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Bug Study: Research

In the spirit of documenting activities in my classroom, I will be posting this week about the Bug Study we did at the end of the year.  
Our first week was Research.  The idea of "little researchers" is very intriguing to me.  I did a similar project last year on Arctic Animals, but this year I tweaked it a little. 

When beginning the research process, we talked a lot about research.  What it is, who does it, how it's done.  The kids poured through books on insects and other buggy things. 

Finally, they each chose a bug to research.  We had a group of boys obsessed with stag beetles, little girls happily drawing ladybugs, and one boy finding out a lot about worms.

Along with this, went lots of drawing bugs and recording information in a spiral notebook.  I found that giving each kid a notebook like this helped them to focus, organize, and feel like a real researcher.
Next, it was time to fill out the research page.  This was a sheet of paper divided into 4 sections and reads similar to a KWL chart.  Remember, research for kindergarteners is a loose concept!
They were: 
*My Bug - the name and a quick drawing
*What I Know - 3 things they already knew about the bug
*Question/Answer - this is where they asked a question about something they wanted to know and then wrote the answer once we "researched" it.  To find our answers we looked through books and the internet.  We did this one-on-one with the kids and they loved helping to find the answers to their questions.
*Why I Like It - I tried to get them to really think about what attracted them to the insect. 
Next, we transferred the research page into a book.  To help, each page had a sentence starter such as "My bug is..." and "I learned..."
The covers for the book were drawn with Flair pens then watercolored - a favorite technique.
Finally, we published the books.  The kids love, love helping me spiral bind the books.  If you don't have a machine like this, you can put it in a brad folder or find others ways to bind them.  For some reason, I didn't get a picture of the finished product or of the kids reading them to everyone in sight, but they turned out great. 

This research method could easily be adapted to other areas of study.  In fact, I'll probably be doing that next year. 

2 comments:

sherbear said...

I wish i could go to your classes :)
And my kids too.

Amie Plumley said...

Thanks, Sherbear! Stop by anytime!