Wednesday, April 13, 2011

A Google A Day!

Google is promoting a new tool that educators can use to teach research skills.  A Google A Day provides an opportunity to search for the answer to a daily research question. Today's question is:
I like the keep it simple format and you can click to show the answer.  Don't cheat!  Try to get the answer yourself.  If you do give up and see how to get the answer, this is what you will find.  

How to find the answer: Search [country with twice as many sheep as people]. Various results show that the answer is Iceland. Next, search [ferry to Iceland]. The first result will give you the answer: Seyðisfjörður. To be totally sure, check the next several results, which all yield the same answer.

I like the fact that Google allows you to see the step by step process for solving the question.  I hear from many teachers that students don't know how to research and I am not sure how much we actually "teach" students to focus their searches.  So, I think this is a tool that is worth trying with middle and high school students.  The contest-like format should appeal to kids.

You can search the other daily questions by click on the dates at the bottom of the question window. 

Give it a try, model a solution with your students and share a comment on how it works.  Happy researching!

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