Search Tips

Searching for information can be challenging in today’s information age.  We have many resources available to us, but which is the best one and how do we find it?

Below is an excerpt from an article by Holly Clark posted on October 22, 2013:

Critical Search Skills Students Should Know

Quotation Marks

Students should always use quotes to search for an exact word or set of words. This is useful when you want something like quotes, song lyrics or text from a an exact historical time period.

  • Example: “The Great Chicago Fire”

Dashes (or minus sign)

Use this symbol directly before a word to help exclude unwanted information from your search

  • Example: Great Chicago Fire -soccer

Two Periods

Use this to help you find information between those two numbers. For example you might want to try:

  • Example: Great Chicago Fire October 8..10

Site Search

For a look through the Chicago HIstory Museum site only

  • Examples: Great Chicago Fire or

Country Codes

Students should gather every side and view possible on current events, and historical news stories. Not just those that are seen through the red, white and blue colored lenses of our media. To do this all they need is to search using different country codes.

Click here to read the whole article and watch a couple of very helpful videos.


World Book Online.  A great reference that is available through our school district.  All students should have the password in their planners.  Please see Mrs. Araujo in the library if you need the password.

Webpath Express, available through Burnaby South’s library catalogue, is another place to find sources of information.  It is available on the Library Home Page under Online Resources. Use Webpath Express in your research to find variety of sites that include site summaries and reading grade levels.


How do you evaluate websites and determine whether they are authentic?  Check out this lesson plan for grades 6-8 by Kathy Schrock:

Critical Evaluation of a Web Page Lesson Plan

Teachers and Parents:

Check out sites like and Kids in the Know for some great information on how you can help your students or child navigate the online world safely and productively.



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