A good process produces good results. ~ Nick Saban
Today I gave back my 7th graders’ research projects, so they could share them with the class. They only got the project back, not the grades. The students worked on them in class for a few weeks beginning with brainstorming topics and narrowing their research questions. Then they started gathering information, learning how to take notes without committing plagiarism, and citing sources. Then writing commenced.
The finished product could take a variety of forms as long as it had the required number of pages of research/writing. There were brochures, books, posters, and a scuba diving video with voiceover. We all learned a great deal of information on topics such as surfing waves, Ancient Egyptian makeup, bananas, and Presidential perks.
I heard the kids commenting during the week, but I finally asked them today, “What was the best part of this project?” Here were some of their responses:
“that we go to learn a lot of new stuff.”
“that we could pick our own topics.”
“that we got to work on it in class.”
“that I finished!”
The kids were all very proud of their work, and most of them did well. It strengthens the argument for giving students more choice of what to write and more time to live like writers. This plan is a keeper.