John Langan has taught reading and writing at Atlantic Cape Community College near Atlantic City, New Jersey, for more than twenty-five years. The author of a popular series of college textbooks on both writing and reading, John enjoys the challenge of developing materials that teach skills in an especially clear and lively way. Before teaching, he earned advanced degrees in writing at Rutgers University and in reading at Rowan University. He also spent a year writing fiction that, he says, is now at the back of a drawer waiting to be discovered and acclaimed posthumously. While in school, he supported himself by working as a truck driver, a machinist, a battery assembler, a hospital attendant, and an apple packer. John now lives with his wife, Judith Nadell, near Philadelphia. In addition to his wife and Philly sports teams, his passions include reading and turning on nonreaders to the pleasure and power of books. Through Townsend Press, his educational publishing company, he has developed the nonprofit Townsend Library, a collection of more than a hundred new and classic stories.
Inquiry on the Internet: Evaluating Web Pages for a Class Collection
In this lesson plan, middle school students explore a class inquiry project, collecting Web-based resources that can be used for further study during the course of the class or for more in-depth projects. Students use Internet search engines and Web analysis checklists and questions to find and evaluate online resources then write annotations that explain how and why the items they have found will be valuable to the class. This lesson plan can be completed individually or in groups. For demonstration purposes, this lesson plan focuses on researching a specific country or several countries; however, this activity can be completed with any inquiry topic in the classroom.