Scholarly Journal Articles in High School

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Print journals may be dead, but these articles are not!

Scholarly journal articles are long… Scholarly journal articles are filled with career-specific jargon… Scholarly journal articles are intimidating.

HOWEVER…

Scholarly journal articles are filled with findings from detail specific research… Scholarly journal articles have information which can support many additional research areas… Scholarly journal articles provide much deeper concepts to consider than popular magazines.

So, as high school teachers, we should:

  • direct students towards finding and using these articles
  • provide guidance to students in using them most effectively
  • reduce the superfluous effort students may put towards reading the article in its entirety
  • essentially, work towards keeping students from running away from these articles and help them begin to use the expert information within to support the inquiry process that they have designed, through their thesis statement and outlines.

Additionally, as high school teachers, we should recognize that certain field-specific scholarly journal articles are formatted in a more narrative way, while others are easier to use and deconstruct for students. At our school, we found this was true while our juniors were doing Truman research. We had chosen, within our research scope and sequence, to introduce students to scholarly journal articles in 11th grade. Where this was mainly happening was in the social studies class. The articles students were using were formatted in narrative designs. As a result, students were not seeing the formats that were easier to use.

So, we began to offer more guidance within junior English classes (where students were likely to receive article results that were written with section headings, etc.).  This graphic organizer was designed to help guide students in using the articles to determine what was and was not useful to them and their research (and not feel as if they have to read the article top to bottom)

Good luck introducing these to your students and helping them to use the articles effectively!

image citation:

Clede, Jonathan. “Scholarly Journal.” Flickr. Yahoo, 8 July 2006. Web. 6 Jan. 2016. <https://www.flickr.com/photos/duststorm/187826783&gt;.

 

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Locating and Using Statistics during Research (Screencast)

Our 8th grade students are conducting a research paper and are being asked to add statistics to their written paper.  I am supporting their project, but it is difficult to visit a different building within the district.  In order to instruct on this concept, I created a screencast.  It is always nice to do a screencast because you can embed the lesson on the webpage that houses the resources that students need to access to complete their project.

Here is the screencast:

Keyword Searching Global News by Region

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image courtesy of:  http://pixabay.com/p-158529/?no_redirect

As a librarian, I consistently encourage my students to seek various perspectives while researching.  While political, military, and religious perspectives are important, the most common perspective that they are likely to search is a differing cultural perspective.  It is so important that we, as citizens of the world, understand how we endure common plights and display similar human reactions.  It is also important that we understand that various regions are impacted uniquely, at times, as a result of culture, geography, faith, politics, etc.

So, I pushed up my sleeves and tried to help my students.  It was at that point that I found just how difficult it was to keyword search cultural regions.  I could find a newspaper for one country and search within, but it was hard to find a larger region to keyword search within.  I ended up creating Google Custom Search Engines to perform this task.  For each region, I am only allowed to identify 10 sites for the search engine to root through.  I tried to pick the most popular news sources for each region and I tried to spread out the coverage (I hope that I did an acceptable job) of news sources.

My favorite search has been with the keyword homework – my own views on homework can oscillate broadly as a busy sports mom and a teacher.  My second favorite search was with the keyword hunting.  I was helping a struggling student find supportive sites for his research topics and I took him into the Google Custom Search Engine and found that, in Africa, the bushmen are fighting for their rights to hunt and survive.  What an education it has been to search via these Google Custom Search Engines!

I hope that you and your students can use and enjoy the site.  I hope that many students are inspired to research varied cultural perspectives and that it broadens their knowledge of the world we live in.