Think the days of allowing students to research topics of passion and interest are gone? No way! In fact, the high level skills of the Common Core State Standards make student-driven research more relevant than ever.

Imagine a classroom where all students are studying animals native to their state through an integrated science and social studies unit. All students are learning about food webs, state geography and climate, people’s impact on the environment, and their state’s natural history. Thomas is studying box turtles, Anna is investigating butterflies, Juan is exploring bears, and Ella is studying foxes. Each is at a different reading level and has different specific skills to practice, yet they all work together at the same table, reading books and websites, taking notes, sharing cool information, and asking questions.

This book offers a practical guide for structuring and managing complex and high level choice–work where students of all ability levels can thrive. You’ll learn how to structure and manage the physical environment needed for great research as well as how to set students up for independence in a research-ready classroom. You’ll also explore how to help students ask meaningful questions, create projects with purpose, and share their work in active and interactive presentations. There is also guidance provided about how to assess student work–a challenge when student learning is varied and diverse!

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