcome to the Mediapprentice Blog. It is the online home of the Maple School LMC. My hope is that you will find excellent resource links for reading and research as well as informative posts.
My philosophy is that this is your LMC. This is your academic and reading playground. Your voice is important. Please comment and post your ideas and thoughts. If you choose, you may email me at email@example.com to input your ideas. Also, check out the Suggestion Box on the menu above.
For any research project remember these 6 steps:
- Define the information need. What is your assignment? Has the teacher defined your research topic for you or do you need to develop a topic yourself? If you need to develop the topic, make sure it is not too broad nor too narrow. We will work on that skill together. Begin to create your research outline in EasyBib listing curiosity questions about your topic, or, the required elements your teacher has assigned. Don’t forget to add a bullet where you can keep track of your keywords as you find them.
- Discover possible resources. What resources can you use to find information about your topic? You will need to use at least three types of resources but it is good to use more. Think outside the box. We know that books, websites, and online encyclopedias are good resources, but what else can you think of? Are there primary documents you could use? Could you interview someone? Is there a museum you could go to? Can you send away for a pamphlet? Don’t confine yourself to the same old resources just because they might be handier.
- Locate your resources and evaluate them. Gather your resources. We will work on search strategies together. When using the Internet, don’t forget to use the website evaluation tool that is in your assignment notebook. Remember, you need to evaluate every resource, not just websites.
- Draw out relevant information. Once you have gathered your resources, create your bibliography in EasyBib. As you take notes, connect each note to the source it comes from. This will help you return to the source in the future, if you need to. Also, when taking notes, put only one fact on a notecard. It’s okay if you end up with 200 notecards. The reason for this is that you can make your own connections between your facts easier if there is only one fact per notecard. As you find a common thread between your facts, group them together and/or add them to your outline. Reflect along the way: Are you answering your curiosity questions? Are there new directions your research should go? Do you need more information? Do you need more resources? Are you fulfilling the requirements from your teacher?
- Synthesize the information you have gathered – show what you know. Each of you is a fantastic individual. You bring your own unique experiences to everything you learn. When you think about the facts you have gathered and add your own perspective, you synthesize the information. Depending on your assignment and the audience, you will create a final project that shows what you know.
- Reflect on the research process.Take a moment to think back on your research. What went well along the way? What were your roadblocks? Did you find the answers you were looking for? Were you able to find helpful resources? Did you find any that weren’t helpful? Do you think this type of source could ever be helpful to you? If you could rewind and do this process all over, what would you do differently?
(Our research steps are based on a combination of the Big6 and IIM research models.)
WOW! I know I’ve said this before but it’s worth repeating — we have such talented students at Maple! November’s Open Mic was awesome and fun. Thank you to all of you that performed and to all of you that came to be the audience. I think the whole 6th grade class was here! The next Open Mic is this Thursday, December 5th.
By the looks of these pictures, things are shaping up into an AWESOME Open Mic year. Don’t forget to sign up in advance. The order of performers is based on the order you sign up.
One of our astute 6th graders suggested that we create an Open Mic sign up form here on the blog. If you go up to the Open Mic tab in the black menu bar above, you can pull down to the sign up form. Thank you, 6th grader, for a GREAT idea!
Common Sense Media just posted 11 Sites and Apps Kids are Heading to After Facebook. They list the Apps and sites the kids are flocking to and give the basics, such as what they are, why they’re popular, and the problems that can happen when they are not used responsibly. A must read.
Our fiction area has a brand new look! Cushy pods from Bed, Bath, & Beyond as well as nifty coffee tables from IKEA, coupled with the 10 bean bag chairs we already had, make this area a daily destination for many students and staff.
If you haven’t seen it yet, come check it out. For those over 30, Nancy and I can help you get up if you choose to sit down.
Our wonderful PTO will be hosting a book fair in the LMC October 9-11. Watch for the hours in the Maple Marquee. There are always great books at reasonable prices. They will be open during Parent/Teacher Conferences. Please stop in to chat and browse.
Welcome to this year’s parents and guardians! Please take a few minutes to orient yourself to the resources available on this blog. Also, let me know if you have a great site you like your kids to use that I don’t have listed. There is a Suggestion Box on the top menu for this purpose. If you need help logging in, call me and I will help you with that.
Parent/Teacher Conferences will soon be upon us. Please stop by the LMC to chat and also to make use of the Scholastic Book Fair that will be in full swing.
This summer I was able to attend the American Library Association (ALA) conference which was held in Chicago at McCormick Place. It was a huge gathering where they were giving away books, and all sorts of cool stuff. The magnet pens which you use to write the due date in your books came from the ALA conference.
One session I attended was about assessing student learning in the library. Every time I work with you, I want to make sure you are growing in knowledge and skills. It is important that you not only know how to use the library and the resources inside the walls of Maple, but it is equally important that you know how to use resources that are available to you online. My hope is to give you a deep understanding of our online catalog, subscription databases, choosing quality websites, primary and secondary sources, and also the research process which is a solid model for problem solving. I will show you tools and strategies to assist you in becoming global citizens but more immediately, competent middle school soon-to-be high school students that can take on any challenge. The session I attended on assessing your learning will help enrich your experience by giving me tools to make sure I am hitting the mark with the lessons I provide to you.
Mrs. Fosco’s and Ms. Sheridan’s classes will be coming for their first orientation visit next Wednesday and Thursday. We hope you have fun exploring all that the library has to offer you.
You will use a Padlet wall to keep track of what you find. Each class will need to connect to their block’s wall using the link below:
Mrs. Fosco’s A Block
Mrs. Fosco’s B Block
Mrs. Fosco’s C Block
Ms. Sheridan’s A Block
Ms. Sheridan’s B Block
Ms. Sheridan’s C Block
Computer Club will start this coming Tuesday, September 3rd after school in the LMC. We meet till 4:45 on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Come join us.