Guide to Topic Exploration
Making informed decisions about complicated issues is a critical life skill.
◦ This skill must be guided and practiced.
Today, given the ease of access to information as well as the great number of unreliable sources available, making informed decisions is even more challenging.
Students must master:
◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ defining a need for information; locating appropriate information; evaluating the reliability of that information; using that information to make informed decisions regarding complex issues that affect their lives.
President Obama was elected on a platform of change. In his inaugural speech, he set specific goals for his administration to achieve this change. Through his first 100 days, the President has attempted to use the power of his office to move the country toward achieving these goals. Whether or not his efforts have been effective is a matter of argument.
Students must decide for him or herself if the President is succeeding in achieving the vision outlined in his inauguration. This can only be done by examining the specific actions he has taken during the first 100 days.
Students are going to write a research paper that states your opinion on whether President Obama has moved toward achieving his vision for America. This vision was broken into three separate themes: The Price and Promise of Citizenship; The Economy; and Science, Technology and the Environment.
Select one theme to investigate. Research the President’s actions within this theme and focus on one specific topic he has attempted to influence. Research this specific topic further and then determine whether or not you feel he has moved the country toward his vision. You will support your position with information on this specific topic that you have found through research.
Students must: provide information that explains your understanding of your chosen theme; detail the actions President Obama has taken to this point; declare whether or not you believe these actions have moved the country toward his vision.
Research paper must: be at least three typed pages, double-spaced, using 12-point font. reference information from the NBPS RESOURCE PAGE FOR OBAMA'S FIRST 100 DAYS. cite at least three different sources of varying type (online; periodical; book; etc.). follow MLA format for a research paper (including Works Cited page).
Students may also: cite and analyze expert evaluations of President Obama’s actions; compare President Obama’s actions to the actions of past presidents.
In President Obama’s Own Words:
Price & Promise of Citizenship
“Those values upon which our success depends — hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism.”
“The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act — not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth.”
Science, Technology & The Environment
“We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories.”
Energy Efficiency Climate Change Renewable Energy Carbon Dioxide Emissions American Clean Energy & Security Act of 2009 EPA Solar Energy Wind Energy
Additional (Not Highlighted) Cap & Trade System New Electrical Grid Air Pollution/Greenhouse Gases India’s Energy Plan China’s Energy Plan
• • • • • • •
• • • •
Stem Cells Electric Cars Hybrid Cars Alternative Fuels Solar Energy Wind Energy Nuclear Waste Hurricane Preparation FEMA Green Energy Air Pollution EPA Organic Food
Teacher will read an article with their students and model how specific topics can be synthesized from it (for example, after reading “Energy and Climate Bill Advances” from day 85 the teacher could write “renewable energy”, “Solar power”, or even “Global warming” as potential topics that could be derived from the article.
Students will have the remaining class period to read articles from the page. Students who are using computers to access the “100 Days” page will read the articles online. Students working without a computer will read printed out articles that they will exchange with other students when they are finished.
Students will be responsible to fill out a “President Obama’s First 100 Days Research Topic Article Guide” for three (3) articles that they read.
After they finish their three Article Guides, students will choose one article to act as the focal point for their research topic, and synthesize their topic.
About the Article/Source
Article/Source Name: Website Address: Theme (Please select, can fall into multiple categories): Specific Issue:
In the Article/Source
Summary of Article/Source: Information About Issue: What Has President Obama Done? Why This Issue Interests Me?
Beyond The Article/Source
What Else Do I Need To Know About My Topic? What Else Do I Need To Know About What President Obama Has Done?