Author: Tammi Little
1. Task Definition:
2. Information Seeking Strategies:
3. Location and Access:
4. Use of Information:
Be sure to note that if you present other process models that Kuhlthau’s model is not conceptually the same or equal to the Big6 Model. It is a process model. Kuhlthau’s model was derived from what people actually do in seeking information. It also helps us to plan our professional intervention based upon what she learned about how people feel at various stages in their searches in school and public libraries.
The other models present ways to teach problem solving and project creation and evaluation. Although we can teach the Big6 — we don’t necessarily teach the Information Problem Solving (IPS) as articulated by Kuhlthau.
An idea about the actual banana split presentation — It might be useful to put all of the goodies that people will use to make the banana splits into several plain brown paper bags.
In this way, part of their job will be to decide how they will go about information seeking –i.e. the universe method (unpacking everything and then deciding what is relevant to their needs) or the berry picking method (go through the bags item by item, choosing what may be useful and leaving in the bag items which are not); or other method they might find useful based on their own preferences.
This also means that you may want to provide some items which may have little value to people, instead of providing only what is necessary for making the banana split (we get lots more information than we need when we are getting started in researching a project–and have to decide which information is relevant and which is not. We don’t necessarily ever use everything that we find, right?) A monkey wrench, string, crayons, mustard, or scissors, for example, while useful tools for some purposes may be of very little value in this exercise.
You might want to provide some cookbooks which contain recipes for banana splits.
Provide some articles in the bags of goodies that force participants to make some more serious choices among alternatives — i.e.,choices which call for evaluation at more than one step in the overall process. This is a way to ensure that evaluation occur at every step.
Maybe define a task as making the most healthful banana split, and thus provide options (sugar free toppings, vs. natural flavor–thus engaging with this activity on a higher congnitive level). Ask that participants consider food preferences of members, or allergies (to nuts).
Finally, provide each group with a large sheet of paper with the Big6 steps indicated — then have one person in each group write down the steps taken and the activities or decisions made at each step. This can serve as a record or journal which can be the basis for discussion about their experience after they have eaten.
Don’t forget the moist towels or something to clean up — this activity gets sticky!
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