Annotated Bibliography

Uni of Canberra – Academic Skills – What is an annotated bibliography?

  • Asselin, M. (2001). Grade 6 Research Process Instruction: an observation study. Alberta Journal of Educational Research, 47(2), 123-140.

Asselin is an assistant professor in the Department of Language and Literacy Education and her research interests include reading, literature education, and information literacy instruction. Being an older article, Asselin still provides important information for collaboration between teachers and teacher librarians on ‘the degree and types of constructivist teaching that occur when students are learning research process skills.’ She compares the scaffolding strategies of constructivist teachers and traditional teaching instruction during the research process. Asselin (2001) suggests using the findings from this study as ‘a starting point for ongoing investigations in explicit and systematic planning of students’ inquiry-based learning.’ In particular, for teacher librarians, she mentions the inquiry-based frameworks of Kuhlthau (1997), Garland (1995), McGregor (1999) and Stripling (1995).

Dr Bertolini presents this keynote for an audience of educators who are aware that students in the 21st century learn differently and he attempts to answer the Why? What? and How? questions that arise throughout this shift. He recommends Inquiry Based Learning (IBL) for the how? and presents an IBL case study (from Whitfield District Primary School) where the students participated in a project about ‘what to do with the polluted Jessie’s creek’ near the school. This PDF gives a great example of how an IBL project can have an impact on students learning based on a real world scenario. From the success of this project, the students presented their case study at a few educational conferences throughout 2008- 2009.

This Concept to Classroom website was the initial website I found from the “I’m Feeling Lucky” button on Google after searching for the term “inquiry based learning”. The website offers free workshops based around hot topics in education. This is a good source for a definition of inquiry based learning. Like Wikipedia, I would use this as a starting point but do not know enough about the authors to validate its reliability.

  • Edutopia – The George Lucas Educational Foundation (Ed.). (2012, January 11). Community Bulletin Board. Retrieved August 28, 2012, from Edutopia website: – discussion board about ‘inquiry based learning’ that lead me to Source #6

This Community Bulletin Board discussion around inquiry based learning lead me to Kath Murdoch’s (further down in this list) fabulous website. The group was discussing how many people used inquiry based learning as a regular teaching technique in their classroom and what activities the classroom participated in. A primary teacher Devon Kirk, recommended Kath Murdoch’s website and her book ‘Learning for themselves: pathways to independence in the classroom’.

I found Mandie Gardner’s wiki by chance in a search on inquiry based learning (IBL). She suggests a few links (see above) to sites about IBL and units of work based around guided inquiry. There are some good resources that have examples of how other teachers use IBL in their classrooms, as well as units of work from lower primary all the way up to high school.

  • Gordon, K. (n.d.). Inquiry Approaches in Primary Studies of Society and Environment Key Learning Area. In Education, Training and Curriculum Council (Comp.), Queensland School Curriculum Council (pp. 1-22).

Gordon who worked in Education, Training and Curriculum Services Queensland prepared this paper for the Queensland School Curriculum Council and discusses how to use inquiry approaches in primary SOSE. Three popular inquiry models are outlined including TELSTAR, Integrating Socially and Action Research, which are based around the Years 1 to 10 SOSE syllabus’ broad phases of inquiry. She suggests strategies to assist in the inquiry process, including asking questions and discussing and provides sample unit plans of how these inquiry models can scaffold teaching and learning.

This team from the University of Tasmania and the Tasmanian Institute of Agricultural Research conducted a three day environmental education event in 2003. The aim of the conference was to provide a forum where students could see that their concerns about river health issues (in the Murray-Darling Basin) was shared by other students. What I really liked about this event was that the pedagogy used throughout, was ‘Kids Teaching Kids’. Students created and designed workshops and presented them to the other students after participating in an IBL project based around tree planting and site rehabilitation at the Merbein Common, a floodplain area. This model was based around theorists such as Luke (2001) and Blythe (1998) who ‘place a strong emphasis on the need for teaching and learning in schools to be intellectually demanding and designed according to student-centred, constructivist principles with an emphasis on the development of higher order thinking skills, metacognition and self-directed approaches to learning’ (Lucas et al, 2004). This was a  great example of how successful IBL can be on students learning. In the GEST model (Lupton, 2008) this is definitively a transformative way of how the students interacted with information.

Kath Murdoch is an education consultant (with an amazing CV) from Melbourne and has made this website to share information and ideas about inquiry based teaching and learning.  What I found most helpful on this website was the wide range of resources she offers free of charge to print and use in the classroom for educational purposes. These resources will be put to good use throughout my own Information Learning Activity (ILA).

  • Scheffers, J. (2008). Trialling Guided Inquiry – A Primary Experience [PPT]. (with reference to Kuhlthau, C and Todd, R)

Jenny Scheffers is a Teacher Librarian from Caddies Creek Public School who partakes in cooperative teaching and trialled guided inquiry (GI) strategies within her lessons. She produced this powerpoint after attending a Syba Signs professional development day (I have attended Syba Signs seminars before which I thoroughly enjoyed) in which the students took part in a web quest based around the Australian Gold Rush period. What I liked the most about this project is that the activities were based around Kuhlthau’s ISP model and the students used the SLIM and Skinny Toolkit surveys to gather data. This activity was so successful that Scheffers decided to continue trailing the GI process in the following unit. This is a positive example of how GI can impact on student learning and emotions throughout the research process.

Tambyah works as a lecturer in the Faculty of Education (QUT) and has recently written papers on teaching both history and SOSE in the middle school, which are now significant in the context of the Australian National Curriculum. This paper specifically discusses how the skills of historical inquiry are now based around historical understanding not just focusing on content. She goes onto discuss the National History Curriculum rationale and how we (as teachers) now need to teach middle year students the skills of historical inquiry. This is where I believe inquiry based learning (IBL) projects can have a significant impact on students learning by encouraging them to develop and support their own opinion on historical (or whatever the topic may be) content by using a range of resources, weighing up and debating the evidence, developing empathy with the past, reading others points of view, as well as many more skills in which Tambyah explains in this paper.

  • Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority (Ed.). (2010). SOSE – Immigration Unit Destination? Australia! [Word DOC]

Although this Australian Immigration unit of work is based around Year 10 (I am working with a Year 6 class),  it will be useful to assist me with my Information Learning Activity (ILA) in that it has great focus questions, there is a tuning-in phase of inquiry, finding-out phase, sorting out, presentation and reflection phases throughout the unit. This is a good starting point with some great suggestions to lead me in the right direction throughout the inquiry process.

  • Walker, D. (2010). Real texts, real writing, real learning (teaching beyond what you did in the holidays). Practically Primary, 15(1), 28-30.

Walker and Griffiths (2010) discuss their 7 step inquiry framework that ‘provides an effective structure that enables teachers and students to ‘step out’ with confidence by developing a linked innovative model of learning using the environment to integrate literacy, art and information and communication technologies (ICT).’ They go on to provide ideas for implementation and show two examples of the framework in practice. This model was originally designed for Indigenous students but the authors have pointed out that it can be used in any teaching context. The model is based around the approach to learning that enables students to see the link between themselves and the environment. An important factor within the Australian National Curriculum (‘make it real’).

Blogs from CLN650 (2010-2011):

All of the above blogs from 2010-2011 CLN650 were a welcome surprise as they contained a lot of information to help me with the task at hand, writing this blog. So thank you to the above authors and what a great way to share resources (love the idea of having a blog as an assessment piece). I could have spent hours searching their links and listening to their screencasts but resisted and took on board what I felt was necessary at that point in time. These will continue to be used as useful sources not only for Blog Stage 1, but Blog Stage 2 and then afterwards throughout my teaching practice.


One Response to Annotated Bibliography

  1. ryanthor says:

    Some great resources here Prue, I might even have to use some for my posts in blog stage 2 🙂 I made the comment on Liz’s blog that it would be good if she could make the link clearer between the resources contents and the specific details of her ILA and I think this applies to your post as well…just a thought.

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