While attending the sixth grade, students begin to learn in-depth writing skills, proper notation of sources and researching skills, and will often be assigned to write research papers. The research paper has a few basic elements all sixth-grade students must keep in mind while writing: topic selection, researching information, citation of sources, outlining and preparation work, rough drafts, revision and final draft.
Pick a topic. While teachers will assign a general subject area to choose from, such as historical figures or events, the student must pick the final topic. Select three preferred and obtain teacher approval for the one you like best.
Find research materials. Usually, teachers will require at least one book source, but different teachers will have different specifics for preferred research methods. Online resources and books are among the most common research options. Magazines, journals and similar periodicals are also appropriate.
Take notes about the topic. Put any citation information, such as book title, author, date published or website address on the first card or page of notes. If writing a quote or mentioning statistics, write the page number or location of the data on the card. Number cards in sources to keep track of information.
Write an outline. This is a basic guideline for organizing the information from the research. For example, if researching an event, write the information according to the times different parts of the event took place. Outlines contain main points and support for the points. Each paragraph should have one main point and some support of the point. If using a quote, numerical data or a paraphrase, put the page number and source information to the side.
Write the paper. Use the outline to form the paper. The introduction should give a brief description of the content within the paper and a strong statement about the topic. The body, which usually contains two or three paragraphs, should have one main point that supports the introductory point and supporting statements after the main point. The conclusion is similar to the introduction, but in a backwards order summarizing the information in the paper.
Create a works cited page. This is the page where the sources for the research paper are placed. The sources should be in alphabetical order and should contain all of the information about the sources, such as author name, publishing dates and titles.
Edit the paper for clarity, grammar, spelling and style.
Write the final draft. Use the corrections and rewrite the paper to fix the mistakes. Make a cover page, which includes the title of the paper, the student's name, teacher's name, the class and due date.
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