When it came time to start working on the collaborative uses of Google Docs in the Lower School, instructional technology specialist Cindy Fordham and her team teaching partner, Lower School librarian Rhonda Zayas-Palmer, looked to introduce a collaborative research project as part of the Digital Citizenship curriculum they have introduced this year. Working with the 5th grade, Fordham and Zayas-Palmer posed the question “How can we use a collaborative writing tool like Google Docs to complete research?”

The answer, create two-member teams of 5th grade students who would complete a “Fact or Fiction: Keywords, Research & Digital Citizenship” project.

The project required the students to:

  • work collaboratively with a partner to locate their Fact or Fiction shared document
  • successfully edit the shared document by completing research that addressed the Fact or Fiction statement
  • document three “what my partner and I want to know more about” topics.
  • edit the document by finding answers to their questions using reliable sources.
Reliable sources included:
  • netTrekker
  • Winston Library Online Resources (Grolier and Worldbook)

Outcomes included:

  • students practicing keyword searching from our Digital Citizenship lesson – The Key to Keywords.
  • students understanding that this Fact or Fiction activity will automatically save and can be accessed from any computer.
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