Grades 5-8 Sidebar

Kuhlthau, Carol C., Leslie K. Maniotes and Ann K. Caspari. 2012. Guided Inquiry Design:
A Framework for Inquiry in Your School
Libraries Unlimited.
BCPS K-12 Research Grades 5-8 Research Guide Grades 5-8 Research Glossary

Guided Inquiry Process Evaluate Share Create Gather Open Identify Immerse open

Explore interesting ideas
Look around
Dip in
About the Explore phase:

In the Explore step we still haven't developed our individual inquiry questions, but we're getting a whole lot closer! Now we're going to get a chance to browse through a variety of information sources to explore interesting ideas. At this stage we're truly more interested in exploring ideas rather than gathering facts. We're not worried about citing sources or notes just yet.  We want to dip into a few sources and try to make sense of what we are reading and seeing. We want time to look at a variety of sources on a broad topic so that we can each form a personal understanding, and prepare to identify a specific topic for further research.

Skills and Tools Skills
Exploring the information landscape

Generating questions

Skimming and scanning

Making inferences

Summarizing information

Distinguishing between facts and opinions

Organizing information
Teaching Resources:

Teacher's Guide to the EXPLORE Step

Example EXPLORE Session Plan | Model EXPLORE Session Plan | Session plan template
Guided Inquiry Design: A Framework for Inquiry in Your School (Book available in all BCPS Middle School Libraries)

About Inquiry Logs: The Inquiry Log is a simple but useful tool. You will see the benefit for students as they track their journey and the choices they make. It is also beneficial for the learning to monitor at a glance how students are making choices about their information use. Inquiry logs are introduced in Explore as a tool for keeping track of the students' choices of sources in the inquiry process. The students log sources that they think are useful or may be useful. As they find sources in those two categories, students record the date ,citation of source, and thoughts they have a they browse and dip in. In the thoughts column of the journal, students write a personal note, a brief comment, or a question about what is interesting. Thoughts should be a short, quick entry that is easy to refer to later.

About Inquiry Journal Prompts: In the explore phase, the Inquiry Journal is used for jotting down ideas from sources of information. Inquiry journals become a list of questions, facts, and ideas that occur to students as they work through the Explore phase. The inquiry journal is a tool for formulating thoughts that lead to developing a meaningful inquiry question. The journal continues to be used to prepare for conversation in the inquiry circles that help students make decisions about questions for investigation. Inquiry journals are used for reflecting after dip-in reading. Students are guided to use the journal for a 'recall, summarize, paraphrase, and extend exercise,' that is an exercise that leads to developing an inquiry question.

Skimming and Scanning Lesson Plan

BCPS Digital Content Snapshots and Support Resources