Inquiry Pathfinders

The Guided Inquiry Design Process is a research process grounded in decades of research that illustrate its effectiveness.  Inquiry Pathfinders from Vic High Library are designed to assists students with one or more of the inquiry phases in context of specific information tasks in a given class.


  • Begin with a specific inquiry pathfinder below; access the link in your Google Classroom.
  • If you miss the lesson associated with the inquiry pathfinder, see your teacher-librarian Ms. Burleson.  The student guides are a touchstone, but are not a substitute for the teaching and learning that happens face-to-face.
  • If you do not see an inquiry pathfinder for your class and you need help, see  Ms. Burleson.


InformationTaskCourseTeacher/DateStudent Guides - Inquiry Phases
- Be able to explain why someone from your home country is a "hero," using research.ELDMs. McTavishHeroes Research -- FINDING RESOURCES


Heroes Research -- CREATE YOUR PROJECT
Voicethread sign up
- Gather reliable sources on your home country, reference sources correctly, and take notes in your own wordsELDMs. McTavishHome Country Research: Finding and Tracking sources
- Be able to access and use audiobooksELDMs. McTavishAudiobooks Activity
Grade 9
-Review how to find reliable information sources and learn how to take research notes to support a main idea in an expository paragraphEnglish 9Ms. MelvinFinding sources & creating an annotated reference list

- Understand how to locate a newspaper article in a database using a variety of search filters/search limitersEnglish 9Ms. MelvinLesson (Oct. 4)
- Understand forms of plagiarism and how to avoid themSocial Studies 9Ms. Mengual, s1, 2018-2019Forms of plagiarism
Citation & Avoiding plagiarism - Note-taking template
Avoiding unintentional plagiarism -- a few examples
- Understand the key features of a major revolution (1750-1918) and be able to compare/contrast it to the French RevolutionSocial Studies 9Ms. Conkin, s1, 2019-2010Note-taking template

Checklist - Reference List
- Gather information for a persuasive paragraphEnglish 9Ms. Melvin, s1, 2018-19Step 1: Find quality sources

Step 2: Preparing for Note-taking
Phase 3: Create the outline, citations, & reference list
Grade 10
- Find academic sources for an inquiry projectEng 10Ms. Sholinder, s1, 2019-2020Database Search Strategies
- Show an understanding of a story through image(s) and a verbal explanationEng 10Mr. Sefton, s1, 2019-2020Voicethread sign-in link
- Explore three topics as part of the "Open" part of the Inquiry-based research processEng 10Ms. Brooke, s1 2019-2020Creation Myths

YouTube video: "Creation from the Void"

CBC podcast: "Legends of the Old Masset Haida"
- Develop an inquiry-based project on a topic related to the content of SS 10SS10Ms. Fischbach, s2, 2018-19Open/Explore
Identify an inquiry question (see Ms. Burleson for handout)

Finding useful and reliable sources
- Develop an informed opinion about book challenges and bans in school librariesEnglish 10Ms. Hope, s2, 2019Bookmark template
Freedom to Read web site
Bookmark assignment directions
- Find reliable and current sources to develop an infographic comparison of two countries' populationsSS10Ms. Mengual, s2, 2018-19Finding Sources
Example of a comparison-style infographic
- Develop an inquiry question for an interdisciplinary investigationEnglish 10Ms. Hope, s2, 2018-19Strategies for developing an inquiry question
Developing a search strategy & finding appropriate sources
- Locate THREE useful resources that pass the CRAAP test to develop the genetics projectScience 10Ms. Koslowski, s1, 2018Lesson - Finding Sources
-Develop a character sketch of Billy Bishop using images, knowledge of the play Billy Bishop Goes to War, and the text sources from Biography Resource in Context databaseEnglish 10Ms. Gerwing, s1, 2018-19Assignment Directions/Evaluation
Voicethread sign up (where you'll upload your images and narration)
Analyse d’une caricature du CanadaFrench Immersion - 10Ms. Jensen, s1, 2018-19Sources
Begbie Contest Society
Globe Cartoons by Chappatte (en francais)
EBSCO Primary Search database (scroll down to icon from this link)
Create your project
Voicethread sign up
Find primary and secondary sources to develop an informational poster about an Vic High individual who served during World War ISocial Studies 10Ms. Potkins, s1, 2018-2019Primary Sources
Victoria High School in the Great War web site**specific sections
The British Colonist online
Secondary Sources
Victoria High School in the Great War**specific sections
A City Goes to War web site

SEARCH TIPS (class lesson)
View the slides/lesson
Gather information about a notable woman who fits the Women's History Month 2019 and develop a postcard biographyLTST 10Ms. Hope, s2, 2018-19Sign up sheet
Assignment Outline

Notes/writing tips & exemplar of postcard bio -- see Ms. Burleson for handouts

Sample postcard bio (created with a free template on

Develop an inquiry on a topic related to the Victorian EraEnglish 10Ms. Hope, s2, 2018Victorian Era -- open/explore
Find & discuss an interdisciplinary connection to literature English 10Ms. Hope, s2, 2018Developing an inquiry question
Grade 11
- find useful & reliable resources to create an appendix on a topic related to the book A Long Way GoneSpoken Language 11Ms. Ellis, s1, 2019Lesson #1 - finding sources

Lesson #2: Creating a spoken-word resource
- Develop a visual and verbal explanation of your learning based on part 3 of the criteria as outlined on the A Long Way Gone appendix assignmentSpoken Language 11Ms. Ellis, s1, 2019Sign up for Voicethread at this link
- Find useful & reliable sourcesGender Studies 11/12Ms. Sholinder, s1, 2018Finding useful sources through library databases
- Find reliable sources of data about a countrySocial Studies 11Ms. Jensen, s1, 2018Gathering Information - Choosing sources of data (includes links to suggested resources)
- Find biographical information, quotes, and information that critically evaluates a famous 20th century photographerPhotography 11Ms. Pugh, s2, 2018-19Finding information and creating a bibliography of sources
Grade 12
- Use the guided inquiry process to develop a four-paragraph research-based persuasive essayEnglish 12Ms. Melvin, s1, 2019-2020STEP 1
FINAL STEPS: in-text citations, reference list, and title page
- Identify and apply a presentation medium for the dystopian novel studyEnglish 12Ms. Melvin, s1, 2019-2020Choosing a presentation medium for an inquiry project
- Narrow a Social Justice 12 topic and develop a focused inquiry questionSocial Justice 12Ms. Hope, s1, 201902020Activity - Source types

Activity (copy and paste this link into your documents and complete it/hand in via Google Docs
- Develop search strategies for locating an article in a DATABASE
- Apply criteria for evaluating a general web source located through Google
English 12Ms. Melvin, s1, 2019-2020Lesson #1: Database search strategies

Lesson #2: Using Google and Wikipedia

Poster Promotion
Instructions - Annotated Reference list

Sample annotated Reference List

Poster exemplar & elements

Poster template - please copy & paste BEFORE editing!
- Develop an inquiry-based research strategy to a geography topicGeography 12Ms. Reside, s2, 2018-19Research Strategy -- Exploring possible topics & sources
-Develop a persuasive essay based on researchEnglish 12Mr. Dunstan, s1, 2018-19STEP 1: Develop a focus and search strategy
STEP 2: Select, Sort & Sift Sources<a STEP 3: Read, Develop a thesis & read/highlight to support the thesis
STEP 4: Build the essay outline & notes
- Develop critical and creative response to a dystopian novelEnglish 12Ms. Hope, s1, 2018-19Join the class' Voicethread
Inquiry-based persuasive essay
Phase 1: Open/Explore phase
Phase 2: Identify a focus & gather sources
Phase 3: Articulate a thesis, select & organize information
- Develop an evidence-based persuasive essay using the inquiry processEnglish 12Ms. Melvin, s1, 2018-19Phase 1: Open/Explore
Phase 2: Develop an Inquiry Question & Gather Sources
Phase 3: Prepare for note-taking
Phase 4: Build the Essay
Phase 5: Create the final essay
Phase 6: Self-evaluation