Reflection: Student Led Inquiry Elizabethan Research, Day 1 (Developing a Research Question) - Section 2: Developing a Research Question


We all know that, in the "real" world, we only look up the things that we want to, or have to, know.  Some people are researchers by profession, but most of my students will not take that path.  It is our job, as teachers, to train students how to think critically about what they read, but I also want them to know how to figure something out by doing a little research.

The ideal research project, in my opinion, is one that answers a burning question that is keeping a student up at night.  However, I think it is safe to say that those questions don't usually fall within the structures of the English curriculum.  So, I try to encourage them to research something that interests them within the content area.   Take our current topic.  Surely there must be SOMETHING that you want to know about Elizabethan England?  Rotten meat?  Bear-baiting? Pestilence?

::Cue the crickets.::

Part of the problem is that we live in a time wherein you can "know" almost anything in seconds. One google search and you have an answer.  It may not be a good or accurate or comprehensive answer, but you have it.  You don't have to cull through dozens of sites.  And you don't have to think.  You really never even have to wonder about anything.

Could this all come back to a deficit of wonder?  How do we motivate student-led inquiry if no one ever wonders about anything?

Good question.



  Why research?
  Student Led Inquiry: Why research?
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Elizabethan Research, Day 1 (Developing a Research Question)

Unit 2: Romeo and Juliet
Lesson 4 of 12

Objective: SWBAT choose a topic and develop a research question related to Elizabethan England.

Big Idea: A good research question requires PRE-search.

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