When students enter the room today, we do a quick check in. I have students raise their hands if they have all the information for their first paragraph, second paragraph, third paragraph and fourth paragraph if they have one. It is important to do this check in before I dismiss them to their research so I can see how far along the students are in their research. How many more days do they need? It seems that a fair number of them did some research at home, so we rinse and repeat yesterday's farming out of students to my team teachers' computers.
I keep my same small group from yesterday so I can continue to help them through the troubles they have. This small group is made up of the students who have very little experience with computers. You know who they are- the ones that can't access the Internet, turn the computer on, etc. I keep these kiddos close because they are required to do the research and I don't want their technology novice to hold them back.
My teammates are close enough to my classroom, that I can make rounds to check on my students as they complete their research and answer any questions they have. I don't want them to interrupt the classes going on, so I am careful to keep a close eye out on them.
All the students- including my small group- spend the majority of the class time completing their fact finding mission. They work until it's time to call them back together.
When I gather the students back together, I do yet another check in to make sure they are all on track to complete their research. The students with computers tell me they can finish at home for homework. The students without computers will continue to work at recess until they finish up. Today will be the last day of research and tomorrow, I tell them, will be the first day of actual writing.