with the students that throughout this quarter they will be gathering information
from many sources about their assigned countries. Some of these sources
will be provided in social studies, science, and math. Others they will find
on their own, for example their current events articles. Each student will need
to keep all of these articles, notes on sources, etc. in a folder. As each new
source is added it is very important that the source is documented by the student
using the correct Modern Language Association (MLA) format. This documentation
is necessary so that others can go back and find the sources that the student
has used. This would be an appropriate time to talk about the dangers of plagiarism
and the benefits of utilizing other people’s bibliographies when doing
research. The student will also have the opportunity to comment on how valuable,
biased, and /or interesting the article or source was. This special type of bibliography
is called an annotated bibliography.
2. A suggested flow of this lesson would be to first practice putting some sources
into correct MLA format, reviewing how entries for various sources need to be
set up. Two great sites for downloading information on this are http://leo.stcloudstate.edu/acadwrite/annotated.html and http://www.library.arizona.edu/tutorials/citation/mla_exercise.html.
These sites are valuable because they also have information on the American Psychological
Association (APA) style of documenting sources as well as information on writing
annotated bibliographies. If you have time you may wish to just show the students
how the MLA and APA styles differ. By putting the article used in lesson #1 into
both MLA and APA styles it becomes evident that when a piece was published carries
more weight for the sciences which use the APA style.
Activity sheet #1 has sources, which need to be put into correct bibliographical
format. This may be used to reinforce skills learned in the third quarter when
the research paper.
Activity sheet #1 has the two sources that were used in the English and science
the first week. These need to be put into the correct MLA format.
If you used activity sheet #1 go over the answers for
this work with the students having them correct their
own papers in a different color
ink than the original work was done in. If the students only need a little
review of correct bibliographic formats (or after successfully completing
the work for activity sheet #1) then just use activity sheet #2, but
still have them correct their own papers in a different color ink than
the original work was done in. Correcting their own papers will give
them immediate feedback and will reinforce the correct formats as they
need to not just indicate that something is wrong, but they need to write
in the correct answers.
4. The point of this lesson is to learn how to annotate a bibliographic citation
so the majority of your focus needs to be on this aspect. Use the list provided
by the St. Cloud website to highlight how the annotation of a reference evaluates
for Writing an Annotated Bibliography
1. List the completed bibliographical citation.
2. Explain the main purpose of the work.
3. Briefly describe the content.
4. Indicate the possible audience for the work.
5. Evaluate the relevance of the information.
6. Note any special features.
7. Warn readers of any defect, weakness, or bias.
As the St. Cloud web site further states, “Annotations take different
forms, depending on the type of source and on the audience. Articles are often
argumentative; in these instances, the writer should incorporate the author's
position on the particular issue being addressed. The writer may choose to
include quotes and/ or references to individuals or to specific experiments
for emphasis.” With this in mind, ask the students to annotate the article
read in English for lesson #1 (“Africa Bites the Bullet on Genetically
Modified Food Aid”) and the website containing scientists’ opinions
examined in science class during the first week’s activities (“Controversies
Surrounding the Risks and Benefits of Genetically Modified Food” http://scope.educ.washington.edu/gmfood/
While we would hope that all published sources would
be accurate, detailed, well-researched, and objective,
that is sometimes not the case. The annotated
bibliography is an opportunity to point out the faults and/or strengths
of a source. The writing of an annotated bibliography will make the students
a more discerning audience. It also empowers them as readers who approach
each source critically. Students may find that certain sources are so
one-sided as to actually qualify as propaganda. And this concept ties
into lesson #3.
Students are involved in self evaluation
throughout the exercise.