As a follow up to today’s class, you might want to read What It Means to Ban Wikipedia. While the author focuses on Wikipedia in particular, the overall argument is more about the research process and how, in his view, it’s being undermined by instructors focused on the final outcome. It is directed at a higher ed audience, but I think the overall pedagogical ideas are applicable to all grade levels.

You might consider how research as traditionally been conducted in schools and how it is going to look in a 21st century classroom. Specifically, elementary teachers have traditionally had lessons where students were expected to “find information on…” and then use it in some way. What is often overlooked is the process of how they are supposed to do that. Can younger students conduct research on topics they have little to no background on? Also worth considering is the benefit of “looking stuff up” and repeating it. This isn’t a 21st century skill. So how can we meet the needs of younger students while still recognizing their current cognitive development?

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