Introduction to the Big6


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  • Introduce selfDirect participants to wiki - that you were asked to present info on Big6. There are other models out there and DPI does not recommend one over another, but many schools use Big6. The Big6 is not just a research model but can be used for problem solving as well.
  • Just want to know more about who is in the room. Ask participants to share something about their summer and how they use research and/or problem solving in their classrooms.
  • Today we are going to provide you with a brief overview of the Big6 and Super3, as well as provide time for you to begin thinking of ways you implement school-wide.
  • Benefits – focus on common language as students move from class to class or grade level, streamlines the process, helps students become more information literate. Making the Standard Connection – Refer back to wikiReal-life Application – Discuss benefits you have seen personally with the use of a research model. Focus on stress of teaching research and how this simplified it all. Also, by making it school-wide it allows you to build on student skills.
  • Have participants break into groups.Here is an information problem that we might solve in our every day life. Talk with your table and list the steps of the process you would take to plan a vacation.Allow 3-5 minutes for discussion.*Have volunteers share the steps they take to complete these tasks.SAY: What you don’t know is that you probably used the Big6 Information Problem-Solving Model when completing these tasks. We will discuss these steps in more detail on the next few slides.
  • Sometimes this is teacher defined and sometimes student defined. Here students need to determine if they really understand what has been assigned. Questions they might ask include:What am I expected to do?What do I need to know about the topic?After students have determined the problem or task, they have to identify the information needed. One way to do this is to help them develop an essential question along with some supporting questions. These supporting questions should help them answer the essential question. This can help later with the note-taking process as students will know the exact information that they are looking for. For instance, I use to give students an example involving George Washington. Let’s say they have developed their essential and supporting questions. All of these questions focus on the military career of George Washington. So often students want to give us every detail about the topic. I always tell students that I don’t need to know those things like George Washington’s birthdate because it does not answer those questions. The development of theses questions will help students have a real focus on the information they really need. Let’s look at this from our vacation planning idea. What is our problem? What information do we need to solve our problem?
  • For Step 2 we want students to brainstorm all possible sources and then determine the best sources. Questions they might ask could include:Where can I start to look for information?What are the best sources to use?For our vacation would are some possible sources of information? (friends, AAA, internet)But given your preferences you might now want to take the advice of some of these sources. For instance, I hate camping, so taking the advice on vacation from some of my friends who love the outdoors is probably not the best plan. Based on that, I need to select the best sources of information.
  • Now that you have narrowed down your sources, it is time to locate and access those sources. Ask yourself where do you find them and the information located within. If I use a book on travel locations, I am going to use the index or table of contents to find the vacation spots that most interest me.Often Steps 2 and 3 are going to occur simultaneously because as a researcher I am going to assess where I am and what resources are readily available.
  • Step 4 is the point when students really begin to interact with the information. They need to take notes, evaluate resources, and make sure to cite their sources. These are all important skills that students need to know. In my experience, it is better to teach these separate from the research process. This way students see the application outside of research and don’t get overwhelmed with information.We also need to be good role models by citing our sources when creating lessons. What would we do at this point of our vacation planning?
  • Students take their information and create a final product. They must first organize the information and then present the final product. The final product can take many formats and it is important to sometimes allow students a choice over how they will convey the information. One way to do this would be to offer them a menu style project. I will show an example of this a little later. Now that you have done the hard work, it’s time to go on vacation. You have taken all your information, made decisions, and put it all together. You can now enjoy the fruits of your labor from a mountain top, on the beach or in the big city.
  • Evaluation is often the step that is left out of the research process, but it can be one of the most important parts of the process. This is the time when students can take a critical look at what they did and determine what they might do differently next time. This is just as much a part of the learning process as the other steps. With vacations, you always evaluate your trip. You take note of whether or not you enjoyed it, you ask yourself if you would visit the location again.
  • For younger children, the steps of the Big 6 are not really appropriate. While the concepts fit into the Super 3, the process is simplified as Plan, Do, Review. Now let’s go back to the wiki and look at some additional resources.
  • Introduction to the Big6

    1. 1. A Research and Problem-Solving Model
    2. 2. Learning About You  Name and Position  Share something you did or learned this summer.  How do you use research and problem- solving in your classroom?
    3. 3. Objectives  Gain an understanding of the Big6/Super3 Research Model  Develop a plan for implementing the Big6 school-wide
    4. 4. Why a Research Model?  Benefits  Making the Standards Connection  Real-life Application
    5. 5. Vacation  With your group, list the steps you take when planning a vacation.
    6. 6. Step 1: Task Definition  Define the problem  Identify information needed
    7. 7. Step 2: Information Seeking Strategies  Determine all possible sources  Select the best sources
    8. 8. Step 3: Location and Access  Locate sources (intellectually and physically)  Find information within sources
    9. 9. Step 4: Use of Information  Engage (e.g., read, hear, view, touch)  Extract relevant information
    10. 10. Step 5: Synthesis  Organize from multiple sources  Present the information
    11. 11. Step 6: Evaluation  Judge the product (effectiveness)  Judge the process (efficiency)
    12. 12. Super3  Plan (Beginning) 1. Task Definition 2. Information Seeking Strategies  Do (Middle) 1. Location and Access 2. Use of Information 3. Synthesis  Review (End) 1. Evaluation