You are on page 1of 36


Sarah Rehim
Multi-Genre Research Unit
TE 408 (Meritt)

Unit Overview: Outside The Box: A New Look at Culture,

Perspective and Research

This unit is intended to fall at the end of the student’s ninth

grade year. The overall, overarching theme of the year can be
summed up as “identity.” We’ve examined identity through a
number of different units and their correlating lenses. Most recently,
we finished the text The Absolutely True Diary Of A Part-Time
Indian, which anchored a unit on multicultural literature, dual and
dueling identities, and how we construct our personal, self-reflective
identities (i.e. “who are we to ourselves? why is this so?) The last
piece of the puzzle for the assumed curriculum is a research
project, which is intended to scaffold conceptually from the
multicultural literature unit.

This unit assumed that students have had little exposure to

research projects and assignments. They’re all coming from a
middle school setting which focuses primarily on literature
comprehension, as well as grammar and language acquisition. The
research project is typically given anywhere from the tenth through
twelfth grade years, with certain districts assigning them multiple
years. However, studies have shown that very little is done in the
classroom that gives students the procedural knowledge to inform
and guide the process of research collection and presentation for
students. This unit serves a twofold purpose; the first is to show

students new modes and methods of research and the second is to

assess what they have learned about research through guided
inquiries into their work and an eventual presentation of new
information gathered through research that answers specific,
student inquiry-based questions regarding a culture of their choice.

Over the course of the unit, multiple “multies” are utilized.

First and foremost, students’ multiple intelligences were
considered. Students in English classes cannot be expected to be
efficient reads and writers in only the most traditional academic
sense. Students have interests ranging from the social, political,
ethical and religious, and all of these unique spheres of their
identities combine to shape what they know, experience, and, more
importantly, what they want to know (their inquiries). Beyond that,
students have artistic, literary and technological talents that can
and should be brought into their classroom experiences in order to
create a more dialogic experience. This unit addresses the unique
challenge of how to do that, and how to involve students in the
learning processes of themselves and their peers.

Getting into the specifics of the multies considered in this

unit, one of the major components is multimedia literacy.
Specifically, students are called upon to join and maintain, as a
class, a Wikispace. This space both organizes the data students
collect over the course of their research and keeps the entire class
informed as to what everyone else is looking at and achieving. The
Wikispace, which is being treated as a new media tool for students,
is actually the anchor text of this unit. It is the piece that reigns in
all the other pedagogical processes together. Beyond that, students
are exposed to the World Wide Web and the plethora of different
genres it contains throughout this unit, including web clips on sites
such as YouTube, as well as official government and organization

websites. The assumption is that students are not seeing these

artifacts for the first time, but that possibly, for the first time, they
are beginning to think about them as texts and resources from
which natural inquiry springs. After all, they will have just spent an
entire unit (and really, an entire year) uncovering how these items
shape their identities. If these things shape what students already
know about their surrounding worlds and experiences, how can they
not shape what they desire to know?

Multimodal and multigenre studies, it should be noted,

are the glue holding this entire unit together. The underlying theme
students should be taking away from this unit is how audience and
purpose come together to shape the form of a product or
presentation. Assuming the different needs and expectations of
various audiences and rationales, students should come to discover
that there is no one magical genre, such as a thesis paper or film,
which suits every one. This is why we continue to search out new
genres through which to spread information; each functions in a
different way and should be given a different treatment. At the end
of this unit, students should have begun thinking about how the
“real-life” tools out there, such as the Internet and television,
comprise different genres that all do something. What they do, how
they do it, why they do it, and who they do it for are ideas
students should be considering, even if they are not aware they are
considering them.

This unit culminates in the presentation of a project that calls

on students to think about the multiple modes and genres they
have discovered over the prefacing weeks, and the cultures they
have studied in tandem with these. This summative assessment
asks them to gather the resources and data they have collected
and choose one mode or genre by which to present their findings.

Their decision should ultimately be informed by the F= A+P formula,

and students must clearly and thoughtfully rationalize their
selections. In fact, this “rationale” of sorts is one of the most
crucial elements of their presentations, and the project rubric will
reflect that.

Finally, it is necessary to note again that while the overall

purpose of this unit is to introduce students to the research
process, this cannot be done successfully outside of some sort of
context or lens. The context for this unit is culture and cultural
inquiry, and students will understand this unit, hopefully, as a
“cultural” unit rather than a “research” unit, although their work
will consist of research. Thus, there are two sets of conceptual
ideas behind the unit. One pertains directly to research, and the
other to inquiries into foreign cultures. However, these ideas will all
overlap throughout the unit.


This unit is put together for a 9

• grade General
Literature course in a mostly white, rural-suburban
district. The overarching theme throughout the course is
the idea of “Identity,” which will be explored through
several genres of texts.
• Lessons in this unit are designed around 50-minute class
periods, 5 days a week.
• This is a 20-day unit and is intended to occur at the
end of the school year.


• Representations of culture
• “New genres” as texts
• Visual representation
• Artistic representation
• Shifting perspectives

Conceptual Ideas, Set 1:

• Why do we research?
• How do new findings influence our perspectives and
ideas not only on our newly acquired knowledge, but on
what we learned prior to the research?
• How do we research? What does researching look like?
• How do we put together a final research presentation
that suits the questions we’re asking and the audience
we’re aiming to inform? (Form= Audience + Purpose)

Conceptual Ideas, Set 2:

• What elements of a culture separate it from other

cultures or groups (ideologies, practices, traditions,
customs, etc.)?
• How does examining these separate components
strengthen and inform our knowledge of the culture as a
• How does understanding foreign cultures (which is any
culture one does not personally consider oneself a part
of) shape and change our own perspectives and


• The student research project is an often obligatory

element of a high school ELA curriculum, and has
traditionally encompassed the final assessment of a
research paper. Success rates on these papers vary
slightly, but it has been determined by researchers that
one of the most influential factors in high school grade
retention rates is failure on the research paper. There
are likely many reasons for this, and some may be
unique to specific students, districts, and the
circumstances of both. However, much of the problem
may simply be due to student’s lack of knowledge on
how we research, why we research, and how research
can actually be interesting and though-provoking.

• At the ninth grade level, students may not across be

across the board prepared to take on writing a research
paper or completing a comprehensive research
assignment. Four weeks is an insufficient amount of
time to teach every aspect of researching and
presenting research findings. However, the duration is
lengthy enough to begin students’ thinking about
inquiry-based research and discovery, and to introduce
them, in a low-risk way, to some of the methods and
modes of the research genre.

• The inclusion of this unit immediately after the

multicultural literature unit is intended to scaffold the
knowledge and inquiries students gained while studying
new cultures and identities. It contextualizes their
research topic. The hope is that having them research a

topic with which they have some exposure and

familiarity makes the task less daunting and allowing
them to choose the specific culture they research
provides for an inquiry-driven experience.

Prior research in a 9
• grade classroom turned up the
result that of each of the 6+1 writing traits, voice is
the one which students struggle most with. The
heavy focus on F=A+P directly addresses this challenge
through the lens of research conducting.


• Students will be able to utilize a new online space, the

Wikispace, for organizational and team-working purposes
• Students will be able to think critically and purposefully
about how audience and purpose affect the form of
• Students will be able to break down a large task, such
as a research project, into smaller, more manageable
• Students will be able to see and articulate how good
research entails more than just books and internet
• Students will be able to differentiate between “good”
and “bad” sources for research
• Students will be able to better grasp how to find and
present research in an assortment of modes that are
influenced by their audience and purposes
• Students will be able to become participants in each
other’s and their own inquiries through discussion and

the Wikispace, rather than just turning in a research

paper that is solely between the teacher and the

• Students will come to an understanding about what
form of presentation best fits the audience and purpose
they wish to inform on the culture they’ve researched –
this understanding will inform their choice of mode or
genre for their final presentation
• Students’ inquiries into their culture will be driven and
guided by their research discoveries – that is, what they
learn as they go will shape what they want to know
from that point on
- essentially, their new inquiries will scaffold their
prior inquiries

Task Analysis:

• Students can navigate and log onto the Internet in

class. *This unit assumes there is at least one computer
with Internet access in class, but enough for every
student in the media center.
• Students can discuss open and freely the Internet
resources they use regularly in different areas of their
• Students can act maturely and responsibly when asked
to navigate the school in search of questions and
research (on Day 1).
• Students can act maturely and responsibly in the media
center while utilizing the computers and other sources.

• Students can regularly access the Internet outside of

school, either at home or another accessible location.
• Students can openly and honestly critique the work of
their peers, both inside and outside of class.
• Students are comfortable sharing personal presentations
in front of the class.
• Students are comfortable demonstrating their knowledge
of multimedia and technology in front of the class.
• Students have been exposed to various forms of
portfolios throughout the year (most recently the
multicultural literature unit portfolios), so the rationale
behind the Wikispace is not foreign to them

Michigan ELA Standards:

• CE 1.1: Understand and practice writing as a recursive

 1.1.1, 1.1.2, 1.1.3

• CE 1.2: Use writing, speaking, and visual expression for

personal understanding and growth
 1.2.2

• CE 1.3: Communicate in speech, writing, and multimedia

using content, form, voice, and style appropriate to the
audience and purpose (e.g. to reflect, persuade, inform,
analyze, entertain, inspire, etc.)
 1.3.1,1.3.2, 1.3.4, 1.3.5, 1.3.6, 1.3.7, 1.3.8, 1.3.9

• CE 1.4: Develop and use the tools and practices of

inquiry and research – generating, exploring, and
refining important questions; creating a hypothesis or
thesis; gathering and studying evidence; drawing and
composing a report
 1.4.1, 1.4.2, 1.4.3, 1.4.4, 1.4.5, 1.4.6, 1.4.7

• CE 1.5: Produce a variety of written, spoken, multigenre

and multimedia works, making conscious choices about
language, form, style, and/or visual representation for
each work (e.g. poetry, fiction and creative nonfiction
stories, academic and literary essays, proposals, memos,
manifestos, business letters, advertisements, prepared
speeches, group and dramatic performances, poetry
slams, and digital stories).
 1.5.2, 1.5.3, 1.5.4, 1.5.5

• CE 2.1: Develop critical reading, listening and viewing

 2.1.8, 2.1.10, 2.1.11

• CE 2.3: Develop as a reader, listener and viewer for

personal, social, and political purposes, through
independent and collaborative reading
 2.3.4, 2.3.6, 2.3.8

• CE 3.4: Examine mass media, film, series fiction, and

other texts from popular culture
 3.4.1, 3.4.2, 3.4.4

Summative Assessment:

• The summative assessment for this unit is two-fold. As

students progress through the unit, they will conduct
research into a number of different aspects of their
respective cultures, all in different modes and genres.
Their findings will be posted to their personal pages on
the class Wikispace every week. At the end of the unit,
students will be graded on their Wiki contributions. A
Wiki instructional/guideline sheet accompanies the unit.

• The second part of the summative assessment will be a

presentation of their findings using one of the modes or
genres examined in class OR another of their own
thinking, providing they have prior permission from the
teacher first. An assignment sheet and rubric for this
assessment accompanies the unit.

Unit Overview References:

• The elements of this conceptual unit overview are

derived from Peter Smagorinsky’s notion of “backward

 Smagorinsky, Peter. Teaching English By Design.

Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2008. chs. 8, 9, 11, 14

• The overarching concepts of students as active

participants in research and the benefits of research are

borrowed from Carlin Borsheim and Robert Petrone, as

well as Jim Burke.

 Borsheim, Carlin, and Robert Petrone. "Teaching

The Research Paper For Local Action." The English
Journal Mar. 2006: 78-83.

 Burke, Jim. The English Teacher’s Companion.

Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2008. chs. 10, 11, 12,

*Key Lesson 1: Day 1

Lesson: What Is Research? An Introduction

Underlying Questions:

• What is research?
• What are the research modes we have at our fingertips
• What will our cultural research unit look like for the next
few weeks?


• To get students thinking “outside the box” when it

comes to research modes
• To familiarize students with basic procedures behind
research (inquiring, asking questions, letting your
findings guide subsequent research, etc.)
• To introduce students to the basics of the unit and allow
them to ask questions and think about what they’d like
to research


• Studies have shown that students feel a closer tie to

research and inquiry if it is based in a surrounding
community or field of interest (Borsheim, Petrone). By
using the school community as a way of examining
available research modes and sources, students will feel

an deeper connection, and thus, and more authentic,

inquiry-based experience during their research
• An activity like this one, where students are moving
around the school in groups, is intended to get students
out of their chairs and put them in a “real-life”
investigative role. The intent is that hands-on,
interactive nature of the research activity will garner
more interest and enthusiasm among students.
• Lastly, by introducing and assigning proposals for
students to complete before they embark on their
research, they will be given an actual concrete,
published document that outlines their directions, goals,
and purposes. The proposal is intended to be a
document students looks back on throughout the
research process to keep them on task and remind
them of what they are setting out to achieve. (Marble)


• “Be a Researcher In Your Own School” handout answers

• Research Proposal completed for the following day
• Contributions to class discussions


• Students will be able to discover the research sources

that exist all around them
• Students will be able to begin questioning what research
is and why we research

• Students will be able to conduct themselves as

“investigative researchers” around their school,
conducting themselves maturely and with purpose
• Students will be able to examine and ask questions
about the upcoming unit and gain a greater
understanding oh what the next few weeks of class will
look like
• Students will be able to understand how proposals

MI Standards:

• 1.4.1; 1.4.2; 1.4.7


3 minutes: Attendance, housekeeping

5 minutes: Review; What is culture? How have we previously

defined “culture”? What else could we stand to know
about cultures? We will discuss these questions briefly
as a whole class. These concepts should be fresh in
students’ minds, as they’ve come right out of a
multicultural literature unit. This is just to recap what
they’ve learned and get them thinking again about
cultures, since this will be the topic of their research.

3 minutes: Transition: In School Research Activity (Anticipation

We will transition with students getting the activity
handout. We will go over the directions briefly, but not
explain much about why we are doing it yet. This is

meant to serve as an anticipation activity, which aims

at getting students to adjust their mindsets to our new
unit goals. Once students have the handout, they will be
broken into groups of four by counting off. Immediately
after, they will begin the activity. This activity is meant
to be less guided than most; the hope is that their lack
of specific guidelines and instruction leads to a more
inquiry-based experience of research

20 minutes: “Be a Researcher In Your Own School” activity;

students will comb the school searching for the
answer to one of the questions on the handout. They
will have only 20 minutes to see what they come up
with. At a specific time 20 minutes after they have been
dismissed, students will return to the classroom to share
and discuss their findings.

5 minutes: Discuss findings from activity; what did this activity

show us? We will discuss as a class what resources
students found to answer their questions and why these
resources worked. Students who could not sufficiently
answer their questions (or answer them at all) will be
expected to verbally hypothesize about why they were
unsuccessful and where they might have turned in order
to find what they were looking for

14 minutes: Go over Research Unit Overview handout and

Proposal handout. Students will now be informed as to
why we did this activity; we are entering a research
unit! The unit overview handouts will be distributed, and
gone over as a class. Students will have a chance to
ask questions about both the unit overall and the

proposal sheet. They will informed about possible times

to set up proposal conferences, and will complete the
proposal for homework.


• “Be A Researcher …” Handout

• Research Unit Overview Handout
• Proposal Handout
• Writing Utensils


• Borsheim, Carlin, and Robert Petrone. "Teaching The

Research Paper For Local Action." The English Journal
Mar. 2006: 78-83.

• Marble, Kathleen. Student Outlines/Proposals Idea.

DeWitt Public Schools. 2008

• Burke, Jim. The English Teacher’s Companion.

Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2008. chs. 10, 11, 12, 13

• Smagorinsky, Peter. Teaching English By Design.

Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2008. chs. 8, 9, 11, 14

*Key Lesson 2: Day 4


Lesson: Online Sources: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly

Underlying Questions:

• How can we tell what is a good site and what is a bad

site at first glance?
• What are some general traits of good sources?
• What are some general traits of bad sources?

• To assess how well students know good sources from
bad sources
• To show students what traits they should be looking for
in the online sources they come across in their research
• To inform students of why “bad” sources are bad and
how they skew research results


• With students having maximal, almost continual access

to the Internet, they are constantly being inundated with
various sorts of websites. These sites all serve various
purposes, but many should not be considered
“resources” for accurate research. Students may not be
able to tell the difference between a source that is
reliable and one that is not, but this skill is crucial for
accurate research.
• Prior to this lesson, there really hasn’t been much of an
opportunity to assess what students know about good
and bad sources. The overall assumption is that they
are not well-versed in differentiating between the two.

However, this lesson does call on students to use any

prior knowledge they may have to answer questions
about reliable sources. What they do know can help
inform their peers.


• Class discussion participation

• Wikipost containing “good” site and “bad” site links


• Students will be able to discuss their ideas on what

online sites are generally “good” and what are generally
• Students will be able to compose a list of traits, with
teacher guidance, that “good” and “bad” sites have in
• Students will be able to identify good and bad sites for
the purposes of their research

MI Standards:

• 1.4.4, 1.4.7, 2.2.1, 1.4.2


5 minutes: Attendance, housekeeping, settle in at the library

10 minutes: Students will participate in a class discussion about

what they know of different online sources. What types

and categories of websites are on the Internet? What do

we gain from each of them? Students will make a
mental list of the different sorts of websites they’ve
encountered (Review F= A+P)

15 minutes: On a computer synched up to an overheard, teacher

begins demonstration on how to find a good website.
Teacher asks a student at random who his or her
favorite music artist is. After student names artist,
teacher runs Google search on artist and finds official
website for the artist. What does the website look like?
What is its domain name ( What
kinds of information can be found on it (tour dates,
album information, officla biographies, etc.) Students are
asked to volunteer ways they know this is the “official”
website of the artist and thus, a good reliable website.
Following this, teacher goes back to search results and
find a “bad” website (i.e. fansite or blog) for the same
artist. Students will contribute what they notice about
this site that differs from the official site. The class will
discuss BIAS. Why does the fact that this is a fansite
make it unreliable critical source?

15 minutes: Independently, students will find one “good” resource

that informs one of the artifacts of their culture, and
one “bad” one. They will utilize the criteria the class
has established. Once they have found two sites, they
will post links and to them to their Wikipages, along
with justifications for the sites being either “good” or

5 minutes: Log off of computers; wrap up and leave library



• Computers
• Internet access
• Overheard for computer demonstration
• Wikispace


• “Internet Searching: The Good, The Bad, The Goofy, The

Spectacular .” Chicago Public Schools. 28 Apr 2009.

• Smagorinsky, Peter. Teaching English By Design.

Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2008. chs. 8, 9, 11, 14

*Key Lesson 3: Day 12

Lesson: Visual Representation of Cultures: How Are We Shaped?

Underlying Questions:

• What is the form, audience, and purpose of a given

visual representation, such as a photograph, drawing, or
• What do we learn from these representations? Do we
learn at all?
• If we learn from this genre, then how can we use it for
research? What can they tell us?

• To get students thinking about how visual

representations function
• To get students examining visual representations of their
research cultures as part of their research
• To introduce students to the idea of putting together a
photo story for their research presentations


• Students examine artwork in a variety of visual

mediums on a regular basis. Most of the time it is
subconscious. Society shows them pictures and
sculptures, for instance, of African-American culture and,
depending on the representation, we take away a
certain perspective from viewing the visual. A
photograph of a woman in lavish, traditional tribal dress,
for instance, is going to tell a different story than that

of a starving woman from a third-world country.

Students will learn begin to think through this lesson
about the functions of visual representations.
• The Lauren Greenfield “Girl Culture” photo story was
chosen for its connection to students’ lives and
interests. It provides a unique way for young women,
especially, in the class to see how they are constructed
in society and how these constructions shape their
actions and ideologies.
• At this point, most of students’ research has taken place
on a computer. This lesson should remind them again of
the types of research they can conduct which requires
no computer, no Internet, just their eyes and


• Small group discussion contribution

• F= A+P worksheet
• Wikipost reflection on activity


• Students will be able to demonstrate critical thought on

how visual representations suit their given audiences
and purposes
• Students will be able to discuss in groups their reactions
and thoughts to the Greenfield artifact
• Students will be able to complete the F=A+P worksheet
in a group, further reinforcing the principles behind the
formula and familiarizing themselves with the concept

• Students will be able to respond freely, without a given

prompt, to the Greenfield artifact

MI Standards:

• 1.2.1, 1.3.5, 1.3.7, 1.4.4, 2.1.10, 2.2.3, 3.1.7,

• 3.4.1, 3.4.2, 3.4.3, 3.4.4


5 minutes: Attendance, housekeeping

10 minutes: Students will listen to a brief lecture about how cultures

are represented visually. They will be asked to consider
genres such as photography, paintings, drawings,
comics, sculpture, and other visuals. This will be again
connected to the F=A+P formula.

6 minutes: Students will watch Lauren Greenfield’s photo story “Girl


15 minutes: Students will be broken into groups of 4 by numbering

off. In groups, they will discuss the repercussions of this
photo story. What was the message? Who was the
audience? What was the purpose? Students will discuss
whether or not they believe this photo story is an
accurate representation of “girl culture.” Each group will
briefly report back to the class with what they’ve

10 minutes: Back in their groups, students will complete a F= A+P

sheet for the Greenfield artifact. This sheet will be
turned in at the end of class. Teacher will go over the
instructions for the Wikipost reflection, to be done for
the next day.

4 minutes: Questions, wrap-up


• Computer
• Internet access
• The Lauren Greenfield photo story “Girl Culture”
• F= A+P sheets
• Writing utensils
• Chalkboard/ chalk (for notes during brief lecture)


• Greenfield, Lauren “Girl Culture.” (Photo Story). 24 Apr


• “Lauren Greenfield’s ‘Girl Culture’: Faculty Guide.” 24

Apr 2009

• Smagorinsky, Peter. Teaching English By Design.

Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2008. chs. 8, 9, 11, 14

*Day 1: Handout 1 (p1)


Welcome to the wonderful world of cultural research! We are about to begin a 4-

long introduction to cultural research as a way to wrap up this year’s ongoing
study of identities, culture, and perspectives. For this unit:

• You will CHOOSE A CULTURE which you would like to examine

over the next 4 weeks.
• You will examine THREE REQUIRED aspects (artifacts) of the
culture choose, plus ONE of your choice.
• You will ORGANIZE AND POST your findings and artifacts on a
class Wikispace as you progess. (We will discuss Wikispaces in
depth tomorrow).
• You will select as partner who will help guide and assist you
through the research process. However, you should note that
everyone will be turning in their own work.
• You will PRESENT your findings to the class through a RESEARCH

Over the next 4 weeks, you will be graded on TWO THINGS:

1.) Your Wikispace posts and artifacts.
2.) Your research presentation as a whole.

Each of these components is worth 50% of your total grade for this unit.

Each student will complete a Research Proposal Sheet regarding the culture they
would like to research. Before you begin researching, you MUST conduct a
conference with me regarding your choices. Conferences are to be done outside
of class, either during study hall, after school, or during lunch. You will sign-up
for a conference today.

Day 1: Handout 1, (p2)

You will be researching a total of FOUR aspects of your chosen culture. Each
aspect comprises an ARTIFACT of your research. The following three are
REQUIRED artifacts.
1.) Artifact 1: The history and traditions of your culture: how long has it
been around, what does it do to unify itself, how does it identify itself in
our community?
2.) Artifact 2: Interpretations of your culture: how do other cultures or
groups react to and identify your culture?
3.) Artifact 3: Adversity and your culture: how has your culture faced
adversity? Has it triumphed overall? How so or how not?
4.) Artifact 4: Your choice (to be cleared with me during proposal
conference). This will be presented during your research presentation.

Wikispace posts are done to keep your partners and peers afloat on what you’re
researching, as well as to keep your findings organized and in one place. Each
artifact you research will be posted and reflected on week by week. The
following is a rough schedule of assigned Wikiposts:

1.) WP1: A post about your topic and why you chose it
2.) WP2: One good and one bad website source
3.) WP3: A post about the fourth cultural artifact and why you chose it
4.) WP4: One organization with which your culture is affiliated
5.) WP5: One website that you could model your research presentation off
of, with reflection, plus Artifact 1
6.) WP6: Reflection to Lauren Greenfield photo exhibit
7.) WP7: Artifact 2
8.) WP8: Artifact 3

Work on final research presentations will be done in class and at home. We will
begin to work on putting presentations together in the third week of the unit.
More information will be given about the presentations as the due date draws

*Day 1: Handout 2


1.) What culture am I choosing to research?

2.) WHY am I choosing to research this culture? What does it mean to me?

3.) Who am I choosing to inform through my research (myself, my peers, my

teacher, etc)?

4.) What, if anything, do I already know about this culture?

5.) What do I hope to learn when my research has concluded?


Student Signature: x__________________________________________

Teacher Signature: x___________________________________________


Date of Proposal Conference: ____________________

*Day 1: Handout 3


Directions: Over the next few weeks, you will become aware of all new different
methods and sources for research. Research opportunities are everywhere, even
in your own school! In groups of 4, you will travel around the school looking for
different artifacts that TELL YOU SOMETHING. Pay attention to fliers, poster
boards, calendars, PEOPLE (teachers, students, the principal, etc.), the school
handbook, etc. Answer ONE of the following questions about the school.
Be prepared to discuss the following questions as a class:

What is a major extra-curricular event happening next year? When is it

How many students are in the senior class?
What is the procedure a parent must follow to excuse their ill son or daughter
from school?
What is for lunch in the cafeteria on Monday next week?

1.) Did you find any new or surprising research tools?

2.) Who did you talk to? Why were they helpful?

3.) What artifacts did you examine? Why were they helpful?

4.) Can you think of any other places or ways you could have gathered this

*Day 11, 12, 13, 15: Handout


1. What is the FORM of the genre or piece you examined today/this week?
Why is this form appropriate?

2. Who is the AUDIENCE for this genre or piece? Who does the creator or
author wish to inform? Why is the form appropriate for this audience? What
does this audience GAIN?

3. What is the PURPOSE for this or piece? Why has the creator or author
created this piece? How is the purpose met by the form the author chose?

*Day 16: Presentation Handout (p1)


Congratulations! Over the past 3 weeks, you have learned many of the ins and
outs of research. Hopefully, you have familiarized yourself with many different
methods (or modes) of research and a slew of different genres (websites, iMovies,
TV, film, visual representation). Over the past few weeks, you have acquired
information that has informed some of the answers for your three artifacts. Now,
you will put together a presentation of your findings that meets the audience and
purpose for you research. REVISIT YOUR RESEARCH PROPOSALS! Below is a
collection of the various genres you have encountered:

Wikispaces iVideo
Official Wesbites Online video clips
DIY Websites Film
Visual Representations Television
Advertisements Music

Choose one of the genres we have encountered in which to present your

research. Again, we will conference to go over your goals and expectations and
make sure everything makes sense. I urge you to be creative and have fun!
However, remember the two most important things about a good presentation: it
keeps its AUDIENCE and its PURPOSE in mind!

Some examples of presentations which would utilize these genres include:

• Making your own Wikispace dedicated to your culture

• Make a website using Weebly or another DIY site
• Create a slideshow of images depicting our culture (similar to
Lauren Greenfield’s)
• Make an iVideo with art and music that effectively depicts what
you’ve learned about your culture
• Create a soundtrack of songs that symbolizes your culture

*Day 16: Presentation Handout (p2)

You will have five days in school during why you can work on your
presentations in the library, including a day you will update your research
partner on your progress and be able to ask questions. Use your time wisely, both
at home and at school. It is expected that you will spend some time working on
these at home!


Monday, 5/25: Independent work in library (sign up for presentation date)

Tuesday, 5/26: Independent work in library
Wednesday, 5/27: Independent work in library
Thursday, 5/28: Citation lesson and independent work
Friday, 5/29: Partner Share
Monday, 6/2: Presentations begin



Day 16: Handout 2 (created at


CATEGORY Appropriateness of Form Appearance/Quality Knowledge/Content Presenter Preparation
25 points - Form completely suits - Presentation is -Presenter is well- -Presenter speaks
its intended audience and polished, clean, and versed in the clearly and fluidly,
their need/expectation well thought out. artifacts and speaks with confidence.
-Form completely meets Any art or fits knowledgeably Presentation keeps
the purpose of the media works about that. Research excellent flow, pace,
presentation perfectly. was clearly and style throughout.
Presentation is conducted.
completely pleasing Presenter can easily
to the senses answer questions
about topic.
18-25 points - Form essentially meets - Presentation is -Presenter is mostly -Presenter speaks
audience expectations, mostly polished, but well-versed on almost completely
but a better genre could could be neater or topic, but could clearly and fluidly.
have been chosen -Form better organized. have found more. Flow, pace, and style
almost entirely meets its Art media Research was are mostly good.
purpose, but could go functioning almost conducted, but
further perfectly. presenter doesn't
Presentation is speak with
mostly pleasing to complete
the senses. confidence on topic.
17-10 points - Form only minimally -Presentation is -Presenter is not -Presenter does not
meets audience needs only mildly or well versed in topic, speak very clearly or
and expectations; slightly polished, and seems fluidly (breaks and
audience may not fully but needs a lot of dependent on stops in presentation,
understand or appreciate work. Art or media presentation to volume too low, etc.)
presentation -Purpose is not well organized discuss topic. Pace, flow and style
met minimally by or not functioning Presenter has a need much
presentation properly. difficult time improvement,
Presentation only answering questions
slightly appealing. about topic.
Below 10 -Form is completely -Presentation -Presenter not at all -Presenter does not
points inappropriate for its appears to have versed in topic. speak clearly or
intended audience; they very little effort put Research was fluidly at all. Pace,
will not have any needs into appearance. Art clearly not done or flow, and style are
or expectations met or media not done very poorly. poor, making the
-Form is completely functioning at all. Presenter cannot presentation very
inappropriate for Presentiation not at answer any difficult to follow.
purpose; does not all appealing. questions about
accomplish it's goal topic.

Day 19: Handout


Directions: For each genre or source, find an online source that tells you how to
cite it. Describe how you would correctly cite each source for academic or
professional purposes. We will correct these sheets as a class. Be sure to keep
this as a reference for citation of your presentation sources!

1.) An official website:

2.) An episode or clip of a television show:

3.) A film:

4.) A song:

5.) A DIY website or blog: