Questions for Researchers

My last post about rubrics raised some questions about how to teach kids to be solid researchers, so I started working up a list of questions that researchers ask themselves.

Most researchers are doing research in order to be better storytellers — their eye is on the final product, a book or article they intend to write. So these questions are built around that assumption, that the researcher is looking for information on how to build a more complete story that appeals to a wide audience.  Maybe this will inspire you to add to my list, and we can work up better ways to teach research skills to younger students.

  • Can I tell the difference between a true piece of information and a false one?
  • Can I tell the difference between a respected source of information and a minority opinion?
  • Can I tell when an internet source is lying to me?
  • What is the difference between content and context?
  • Can I place this event in its correct time?
  • Can I place this event on a globe or map?
  • What 2-3 other things happened before or after this event which might be relevant?
  • What 2-3 other things were going on in the world at the same time?
  • Who is my audience?
  • If I were telling this story, what sort of questions are people likely to ask me?

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