What's After the Research Papers?

November 20, 2013

English 4

Research papers are finished in English 4, however, this year's class will experience writing an annotated bibliography.  An annotated bibliography is a summary and evaluation of each resource used in the paper.  The writer of the research paper looks at the credibility, the use of the information in the paper, and the quality of the information.  An annotated bibliography is approximately 150 words in length.  The students are learning a structure to use to write the annotated bibliography for one of the resources from the research paper.  English 4 students are also completing English grammar lessons each day using ACT Coach, a workbook designed to improve reading and grammar or English skills.  A book of the student's choice is read each day for about ten minutes, and the students complete a Daily Oral Language or DOL lesson each day to improve individual grammar, sentence structure, and writing skills.  If time permits before Christmas, the classes will read Night, Elie Wiesel's experience during the Holocaust.  The culminating semester project is our exams and the "About Me" PowerPoint presentations.  Each individual student is to prepare a PowerPoint telling about his/her family, favorites, and interests.  These presentations are designed to promote speaking, listening, writing, and technology skills.  The time requirement is four to five minutes.

            Some comments about the research process from English 4 students are as follows:

"I learned that sleep is very important and the amount of sleep you get affects your performance in everything you do throughout the day." -Johnny Romero-

"I learned a lot of things about my research topic, which was about the death penalty.  Also, interviewing Senator Wightman informed me a lot about my topic." -Keila Lozano-

"I learned the difference between works cited and works consulted.  I learned how to have subheadings." -Pascual Francisco-

"I learned how to make a graph with the results of my research and how to put it (graph) in my paper." -Gerardo Huezo-

"Something I learned was that sources don't always have to come from books and online." -Oscar Villatoro-

"One thing I learned from the research paper is doing an interview one-on-one." -Maday Salinas-

"I learned how to use subheadings in my paper." -Sandra Gomez-

"I learned how to make a questionnaire and how to view the feedback that I had received." -Patrick Spicer-

English 3

English 3 is currently beginning to read Arthur Miller's The Crucible about Salem, Massachusetts, and the Salem Witch Trials of 1692.  The class has already watched a trailer of the drama and will learn more about dramas in American literature, the Salem Witch Trials, and comparing and contrasting the written play and the interpretation of the written words by directors, actresses, and actors.  The class has recently finished twenty-five lessons in Timed Reading to improve reading comprehension, inference skills, and understanding the main idea of a passage among several other skills.  The class also does Daily Oral Language lessons and reads each day.  The students are working on a PowerPoint to persuade the audience to buy a particular car, support an activity at the high school, or possibly to live in Lexington, Nebraska.  The purpose of the PowerPoint is to develop speaking, listening, technology, and writing skills plus follow the structure of a persuasive argument.  These presentations will begin after Thanksgiving.  English 3 students have also finished a research paper.  Some comments on the paper are as follows:

"I've learned that to always turn in research items when they are due." -Diana Solis-

"I learned that waiting until the last minute to do the paper is a big mistake." -Josh Chavez-

"I learned how to correctly make an outline." -Samantha Cardenas-

College English I

College English I is completing Chapter III, the self-evaluation portion of the research project.  The student not only looks at his/her hypothesis, but all facets of the project and the effort put into completing this assignment outside of class.  (The instructions have been given in class but much of the homework is completing the assignments outside of class, as is done in college.)  Our next writing assignment is an argumentative paper from the research paper topic.  Beginning in December the students will present a five to seven minute PowerPoint to the class on the research project.  We continue to do the Daily Oral Language each day and work on lessons in ACT Coach as students prepare for the December ACT.  Some comments on the research project are as follows:

"I discovered many facts over the death penalty that I did not know about before; such as, the cost of one execution is over two million dollars, which is actually $800,00 more than having the inmate in life imprisonment." -Jessica De La Torre-

"Learned: Note cards are the most beneficial in the process of writing a paper." -Monica Myers-

"I learned how to conduct online surveys." -Luciano Ramirez-

            All of us learned a great deal during the course of the research papers and project.  Timing is everything, and procrastination hurts the chances to success.  Revisions of the papers are part of the portfolio assignment, so, hopefully, students will learn from their mistakes and have better papers next semester and next year.  Take care and have a Happy Thanksgiving.

-Mrs. Anderbery-