Proficiency in Research and note-taking is a complicated process, but students can learn by actually doing it in centers and mini-lessons. This is one of my favorite activities because the students take it quite seriously as they visit the pumpkin patch. (I'm sure it has nothing to do with the fact that they can choose their own pumpkin after they get down seven facts.)
Step 1: Get students engaged (see Pumpkin Patch Practice) for information on what students are doing. What's not to love about this? Kids are outside in the middle of a pumpkin patch they helped set up (and will at the end of the day, clean up)
Step 2: Provide many short term projects that include "easy to find" sources.
Let's face it, pumpkins provide the perfect opportunity for research. The kids won't even feel like they are doing work as they create this fun flip-flap book.
On my website, I have a nutrition page with information on most fruits and vegetables grown in the United States.
My theory is- practice makes perfect. As students look up information and record it in fun ways (such as a flip-flap book). Each time they look up information, it gets easier. Each time I also teach another research skill, so they pick up the information a little at a time. In my Columbus, Mega Bundle blog post, I introduce a Research foldable that introduces Bibliographies in a very non-threatning way. Read more about it HERE