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Puzzles, not Pieces: Smart Searching (Day 3 of 5)

Main Core Tie

Secondary Library Media (6-12)
Strand 2: Standard 1:

Additional Core Ties

English Language Arts Grade 11-12
Writing Standard 8

Time Frame

3 class periods of 90 minutes each

Life Skills

Thinking & Reasoning


Catherine Bates
Michelle Miles


This is day three of a five day unit teaching students strong research skills for a "white paper" style research paper (can be modified for any pro­con research assignment). For the purpose of this assignment, the white paper is an argumentative piece which introduces a problem and argues a solution to that problem. In this team­taught lesson, students will continue to learn that researching is not a linear process. Students will learn to adjust their topic based on what information is available (with their pre­search). Focus will be on finding good search terms and thinking outside of the box to gather evidence.


This lesson requires computers or tablets for students to access UEN library resources. Librarian Teachers should have a computer and projector as well.

Background for Teachers

Supplementary materials attached.

Student Prior Knowledge

This lesson will build on prior knowledge from the first two days of the unit.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Students will continue searching their topic.

Instructional Procedures

Pacing Instructional Sequence Grouping Structure

Search Terms:
Come up with 10 search terms on your proposed topic.

5 - 10

Model branching out with your search to include parallel concepts in related areas that will help support an innovative problem solution.

Practice as a class with a topic.

Whole Group (Librarian)

Teacher will introduce "puzzles not pieces" concept for the first of many many times: our job as writers is not to give readers just one piece (i.e. one magical source that proves their point); instead, we need to piece together all of the research to present our readers with the completed puzzle.

Smart Search Worksheet, teacher and librarian review topic proposals and return them to students while class works on worksheet.

Individual (teacher)
45 ­- 50

Task Sheet ­­ Start Researching

Teacher will review the 8 tasks students will need to complete in order to have a well­developed white paper. This task sheet is a guide for students to help them identify what information they need to find in their research process.

The remainder of class will be used for students to begin researching. The tasklist will help them further identify where to begin this process.

The librarian and teacher will walk around and assist students.


Assessment Plan

The Librarian and teacher will informally assess student understanding as they work with students for the last half of class.

Created: 05/12/2017
Updated: 02/05/2018