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Writing A Bibliography Lesson Plan


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From Theory to Practice



Children are naturally curious—they want to know "how" and "why." Teaching research skills can help students find answers for themselves. This lesson is taken from a research skills unit where the students complete a written report on a state symbol. Here, students learn the importance of citing their sources to give credit to the authors of their information as well as learn about plagiarism. They explore a Website about plagiarism to learn the when and where of citing sources as well as times when citing sources is not necessary. They look at examples of acceptable and unacceptable paraphrasing. Finally, students practice citing sources and creating a bibliography.

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Avoiding Plagiarism: This resource from Purdue OWL gives comprehensive advice about how to avoid plagiarism.

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Teaching the process and application of research should be an ongoing part of all school curricula. It is important that research components are taught all through the year, beginning on the first day of school. Dreher et al. explain that "[S]tudents need to learn creative and multifaceted approaches to research and inquiry. The ability to identify good topics, to gather information, and to evaluate, assemble, and interpret findings from among the many general and specialized information sources now available to them is one of the most vital skills that students can acquire" (39).

Further Reading

Dreher, Jean, et al. 2000. Easy Steps to Writing Fantastic Research Reports (Grades 3-6). New York: Scholastic Professional Books.


DeSena, Laura Hennessey.  2007. Preventing Plagiarism: Tips and Techniques. (Chapter 2). Urbana, IL:  NCTE.

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 Your name: Mary KellyCooperating teacher-librarian: Linda DiekmanDate: February 20, 2012 School & City: GlenviewLesson Title: Evaluation BibliographiesGrade level: 5


Grade Length of lesson: 2-60 minutesPurpose:

As the fifth graders at Glen Grove are wrapping up their Revolutionary War paper, I willinstruct them on the correct format for a MLA bibliography.

Learning Outcome(s):

Students will learn how to create a bibliography for their Revolutionary War research papers and how to correctly format their bibliography. They will also have anopportunity to evaluate a peer’s bibliography for correct formatting, currency and authoritativesources.

StandardsCommon Core Standards for Math and English:

CC.5.W.7 Research to Build and Present Knowledge: Conduct short research projects that use several sources tobuild knowledge through investigation of different aspects of a topic.

Illinois Learning Standard(s)


5.B.4b Use multiple sources and multiple formats; cite according to standard style manuals.

Standards for 21


Century Learner Addressed:

1.3.1 Respect copyright/intellectual property rights of creators and producers


1.3.3 Follow ethical and legal guidelines in gathering and using information.

Materials:Needed by you:Needed by students:

ComputercomputerDocument camerapencilsExample of incorrect bibliography bibliography sheetsEvaluating bibliography worksheet

Instructional procedures:Focusing event:

“Over the next two days, we will have to opportunity to complete thebibliography that you have to include in your Revolutionary War paper.”

Input from you:

During the first lesson, we will discuss why you need to create abibliography. I will give a brief introduction to MLA citation style and discuss the importanceof correctly formatting a bibliography. I will also discuss the rubric by which theirbibliography will be graded. Students will understand that they have to correctly formattheir bibliographies, their sources should be reliable and authoritative, and that theinformation they use should be current (within ten years). I will define authoritative anddiscuss what makes a source or author reliable. I will introduce the students to the and explain that they will transfer the information from the


1/18/11G. Burch