Free Access to the Financial Times

Screen Shot of the Financial Times website on Tuesday January 16th 10:05 am JST.

Congratulations! The Financial Times has granted free access to its publication for YIS staff and students aged 16-19. While on campus, anyone can access it using our network; however, if you’d like to access it off campus, just sign up for a free account using this link.

This will give you access to the FT from anywhere, allow you to download and use the FT app and other tools. You’ll also receive a weekly email containing content and classroom ideas recommended by teachers and FT editors.

Researching Baroque Music

Giovanni Paolo Panini [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Reading about Baroque period musical instruments

Grade 8 Music is currently researching the Baroque period of music, which, according to Encyclopaedia Britannica, was “one of the most dramatic turning points in the history of music” when it began in Italy in 1600.

Need resources for this? Visit our Grade 8 Baroque Music LibGuide. There are library books, tutorials for Encyclopaedia Britannica and Oxford Music Online, resources for citations and paraphrasing and more.

Oxford Music Online is an outstanding resource for music related research. Learn more about how to navigate it by watching this 8 minute tutorial.

“Baroque music.” Britannica School, Encyclopædia Britannica, 19 Aug. 2016. Accessed 20 Feb. 2017.

New Research Resource: Churchill Archive

The YIS library has added a new research resource, one which I&S and History students will find particularly useful: the Churchill Archive. As described on the Churchill Archive’s about page,

Published in October 2012 by Bloomsbury Publishing in collaboration with the Churchill Archives Centre, the Churchill Archive is a digital library of modern international history. It includes more than 800,000 pages of original documents, produced between 1874 and 1965, ranging from Winston S. Churchill’s personal correspondence to his official exchanges with kings, presidents, politicians, and military leaders. This is more than a fantastic collection of primary source material; it is a unique online resource offering new insight into a fascinating period of our past.

While on the school network, students can freely access the Churchill Archive without logging in. If you want to use this resource at home, visit the library research portal for the username and password.

Interested? Take ten minutes to watch the tour so you can get the most out of this excellent digital library.

Notice you can register for a MyArchive account, a personalised account within the Archive which will allow you to save your searches and favourite documents. To create an account, you should be logged in to the Churchill Archive, then visit the Sign-in page where you will see a link at the bottom of the page to register for a My Archive account.

Happy Researching!

Cite it Right!

Why do we cite?

As exhibition approaches, Grade 5 has been continuing to develop their research skills in preparation for their independent inquiry project. This week the Grade 5 students were introduced to creating bibliographies in MLA style. We discussed why how we cite before practicing making citations for new books about science experiments.

Where can we find information for our citations?

After they understood the philosophy behind citation and practiced making citations by hand, the students were introduced to RefME, a powerful citation tool new to the YIS community. Anyone with a YIS email can create an account with RefME.  Watch this space for more information about RefME as we roll it out over the next few weeks.

Want to learn a little more about how to cite your sources according to the 8th edition of MLA? Check out our Grade 5 Citation Guide.

Research RoundUp – 2016

Research :Mediterranean Center of Medical Sciences under CC BY 2.0
Research :Mediterranean Center of Medical Sciences under CC BY 2.0

Research RoundUp – 2016

“Research is formalized curiosity. It is poking and prying with a purpose. It is a seeking that he who wishes may know the cosmic secrets of the world and they that dwell therein.”

Zora Neale Hurston, “Dust Tracks on a Road”

Lately in the Library – This section includes recent research lessons that involved the library, whether through direct instruction or collaboration

Thank you to everyone who has been involved in the conversations about research during this first half of the school year. Each “Lately in the Library” section of the Research RoundUp will include an update about recent research lessons that involved the library in some way, whether through direct instruction or collaboration. This post highlights, amongst other work, some of the collaboration with the library and Grade 7 I&S and Science.

Grade Level & Subject Research Skill Resource
7 – Science Step 1 – Task Definition: Students establish clear and focused inquiry / research questions within a determined topic Mining for Mobiles notetaking sheet
Modeling it off of the Influence notetaking sheet the students had used in another unit,  Grade 7 developed this notetaking sheet as a class, creating the inquiry and research questions off of the task sheet.
7 – I&S Step 3 – Location & Access: With support and scaffolding, students can select and navigate age-appropriate general library resources (databases, encyclopedias, catalogs, etc) to locate specific information sources. Encyclopaedia Britannica Tutorials
Students watched tutorials on how to use Encyclopeadia Britannica effectively and discussed helpful tools and features before starting their background research. There was a strong emphasis on EB’s usefulness in the early stages of research, developing effective keywords and search terms, and using the available tools.
7 – Science Step 3 – Location & Access: With support and scaffolding, students can evaluate sources for currency, relevancy, authority, accuracy and purpose CRAAP. CRAAP Test
Fake Websites
Evaluating & comparing Web resources
Students were introduced to the CRAAP method of evaluation, used it to determine whether websites were fake or authentic and then analyzed resources they found for their inquiry.  
7 – I&S and Science Step 4 – Use of Information: Students take notes with the appropriate MLA citation information. Influence Presentation Sheet
Mining for Mobiles notetaking sheet
Each of these notetaking sheets contain an explicit place for students to record from where they got the information.
7 – I&S Step 5 – Synthesis: Students will use signal phrases to indicate the origin of their research. Grade 6-8 MLA Citation Quick Guide
Signal Phrase Bingo


New Resources – This section features resources to support student research, developed collaboratively between librarians and classroom teachers.


Grade Level Research Skill Resource
4 – STP 1. Task Definition

Provide outline of task definition; Define the information problem; Identify information needed

Tips for Generating Keywords
4 – STP 2. Information Seeking Strategies

Students are able to determine all possible sources and select the best sources.

Choosing the Best Electronic Resource for Me (PebbleGo, Ducksters, EB)
Electronic Resource Evaluation Tool
4 – STP 3. Location and access

Students are able to locate sources and perform an evaluation of possible sources.

Using Keywords to Read NonFiction Texts
4 – STP 3. Location and access

Students are able to locate sources and perform an evaluation of possible sources.

Exploring Encyclopaedia Britannica
5 – HTWW 3. Location and access

Students are able to locate sources and perform an evaluation of possible sources.

Take it A.P.A.R.T.


Spotlight On – This section highlights research resources developed independently by classroom teachers.

Grade Level & Teacher Research Skill Resource
Weekes & Nanwani – Grades 3 & 5 1. Task Definition

Provide outline of task definition; Define the information problem; Identify information needed
2. Information Seeking Strategies

Students are able to determine all possible sources and select the best sources.

Planning my Research – Julian created a resource template for Grade 5 students to plan/track their research resources, and Sangeeta modified it for Grade 3. I recommend using this as a planning document to help students direct their research, not as a mandatory checklist for required types of resources.
Weekes – Grade 5 1. Task Definition

Provide outline of task definition; Define the information problem; Identify information needed

Inquiry Questions through key Concepts – Julian created a template for students to brainstorm inquiry questions through the lens of the PYP key concepts. Great way to get students thinking about what they need to know!

Do you have any resources you’ve found or created to support student research? Please share them on
this form so we can start a bank of resources.

Research about Research – This section includes research on best practices for teaching research skills to elementary and/or secondary students.

Using Inquiry Based Instruction to Teach Research Methods to 4th Grade Students in an Urban Setting
– The findings and discussion section of this article (last two pages) will be most interesting to YIS teachers.

Grade 10: Edo Period Research

Today we will be working on exploratory research for your historical investigation on the Edo period of Japan. Effective researchers use a variety of academic sources in their research. To start, you can use Wikipedia for academic research, but maybe not in the way that you think. Watch this video to see how Wikipedia can be your trampoline into databases and digital libraries.

Now that you’ve developed a list of search terms, keywords, people and dates, it’s time to dive into the real academic resources. Do you know NOTHING about your topic beyond the quickie Wiki overview? Get background information on your topic by searching Encyclopaedia Britannica. (The first two minutes are most relevant to you. After that it gets kind of promotion-y.) You can access Encyclopaedia Britannica by going to our new YIS Library Research Portal. Get the password from your librarian.

Once you’ve got a basic understanding of your topic, it’s time to research using more sophisticated academic tools. Watch the tutorials and complete the “scavenger hunt” for these resources.

After this session, your class is going to be well prepared for next weeks’ field trip. Share something you learned today on our Padlets:

Interesting Edo Research padlet – Group 1

Interesting Edo research padlet – Group 2

Please fill out this short survey on today’s session.

Extended Essay: Planning your research

Using the Big6 research model to frame and plan your research will lead to a more successful Extended Essay, particularly when it’s time to write your rough draft. This EE session will focus on the first two steps and touch on the third step.

Task Definition

Screen Shot 2016-02-28 at 9.54.47 AMIt’s essential to start your research by identifying your information problem and determining the information you’ll need to solve that problem. Start by completing the Task Definition sheet. Still between topics? Fill out two!

Have you read a sample essay yet? Visit the YIS EE Libguide and read a sample paper now. Seeing how others used information will help you determine what you need to know. Mine their bibliographies and see what kind of information successful EEs in your subject area cited.

Information Seeking Strategies

Screen Shot 2016-02-28 at 9.57.39 AMOnce you’ve determined what kind of information you need, now you have to figure out the absolute best possible sources to get that information. Dream big! Think of all the possibilities if there were no geographical or financial constrictions. Then brainstorm alternatives for sources that just can’t be accessed.

Start by filling out the YIS Research Planner. Think as broadly as possible. Aim for expert. Aim for variety. You will narrow down later, but it’s best to start broadly.

It’s great to start with Wikipedia as a trampoline into other resources. Step 2 is good time to review relevant Wikipedia articles for academic research, but remember you can’t use them on your bibliography. You need to be looking at authoritative, reliable resources. Make sure you evaluate all of your resources using the CRAAP method.

Location and Access

Screen Shot 2016-02-28 at 9.39.12 AMNow that you’ve figured out which resources will be your best resources, it’s time to actually get your hands on them. This means two things:

1. Starting an Annotated Bibliography

It is essential you keep an organized list of your resources, preferably in MLA format, as you conduct your research. Updating an annotated MLA bibliography as you research will ensure you never lose a source, have a snapshot of your research at all times, and are ready to cite any resource when you begin writing your paper. Each resource should include a full MLA citation followed by a paragraph, summarizing the content of the resource, evaluating the resource, and reflecting on its overall fit into your project. Visit the Purdue OWL for more information on annotated bibliographies and don’t forget our citation guide to make sure you get the MLA just right.

2. Effectively using library resources

The library subscribes to a variety of electronic resources to help you find reliable academic resources for your research. Using Ebscohost databases and JSTOR gives you access to materials you might have to pay to access otherwise.

  1. Ebscohost Tutorials
  2. JSTOR Tutorials

Another resource that can be useful if Google’s specialized search engine Google Scholar. Read Google Scholar’s About Us page and their Search Tips to get the most out of your experience.

Research Tutorials: JSTOR

How to Use JSTOR by
How to Use JSTOR by

JSTOR is an online academic library that allows you access to journal articles, primary source documents and books. It is appropriate for DP research, particularly the Extended Essay, as well as some upper MYP research. Here’s a 1 minute video overview of searching JSTOR.

JSTOR in a minute: Search Tips from JSTOR on Vimeo.

Prefer more detail? This slideshow walks you through the basics of researching with JSTOR, including basic searches, advanced searches, organizing your results and using MyJSTOR.

JSTOR has recently expanded their eBook collection, and they’re quite proud of it. The video below gives a one minute overview of eBooks in JSTOR; watch it and learn how to make eBooks work for you.

Researching with Ebscohost: Tutorials

Research :Mediterranean Center of Medical Sciences under CC BY 2.0
Flickr Photo “Research :Mediterranean Center of Medical Sciences” by MCMScience Mediterranean under CC BY 2.0

EBSCOhost is a powerful online reference system accessible via the Internet. It offers a variety of proprietary full text databases and popular databases from leading information providers. EBSCOhost offers customizable basic and advanced searching supported by Boolean logic, natural language, enhanced subject indexing and journal searching. With links from the full record display to related articles by subject, magazine issue or author, users can further explore their topic. In addition, EBSCOhost allows patrons to print, email or download multiple articles.

To learn more about how to use this resource, watch the EBSCOhost tutorials below.